QuarkChain (QKC) is trying to solve one of the most pertinent issues that cryptocurrencies currently face, that of the blockchain trilemma.
The project has been gaining quite a bit of traction ever since their successful ICO earlier this year. People were intrigued by the promise 1m transactions per second built on a two-layered blockchain that will implement sharding.
However, are these just mere promises in another whitepaper?
In this QuarkChain review, we will take a deep dive into the project by analyzing not only at the proposed technology but also at the practicality of it. We will also look into the team members, adoption, roadmap, and long-term QKC token prospects.
With that being said, let’s jump right into the need for a QuarkChain like a solution.
What is QuarkChain?
QuarkChain is a decentralized blockchain that is also permission-less and secure, but most importantly it is scalable. The QuarkChain team has as one of its major goals to utilize sharding technology and deliver in excess of 1 million transactions per second.
It is looking to become the blockchain for high capacity throughput, delivering a solution that is secure and fast enough for widely used decentralized applications (dApps).
Scalability has been one of the biggest hurdles faced by blockchains in 2018, and QuarkChain was created specifically to resolve scalability issues faced by blockchains. This has become an urgent issue for the industry, and is one that the team feels simply cannot wait any longer.
They have embarked on providing a solution that may be different from those put forward previously, but could also be the one that actually works best. They’re not afraid of needing a hard fork if that’s what it takes to succeed.
QuarkChain’s sharding technology will enable up to 1 million transactions per second. As a comparison, Bitcoin can only deliver 4 transactions per second, while Ethereum delivers 10 transactions per second. Even the Visa network is only capable of delivering 45,000 transactions per second.
If QuarkChain can meet the goal of 1 million transactions per second it will be by far the fastest network on the planet. This could see it overtaking Ethereum as dApp developers switch to QuarkChain to support increased usage.
Sharding is the primary reason that QuarkChain can deliver such a fast network, but since it is a blockchain it still brings decentralization and security. And the development team have experience at major tech companies, giving them the ability to create and deliver a large-scale distributed system. It also gives the team the knowledge needed to create scalability by extending their knowledge of centralized systems to the decentralized QuarkChain system.
QuarkChain Beyond High TPS
QuarkChain has pointed out that there are other projects that have transaction per second rates that are greater than the Visa 65k per second, but then go on to point out that TPS isn’t the only metric that needs to be considered in a network.
The QuarkChain team specifically mentions Alipay, which has reached 200,000 transactions per second, but has done so by sacrificing decentralization and security. QuarkChain is aiming for scalability that includes decentralization and security, making it a superior network, if the team is successful.
Why QuarkChain is Different
Besides its focus on fast throughput, there are other features of the QuarkChain network that make it different from other decentralized blockchain projects.
One of these features is the incentivization of weak miners to participate in the network without joining a mining pool. This incentive is based on game theory and works by giving miners an incentive for distributing hash power equally among the shards. This also increases decentralization.
Another way that decentralization is encouraged is through the use of multiple cheap nodes which are joined in a cluster to make a super-full node. By using cheap nodes in clusters to create super-full nodes, the project avoids the high expenses that super-full nodes are subject to in high transaction per second environments.
The network increases security by providing every transaction with the protection of 50% of the network hash power. By combining this protection with network decentralization it becomes nearly impossible for a bad actor to conduct a double-spending attack.
The structure of QuarkChain is reliant on two layers. The first layer consists of sharding blockchains, called shards, and the second layer is the root blockchain which is used to confirm shards blocks and provide security for the entire network.
QuarkChain has also built-in support for cross-shard transactions, and was built so that one account can be used for all the shards. It was also designed so that a single smart wallet is used to hold all the cryptocurrencies that can be associated with various shards.
The benefit of the cross-shard transactions is that they can be issued anytime, and can be confirmed within minutes. The cross-shard transaction throughput also increases linearly as the number of total shards increases, providing scalability.
How to get Involved with QuarkChain
QuarkChain has offered several ways for the community to get involved in the project. The testnet for the project was only launched in May 2018, but prior to the launch they actively recruited 100 volunteers from the community to act as beta testers. It also welcomes anyone with blockchain development experience and a strong technical background to get involved in the project.
On September 17, 2018 the team made their code open source on Github
so that anyone can inspect it. Further, they are running a developers contest to see who can build a QuarkChain testnet by running their own nodes/clusters and achieve the greatest transactions per second utilizing a provided load test. The winner will receive 1 BTC, with additional prizes for places 2 through 10.
Currently, the peak testnet performance is 14,755.25 transactions per second.
QuarkChain Tokens (QKC)
QuarkChain tokens have the ticker symbol QKC and they are currently ERC-20 compatible tokens on the Ethereum blockchain. Once the QuarkChain mainnet is launched these will be converted to native tokens through a premine, and in the future miners will produce QKC tokens.
QuarkChain held their ICO in June 2018, raising $20 million at a token price of $0.0197. There was a total of 10 billion tokens created, with 20% allocated to the ICO sale. The rest of the tokens were allocated as follows: 15% to the development team, 5% to the project advisors, and 15% for the QuarkChain foundation.
The remaining 45% is to be allocated for marketing, mining and to the community. It’s already been noted by the QuarkChain team that mining is likely to create some inflation in the future.
2018 has seen a massive focus on scalability issues from across the blockchain ecosystem. While there are several other projects looking to solve the scalability problem, the QuarkChain sharding solution is on track to create a blockchain free of scalability issues.
If they accomplish this it would be a great breakthrough for blockchain technology, since many of the planned applications using blockchain technology are hampered by issues of scalability.
It’s true that the project is still very much in development, but they have made great progress, and have been hitting their projected completion dates with regularity. This leads to confidence in the team and the project, and if the mainnet launches before the end of 2018 this could become one of the most talked about blockchain projects in 2019.
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