2017 was a dramatic year for cryptocurrency projects. Several hundred coins and tokens were ceremoniously launched, many of which used Ethereum’s smart contracts technology. While Bitcoin and other first wave cryptocurrencies were once considered revolutionary, their technology has now fallen behind these newer coins. This fast pace of change has been encouraging to industry observers. leaving many confident about what 2018 has in store for them.
For instance, two new and highly anticipated blockchain platforms in development are Cardano (ADA), and XTRABYTES (XBY). While a lot of excitement appears to surround both, many people are trying to figure out which platform will emerge as the winner.
In the long run, it’s possible that both will be quite successful. There is obviously room for more than one blockchain in this world-changing industry. Crypto-fans expect these two platforms to be battling it out in 2018 and beyond. Let’s compare them to see which one should come out on top.
Beloved by many in academia, Cardano is a blockchain platform that heavily relies upon peer review to determine its direction and growth. The team behind ADA includes expert engineers, scientific researchers, and developers with years of crypto-related experience.
Their Proof of Stake algorithm uses a multi-layered protocol to tackle a wide range of advanced functions. A settlement layer serves as its foundation, upon which is control layer is linked (used to run smart contracts). This layered approach helps to facilitate its extensibility. As configured, the system strikes a smart balance between user privacy and regulatory needs. While this is akin to a tightrope walk, Cardano is confident that they can thread this needle successfully.
Its primary attraction (outside of being peer-reviewed) appears to be its ability to seamlessly change smart contracts:
Cardano aims to create a platform for decentralised applications and smart contracts that can be processed with a technique called formal verification. This allows logical proof of the correctness of code and smart contracts, for those applications where value is high and security is paramount. Cardano combines this with an innovative layered approach that separates accounting of value from all other smart contract and computation activity. This means functionality can be added to smart contract capabilities without changing the protocol responsible for the cryptocurrency.
Cardano is run in part by the Cardano Foundation, a Swiss non-profit that seeks enterprise partnerships and works with regulatory bodies. However, a company named Emurgo has been formed just to help businesses integrated Cardano into their business. Another company named IOHK helps to design, build, and maintain the blockchain platform. Obviously, Cardano has a great deal of professional support behind it.
XTRABYTES is a modular blockchain platform specifically designed to maximize security, scalability, and decentralization opportunities. It’s an innovative Proof-of-Signature consensus method allows transactions to be processed very quickly and without the need for miners. As such, it dramatically cuts down on the energy required to process a single transaction.
Moreover, XTRABYTES ensures a block signature rate of 100% (providing users with unparalleled security). All of this is built on STATIC (Services Transactions and Trusted-in-Control) nodes, which handle the bulk of the consensus, security, and governance system. In order to run a node, an investor must hold at least 500,000 XBY. This requirement helps to ensure the platform’s overall security and functionality.
In addition, the platform is code-agnostic (unlike ADA). This means that developers can create apps on the XTRABYTES blockchain in virtually any programming language desired. Having this flexibility will make it much easier for developers to quickly create apps; it should also encourage widespread adoption much more quickly as well.
Finally, the XTRABYTES platform has a big advantage over Cardano: it source code is proprietary rather than open source. While some individuals don’t like this fact, having a patented source code effectively prevents the code from being forked and ‘copycat’ blockchains from forming. This keeps the system more stable and functional in the long-term.
Predictions Through 2018
Obviously, both of these crypto projects appear highly advanced. And while they’re configured very differently, their respective supporters strongly believe that they will have a dramatic and long-term influence upon the crypto-industry as a whole. And while that may be true, less certainty exists about these platforms and their potential influence for the next 6-9 months.
With a $4 billion market cap, any objective observer would consider the Cardano project to be reasonably priced. As one might surmise, the crypto-community highly values technology that has been peer-reviewed. Its a perk that has certainly been priced in at this point.
In contrast, XTRABYTES has a market cap of just over $43 million. That’s fairly low, given its soon-to-be-expected patent pending status and subsequent mainnet launch. Indeed, it’s hard to argue that those elements have been factored into the current price. Moreover, when the system goes live, nearly 2/3rds of the circulating coins will be sequestered in the network’s STATIC nodes. This will have the effect of pushing down supply and improving demand. As such, investors can expect very positive developments for XBY in 2018.