The Big Interview

Surpassing Ethereum was a ‘big moment for us’ admits IOST CEO

IOST isn't messing around. Within six weeks of launching its mainnet, the 'application-friendly' blockchain surpassed Ethereum's total daily dApp transactions

While the crypto winter has brought many blockchain projects to their knees, others have surfaced stronger and bolder than ever before. Take the self-dubbed ‘application-friendly’ blockchain network (read Ethereum competitor) IOST. The Beijing-headquartered team launched its mainnet six months ahead of schedule at the end of February – the ‘only’ project to have done so.

With the lofty goal of going head to head with far larger blockchains such as Ethereum, IOTA, and EOS, CEO Jimmy Zhong spoke to Coin Rivet about how it felt surpassing Ethereum, what IOST’s plans are next, and why he believes that IOST will become the “go-to blockchain network for mainstream adoption”.

Breaking a new transaction record within weeks of launch

Not everyone’s heard of IOST. After all, if your main focus is on the top 10 or even 20 coins, IOST is trailing behind. Yet it could be a dark horse in this race. With major investor backing including the likes of Sequoia and Nirvana Capital and a strong developer team, IOST is definitely flexing its muscles.

Within weeks of launch, the application-friendly blockchain platform surpassed Ethereum in terms of transactions, processing 580,231 on April 6 against Ethereum’s 558,272.

That’s no mean feat, especially when you consider that Ethereum is the back-end of a quarter of all tokens. Moreover, its 400,000-strong developer community dwarfs that of IOST, as does the number of dApps on the network.

Ethereum has over 2,000 dApps on its platform. IOST has just 11. That’s a stark comparison in terms of the work the Chinese blockchain has to do to attract more developers (especially if it’s as “friendly” as it says it is). However, it’s also gigantic merit. That just 11 dApps can surpass the combined transactions of over 2,000 in one day shows how many projects on Ethereum are dead or dying from low user adoption.

IOST seems to be serious about what it’s hoping to achieve – becoming the catalyst for mainstream adoption. It’s already registered over 200,000 accounts on the network since February and added 15,000 wallets per day since launch.

Of the nine new dApps launched on the mainnet, six are games. One of which, Endless Game, hit 700 million IOST tokens in one day.

The IOST token has also been listed and traded on no less than 26 exchanges. Its record growth has outstripped the major blockchain projects in the months after their mainnet launches.

IOST CEO Jimmy Zhong speaks about these achievements

Coin Rivet: Your total TX surpassed Ethereum in one day, but is that typical? What are your daily transactions like?

JZ: Surpassing Ethereum was certainly a big moment for us. While this has yet to become the norm, it demonstrates IOST’s ability to contest and exceed some of the most established protocols today.

We’ve processed over 26 million transactions within our first month, but we’ve only just started and are confident that these figures will grow rapidly in the months to come.

Coin Rivet: Most of your dApps are centred on gaming. Do you think gaming is going to be the pivotal vertical to bring more users into blockchain?

JZ: Gaming is a critical launchpad for IOST to reach the masses. The complete ownership, transfer, exchange, and sale of assets that gamers experience through blockchain technology create an immediate appeal for wider gamers to engage with our ecosystem.

A month on from the launch of our mainnet, IOST has already enabled developers such as Endless Game and Team Joy to offer more seamless gaming experiences to users, and help bring the benefits of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology closer to people outside of this space.

As IOST continues to attract more partners and developers to build on our network, we will see our ecosystem support stablecoins, wallets, exchanges, social networks, and other enterprise solutions, and make the benefits of blockchain technology more tangible to businesses and everyday individuals.

Gaming is big for IOST, but it’s not their sole focus

Gaming is a major vertical for IOST. However, it’s just one of the ways IOST aims to reach the masses. The company recently partnered with Ehang, a China-based autonomous vehicle company, for example.

This might seem like a complete 180 from catering to the gaming world. Yet the Internet of Services Token (IOST) is capable of much more. It will be providing flight data analytics for the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC). The project utilises blockchain technology to deliver secure and reliable data to prevent tampering by third parties.

Coin Rivet: What’s the significance of your partnership with Ehang?

JZ: IOST’s strategic partnership with Ehang demonstrates our ability to meet the processing needs of enterprises and governments who are interested in harnessing the benefits that blockchain technology can bring to their business and society.

As we begin to attract more leading enterprises and public agencies, IOST will cement itself as the go-to blockchain network for mainstream adoption.

Why IOST has gained traction in the midst of a bear market

Coin Rivet: How has IOST weathered the crypto winter? Have you had to scale down at all? It looks like it’s all up, up, up…

JZ: 2018 was certainly challenging for many blockchain projects, but enabled only the most scalable and application-friendly blockchain networks to stand out. These conditions only made us more resilient and as a result, we stand as the only mainnet to have launched six months ahead of schedule with dApps ready to go live.

Coin Rivet: What are the biggest challenges that lie ahead? Is scaling still a major issue?

JZ: The scalability trilemma, or having to exclusively select between centralisation, security, and scalability, has made it challenging for developers to launch dApps that are built for mainstream adoption. IOST was created to address this.

Our unique Proof-of-Believability Consensus Mechanism (PoB) combines the decentralised benefits of Proof-of-Work (PoW) and Proof-of-Stake (PoS) systems, which allows for more efficient and decentralised transactions across the network, higher speeds, and therefore, the scalability needed to power the next generation of internet services.

Coin Rivet: When will you have reached a critical mass in terms of user base?

JZ: IOST is designed to be the most application-friendly blockchain network available today. We already have a suite of 11 dApps which offer users entertainment and other valuable applications, drawing over 200,000 accounts registered within the first month of our mainnet.

We are also working to support the wider ecosystem of blockchain-based applications that are targeted at everyday users. An example of this is Bermi, a social network that rewards users for creating and engaging with short, viral videos.

As we continue to support our network of over 200 partners in building more enterprise and consumer-ready dApps, IOST will eventually see everyday businesses and consumers on the IOST ecosystem.

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