Protocol Updates and Outlook

Feb 21, 2022

Tezos

What progress has been made in 2021?

The Tezos ecosystem continued to grow in 2021. With its built-in “self-upgradeability”, the Tezos protocol completed four upgrades in 2021 (Edo, Florence, Granada and Hangzhou) further improving tooling, core functionality which lowered gas consumption for smart contracts and doubling the transaction speed, and more. These improvements have directly resulted in contract calls increasing from over 150,000 in January to nearly 6 million in September.

Tezos has attracted a diverse NFT community of artists, collectors, and builders, including rapper PitBull. Meanwhile, Tezos’ nascent DeFi ecosystem has grown to include a range of yield farming platforms and multiple AMMs and DEXs, most recently with the launch of DeFi protocol Plenty.

Several notable brands chose to build solutions on Tezos including Formula 1 racing teams Red Bull Racing Honda and McLaren Racing, as well as Société Générale and music NFT platform OneOf.

What is coming up in 2022?

The momentum in adoption that Tezos has seen from NFTs is likely to continue, as artists, collectors, brands and more continue to build the future of digital engagement on the blockchain. The topic of the Metaverse continues to emerge as a focus for brands around the world as energy-efficient NFTs, coupled with low transaction costs, allow for broad large-scale NFT powered initiatives that can create further opportunities for Tezos as a leading Proof-of-Stake blockchain.

If 2021 was the year of the NFT, 2022 may be the year of the Metaverse, with NFTs gaining mass adoption through utility via social, gaming and more. The Tezos blockchain and its technology stand to benefit as users value its energy-efficiency and negligible transaction costs.

Polkadot/Kusama

What progress has been made in 2021?

The year 2021 saw the launch of the first parachains on both Kusama and Polkadot, an important step for the development of the Web3 ecosystem. In March 2021, Statemint was proposed with the goal of adding a common-good parachain to the Polkadot network in order to support generic assets. After Statemine, the Kusama instance of Statemint, was launched as the first fully-functional parachain on Kusama in June, it was further upgraded in July. The official launch of parachain auctions on Polkdot, came after the community accepted Motion 118, which set out the schedule of parachain auctions, spanning 2021 and 2022. The first auctions saw the Acala Network win the first auction in November with a total of 32,515,989.5 DOT contributed, followed by Moonbeam and Astar Network. On Kusama, a total of sixteen parachain teams registered crowdloans for the second batch of auctions and received contributions from 37,225 unique accounts (49,766 total across both batches of auctions) totalling 1,348,589 KSM in contributions.

What is coming up in 2022?

The planned rollout of parachain auctions continues in 2022, with the final auction based on Motion 118 scheduled to commence on 3 March 2022. Kusama parachain auctions also continue, with the current round of slots open up to 11 May 2022. With the rollout of parachains, the original vision of the Polkadot network comes to a completion based on its road map. Future upgrades, including full-featured Cross-Consensus Message Passing (XCMP) and parathreads, are envisioned, but will be implemented via the network’s governance mechanism.

Bitcoin SV

What progress has been made in 2021?

2021 has been a busy year for the BSV blockchain and ecosystem, with several technical milestones achieved. In May, there were nearly 4 million transactions recorded in one day, helped by a single block mined by Taal containing 1.3 million transactions, matching a previous record. Multiple days in August saw over 2 million transactions added to the chain, with the iGaming company Cryptofights generating many of these transactions. On August 16, the BSV network processed a record 1.247 GB size block – a block not just significant for its size, but for its underlying economics: it was the first time that the transaction fees earned (6.33 coins) were higher than the fixed subsidy amount (6.25 coins) for the block. The record for the largest block was subsequently broken, with the world record – achieved on the BSV network – now standing at 2 GB.

Later in the year, on September 3, the BSV blockchain became the most data-rich blockchain and since that time has grown to a total size of over 2 TB. Importantly, despite the increased traffic and demand on the network throughout 2021, the median transaction fee has remained under 1/50th of a U.S. cent throughout the year.

What is coming up in 2022

There are strong expectations for the wider BSV ecosystem in 2022, as well as major technical milestones on the network roadmap to achieve. The most important moment expected to occur next year is the release of Teranode – a multi-machine implementation of the Bitcoin SV node software that utilises horizontal scaling to unlock increased capacity on the network (a live demonstration at CoinGeek Zurich earlier this year processed more than 50,000 transactions per second). What will be interesting is how this additional capacity to the network is utilised.

The year 2021 saw companies leveraging the BSV network for a host of activities. nChain released its platform, Kensei, in July 2021, and signed up kompany and Crucial Compliance, both firms enhancing their existing offerings by leveraging blockchain’s immutable data integrity functionality. In 2022, it is expected to see greater understanding and acceptance of the broad applicability of data integrity, especially in iGaming and CBDC solutions.

Cardano

What progress has been made in 2021?

Recent hard forks, such as adding native tokens in March and smart contract capability in September, have brought a wide range of users into the Cardano ecosystem. Aggregators of Cardano projects estimate there are approximately 274 projects in development or actively running on the Cardano network. These projects range from insurance, payments, lending & borrowing to wallets, stablecoins, decentralised finance, and decentralised exchanges.

Cardano now has over 2 million native assets. This has brought multi-asset support to the ecosystem, which allows users to create custom tokens and carry out transactions directly on the Cardano blockchain. All of this has led to the rapid growth in transaction volumes in the past year, even exceeding a milestone of 22 million transactions and more than 2 million native wallets.

What is coming up in 2022?

Cardano’s roadmap follows five phases, with three done and two left. Basho and Voltaire are focused on scaling the network to billions of enterprise grade transactions and growing governance on chain.

The next year is about realizing the full potential of Cardano as the focus transitions from early deployment and feedback to optimization and scale. As core components – including wallet connectors and the Plutus Application Backend (PAB) – are finalized and integrated into mainnet, Cardano aims to see even greater growth in network activity.

Additionally, Cardano is on a trajectory towards creating native assets which will differ substantially from other blockchains. In the future, a native asset on Cardano may come with its own governance features, which have the same security guarantees as ADA, the Cardano blockchain’s native cryptocurrency. There are also plans to extend the Distributed Innovation Fund, Catalyst, and its voting mechanisms from 292 000 votes in its latest funding round to 400’000 in the next round.

Bitcoin Suisse