TL;DR: 2019 was great, 2020 will be remarkable!
2019 was a formative year for Beam, building a solid foundation of a multitude of products from the very launch. This is not a full list of the year’s achievements:
- Beam wallet: desktop (Mac, Win, Linux), mobile (iOS, Android), so that you, dear users can confidentially send and receive Beam in an easy way
- Beam wallet API: to power the integrations with mining pools, exchanges, and payment gateways
- Beam Atomic Swaps Marketplace (in Beta): to empower confidential exchange of Beams with BTC, LTC, and QTUM; the first privacy coin ever to achieve that.
- Tons of POC, each of which will get its own lane in 2020 roadmap: adapting Lelantus to Mimblewimble to break linkability and support offline sending of funds, Lightning for instant payments, Hardware wallets support, Beam Anywhere (a.k.a. Beam Web wallet as a browser plugin)
- We’ve revamped our website 3 times to continuously broadcast and reflect what’s going on as Beam grows
- We’ve successfully completed a hard fork and straight after the 2020 New Year celebration had our first halving
- We’ve shipped over 65 releases across all our projects and platforms.
Governance and Community
- As planned from the get-go, on November 25 we have announced the establishment of a non-profit Beam Foundation that is taking over the governance of the protocol as we speak.
- The Foundation is run by an independent Board and it will be deploying the Treasury funds to continue further development and innovation of Beam protocol.
- We are actively communicating with our 50K-strong community members across various platforms. With time, the Foundation will promote more and more community involvement in governance process.
Nice, but what’s up for 2020?
Well, as 2019 shows, every plan is subject to change. Therefore, instead of making long plans into what we can find under the 2021 New Year tree, we’d prefer to communicate our short- and midterm plans. We’ll walk you through the diagram below, lane by lane:
- We will launch a family of products that will serve as a foundation for the Beam Confidential DeFi Ecosystem(again, the first of its kind in the space):
Before the fork
- Atomic Swap marketplace will leave Beta with numerous UX fixes and API for market-makers. This will improve the liquidity and make it possible for anyone to exchange Beam for BTC, LTC, QTUM (or vise versa) confidentially, without intermediaries and with no counterparty risk
- Laser Beam — our Instant payments technology to eventually enable instant immediate payments, micro payments and “streaming” money use cases.
- Exchange rates to fiat and selected cryptocurrencies will be displayed in the Beam wallet, so you can always know how much your Beam is worth if converted to those currencies.
After the fork
- Web Wallet and Wallet Service API is going to be the focal point of the DeFi ecosystem, bringing Beam to every browser (and to 3rd party wallets integrations) with great user experience and without sacrificing users’ privacy
- Confidential Assets on Beam will allow anyone to create and transact new kinds of tokens on the Beam blockchain. These new tokens will have the same confidentiality and great user experience as the native Beam coin. Naturally, support for multiple token types will be added to Beam Wallet.
- Bridges to Ethereum will allow creating Beam representation of certain ERC20 tokens and creating 1-to-1 pegs of such ERC20 tokens to their representation on Beam blockchain. For example, users will be able to lock a certain amount of Dai in the Bridge’s smart contract, and get the exact same amount of bDai on the Beam Blockchain. The bDai tokens can be freely transacted between Beam wallets, and can also be transferred back to Dai at any moment. Multiple types of tokens will be supported, and more tokens can be added in the future by Bridge operators. In the more distant future, we may consider developing bridges to other blockchains besides Ethereum.
- Wallet Auditability — an opt-in feature in the wallet that will allow institutional and business users to seamlessly report their transactions to third parties of their choice.
- DeFi Building Blocks. Based on Scriptless scripts technology, we will develop primitives to enable certain kinds of DeFi applications on Beam — think of Collateralized Debt Positions (CDP), lending, STO and more.
- Following the development of the Bridges, it will be possible to create Sidechains that will support complementary advanced technologies such as smart contracts with EOS, Ethereum, etc
- Lelantus MW will be released on Mainnet. Lelantus MW dramatically increases the UTXO anonymity set and makes it virtually impossible to establish links between different UTXOs.
- One-side payments. Based on Leantus MW technology, one-sided payments will allow sending and receiving Beam without Mimblewimble’s interactivity requirement. Today, the receiver must come online at most 12 hours after a transaction is initiated, which may be inconvenient at times. One-sided payments remove that need.
- Tor/i2P will enhance layer 0 privacy beyond Dandelion++
- Dandelion is currently used by the nodes when broadcasting transactions to the network. However, the SBBS messages are currently sent directly by the originator. SBBS over Dandelion will help to obfuscate every message sender.
- Mixnet integration to further enhance layer 0 privacy
- Ledger and Trezor support. Bringing Beam to Ledger and Trezor hardware wallets turned out to be a complex task. We spent a lot of effort on that during 2019, and we are committed to making it happen. We have recently done a lot of progress in reducing the memory footprint and computational complexity of Beam integration, which will allow support of the most popular Ledger and Trezor models.
- Multisig support will allow committing transactions only when approved by multiple signatures. Standard “M out of N” schemes will be implemented.
- We want to remove the current limitation of not using the same seed phrase from several wallets simultaneously, so at first, we’ll enable sync of balance and transactions history; later on, full sync (addresses, full transaction data) will be implemented
- Notifications about the new version for desktop wallets will come handy so you’ll always be up-to-date
- Beamhash III will be the final Beam POW algorithm. BeamHash III is a proof of work designed to create a smooth transition from GPU mining to asics in the future. While perfectly fitted to today’s capacities of GPUs, especially their memory bandwidth, it also will allow rather simple and cost-efficient asic designs. Compared with the current BeamHash II algorithm the performance of BeamHash III is more independent of the underlying GPU architecture and less energy-consuming. Furthermore, upcoming Asics may be produced using a more power and cost-efficient chip design as well.
- GhostDAG consensus upgrade, when activated, will enable much better mining decentralization, faster confirmation on L1 (seconds) and much higher throughput (Transactions/sec), which will serve to keep fees low even when demand for Beam and Beam’s CAs will soar.
We will continue to live up to our values of honesty, technology leadership and great usability, actively engage with our community and collaborate with other worthy projects in the space. 2020 is gonna be remarkable!
Come discover Beam and join our community!
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