Telegram’s blockchain takes on Cosmos and Polkadot

Robert Hoogendoorn
Jun 23 · 2 min read

The Telegram Open Network (TON) will compete with blockchain inter-operability platforms like Cosmos and Polkadot. Even Ethereum 2.0, which is scheduled for launch in early 2020, can be considered direct competition for the in-house made blockchain tools by Telegram. These assumptions are made based on released documentation on the TON platform.

Telegram is already being used by 300 million users worldwide. The anonymous chat platform is end-to-end encrypted with in-house developed software, and the addition of the TON blockchain such make the network even more secure. Because Telegram is already millions of users, it has a clear advantage over the competition.

Currently no blockchain has 300 million users, and Ethereum — for example — is already running into scalability issues. Many blockchain projects have not been build to accommodate high volume transactions. Some believe that the Proof-of-Work (PoW) protocol, used by Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and many others, should be abandoned in favor of the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) protocol.

Polkadot, Cosmos and the highly anticipated Ethereum 2.0 release are all based on some form of the PoS consensus model. TON will be using PoS as well, combined with something that’s called ‘sharding’. Simply said, sharding is cutting the blockchain network into pieces where all data sets gets its own independent blockchain, while still sharing data in between these independent chains. This should be easier to scale, because developers can keep adding new shards without hindering the transaction speed.

Transaction speed is a big issue for blockchain companies. When you want bitcoin to be used as a mainstream payment tool, it should be capable to compete with VISA in terms of speed. VISA can handle around 45.000 transactions per second (tps). Bitcoin and Ethereum can only handle 7 and 15 transactions per second respectively.

That’s why distributed ledger technology (DLT) on top of existing blockchains is becoming such a hot topic. That’s how the Lightning Network is capable of increasing the transaction speed for bitcoin, as it adds another layer. These are solutions for a problem that TON is trying to tackle even before its launched.

Cosmos and Polkadot have a solution to connect blockchains and to increase transaction speed. But the TON blockchain already has 300 million users, and that makes Telegram’s Open Network a force to be reckoned with. Telegram is expected to launch the TON blockchain in the third quarter of this year.

Originally published at NEDEROB.