The trade-offs between scalability and decentralization in blockchain development are well documented. Of the successors to Ethereum, EOS has proved one of the most successful in achieving scalability. Nevertheless, the network has been fraught issues stemming from a concentration of EOS tokens into the hands of a few whales and only having 21 block producers.
Therefore, as the more decentralized platform, Ethereum remains the blockchain of choice for many developers. Currently, it’s running more than eight times as many dApps as its nearest competitor. However, Ethereum continues to be plagued by scalability issues. If the reports from the recent DevCon are to be believed, it will be another two years before the long-promised Eth 2.0 reboot lands, and Ethereum becomes truly scalable.
Although, perhaps not. While the Ethereum core developers continue to make baby steps towards Eth 2.0, another team is speeding up the race to scale the platform. Matic Network has just released a beta version of its side-chain second layer for Ethereum, which is capable of many more thousands of transactions per second than the base layer. The beta launch comes ahead of a full main net launch, anticipated to happen before the end of Q1 next year.
Not Just Another IEO
As the IEO has taken over from the ICO as the funding mechanism of choice for blockchain startups, only a few have emerged that stand out from the crowd as having sustainable long term potential. Perhaps unsurprisingly, these few that have were handpicked by the biggest name in the cryptocurrency exchange game, Binance. The company’s IEO platform, Launchpad, has hosted projects including Fetch.AI, Bittorrent, Bread, and Matic Network.
Among these projects, Matic was the one selected by Coinbase Ventures for seed investment immediately following the IEO. The project token is also under review by Coinbase for a listing on the exchange. More recently, it became one of the only projects outside the top 30 to be selected as part of the Binance Lending Product range.
Of course, endorsement by itself doesn’t make a successful project. For any platform, attracting projects to build on it is one of the most critical success factors. For its part, Matic has run with the momentum provided by the initial boost of association with two of the biggest names in crypto.
It’s already secured partnerships with more than 25 dApps building on the Matic platform, making it the most adopted second-layer solution by far. Now, as part of the beta release, several of these projects have started to unveil demonstrations of their solutions operating on the beta version of Matic.
One example is Biconomy. This project aims to make dApps as accessible to users as an everyday app, by enabling meta transactions that do away with the need for users to pay transaction fees. In doing so, users won’t need to hold tokens or use an exchange or wallet to enjoy the dApp experience. One of the project’s co-founders has released a video demonstration of Biconomy in action, powered by the Matic beta net.
Tradelink is another example. This dApp is a business management platform offering near-instant transaction settlements and account reconciliation to enterprises. In doing so, it aims to reduce inefficiencies and redundancies, streamlining business process. The video demo showcases how a business manager can invite suppliers and customers to the platform and start creating purchase and sales orders using a simple web interface.
Other projects building on Matic include trading platform Koinfox, professional networking app SpringRole, and perhaps the best known, decentralized VR universe, Decentraland.
Breeding a Blockchain Tiger?
With a team hailing from India, Matic is one of the only big-name blockchain projects to emerge from the subcontinent, at least so far. The fact that this team is delivering against their roadmap, attracting developers to their platform, and gaining the attention of some of the biggest names in blockchain, will surely provide a boost to the Indian blockchain scene.
Perhaps Matic’s growing profile will even encourage more of the country’s vast pool of programmers to make a foray into blockchain. After all, the sector is badly in need of a talent pipeline.
The latest news about Eth 2.0 still being two years away could end up damaging the faith of some community members, who may doubt that the platform will ever deliver on its promise. However, by the time the main net launch rolls around, Matic can sell itself as an out-of-the-box scalability solution for Ethereum. It’s enough to make one wonder – do we even need an Eth 2.0? Once Matic launches, the answer will become clear.
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