IOTA: The Distributed Permissionless Ledger for The Internet of Things
~ Interoperability between blockchains, Platform, Digital currency, Micropayments.
For the average crypto enthusiast, what comes to mind when IOTA is mentioned is the internet of things. It’s one of the famous crypto projects that has grabbed investors’ attention and remains the major network for internet-connected gadgets. The project isn’t just focused on distributed IoT but also uses an incredible technology that makes it different from other blockchain-based systems. It has experienced several ups and down within the past four years of its existence but has remained strong.
What is IOTA?
The IOTA project has been around since 2015 after a crowdsale that successfully raised 1,337 Bitcoin estimated at the time to be $500,000. It’s a unique public distributed ledger that was built without a block or chain.
This means that it’s not really a blockchain but a distributed ledger that makes use of Directed Acyclic Graph (DAG) technology as well as something it calls the Tangle to provide consensus. So, the IOTA project doesn’t require miners to confirm transactions like many blockchain projects.
After the ICOs and crowdsales, all the funds (about three quadrillion IOTA tokens) were given to the crowdsale participants. None was given to the developers, advisors or even the founders. Since no tokens were reserved for the team behind the project, the community eventually resolved to donate about five percent of the token’s total supply to the IOTA Foundation. Interestingly, that money has been used to fund the project since its inception. So, what’s the primary objective of IOTA?
The project is working toward enabling the growing machine economy, and they want to achieve this by handling all machine-to-machine payments required to enable the Internet of Things. So, IOTA can enable all the computing devices embedded in machinery (in businesses, homes and factories) to communicate, send and receive data. They can also make micropayments to ensure that the data is flowing by making use of the IOTA Tangle which is feeless.
Some IOTA Use Cases
While some blockchain projects have only boasted of what they can do theoretically, IOTA is not a theoretical network. The project already has several real-world use cases and applications that keep expanding even as the IOTA network continues to enjoy increased adoption. Here are some of the common use cases of IOTA:
· Smart Energy: The decentralization of the electricity grid started in 2016 and presently, the power and energy sector is fast heading toward the Internet of Things. Since IOTA is scalable and feeless, it provides the energy industry an ideal solution to its challenges. IOTA has already started working with Elaadnl, a Dutch power consortium since 2017 to create smart charging stations for electric cars. The stations are designed to ensure that payments and data transfers occur automatically between the charger and the vehicle. They are currently testing this same technology to help create smart energy communities.
· Smart Cities: This is also another area IOTA is proving to be useful. In January 2018, the IOTA Foundation entered into an agreement with Taipei to explore the use of the IOTA technology in moving the city into a futuristic smart city. The digital ID card created based on the Tangle was part of the earliest tests that was conducted in addition to the integration of the technology into air pollution monitoring gadgets. What’s even more interesting about this partnership is that the Taipei government believes that since they are ensuring data integrity by using distributed ledger technology, citizens will have more trust in government services.
· Supply Chains and Manufacturing: The IOTA platform can help in all stages of manufacturing and supply chain. This is because it offers immutable documentation at all points to ensure that all goods are authentic. Once the data is added to the Tangle, it would be easy to identify the origin of any given product and this includes the country of origin as well as who created it. It will reveal when the product was manufactured and trace it to a particular employee that manufactured it. When all this information and several others are written and stored, manufacturers, distributors, and even consumers will trust all the products they receive.
· Automotive Industry: Another industry that can benefit from IOTA technology, as well as its feeless transfer of value between connected devices is the transportation industry. Cars that have their crypto wallet can easily settle toll, parking and charging station fees automatically. These vehicles could even receive payments for ride-sharing and delivery services or for selling data.
Apart from the numerous use cases, IOTA already has a long list of partners, ranging from large to small organizations. In fact, the project has continued to add new projects and partners in 2020. Some of the most popular partnerships and the most recent ones include:
· Jaguar Land Rover
· Dell Technologies & Linux Foundation
The native token of the IOTA project is MIOTA and it was designed to help power microtransactions between IoT devices. Of course, the IOTA project can lead to the creation of an open market of devices where the usage and transfer of resources can be billed in real-time. For instance, cars that share data on road or weather conditions can get small micropayments in return.
The circulating supply of IOTA which is 2,779,530,283, was agreed on by the team of developers because it is optimized for ternary computation. No IOTA coins will ever be mined again because the total supply has already been pre-mined during the genesis transaction. IOTA is listed on Binance, HitBTC, OKEx, Huobi Global and Binance KR.
Perhaps what really makes IOTA unique is the fact that it is a “blockchainless blockchain.” There is so much to learn about the Crypto world. If you would like to discover other fantastic blockchain projects, then get a copy of “The Digital World of Crypto Riches.” You will find over a hundred summaries of the top-performing projects in the crypto space.
~ The official website of IOTA is https://www.iota.org/