Decentralizing Digital Services, Kik’s ICO Bears a Sustainable Development Platform for the Future of the Digital World
Kik serves as a messaging app and is particularly popular among teens and young people in North America. The company based in Canada, claims 300 million registered users and among those users are 40% of American teens. Kik will be the most used digital service ever to venture into an ICO, and after fundraising efforts in 2015, the company was valued at $1 billion. This makes Kik the most financially backed company to host a token sale.
ICO’s (Initial Coin Offerings) are a way for cryptocurrency companies to raise funds independently from investments by big VC firms that normally fund tech startups. Companies like Kik use ICO’s to raise capital and also to develop business ventures. Kik’s ICO will serve as the fundraiser for the development of the general purpose cryptocurrency, Kin. (This is kind of weak statement.. Kin will be the administrative tool but the funds will be used to develop their platform?)
Kik’s Founder, Ted Livingston, envisions a sustainable digital ecosystem using a general purpose cryptocurrency, Kin. Kin will serve as the cryptocurrency for all of the facets of the messaging app, consequently bolstering the value of Kin tokens because of the millions of Kik users. Kik will be the first digital service to employ the currency, but Livingston hopes that other developers follow suit and employ the use of the new cryptocurrency. Livingston’s motivation behind all of this comes from the current digital service ecosystem created and dominated by Facebook. The advertisement focus of Facebook has crippled other digital companies because of a “copy and crush” tactic that Livingston discusses in an interview with TechCrunch. The attempts to copy Snapchat features by other companies including Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp have reached absurdity according to Livingston. So how does Kik’s CEO plan to give new developers a chance against these massive companies?
Livingston imagines a new ecosystem, predicated not on advertising but on a community based cryptocurrency that incentivizes development with daily rewards. The Kin Rewards Engine is just that; Kik designers have developed an innovative crypto economic structure in order to promote the use of Kin as a common currency. The goal of this economic design is to naturally incentivize other developers to use Kin as a currency, and in doing so establishing Kin as a viable cryptocurrency in the digital world.
A non-profit governance entity for the Kin Ecosystem, The Kin Foundation, will strive to expand and maintain an open ecosystem of digital services for both the consumer and the developer. The end goal of the Kin Foundation will be to transparently facilitate the transition of the Kin Ecosystem into an autonomous and fully decentralized network. Livingston and his team say that they have been planning this since 2011, and with the upcoming expected ICO, plans have finally come to fruition for Kik.