Introducing the ERC20 to ERC20 TokenBridge

The wait is finally over! POA Network has been working hard behind the scenes to advance our interoperability protocol. On May 9th 2018, we released the first production cross-chain bridge in history, the POA Bridge. Using this bridge, users can convert their POA tokens on the POA network to POA20 tokens on the Ethereum network. This was the first milestone in our long-term vision for blockchain interoperability.

Since then we have been working on further advancements and updates to the bridge framework. We are excited to announce a new kind of bridge: The ERC20 to ERC20 TokenBridge.

What is the ERC20 to ERC20 TokenBridge?

The ERC20 to ERC20 TokenBridge allows users to transform ERC20 tokens from one EVM (Ethereum Virtual Machine) based blockchain network to another EVM based network within ONE user’s wallet. Tokens are locked in one network, and a representation of them is minted on the other network. Users can store, exchange, and spend these tokens using any ERC20 compatible wallet.

How is the ERC20 to ERC20 bridge different from the POA Bridge that was launched in May 2018?

The POA Bridge is strictly designed for use with the POA Network. It allows users to swap their POA native tokens, that exist only within the POA Network, to POA20 tokens that exist only within the Ethereum network. The bridge is bilateral; transformations can be done in either direction with speed and cost efficiency. The ERC20 to ERC20 bridge functions in a similar manner — but instead of operating with coins and tokens belonging specifically to the POA Network, it can operate with tokens emitted by ANY project that exists on the Ethereum network. Ethereum based networks can now interact with one another by transforming ERC20 tokens back and forth.

Who are the validators when an instance of ERC20 to ERC20 TokenBridge is deployed?

Each project deploying the bridge must account for its own validators. It’s absolutely necessary for the project(s) to identify the set of individuals/nodes assigned to validate the bridge transactions. It’s important to note validators are required as part of any bridge launch.

For example, when we launched the POA Bridge in May 2018, we took a small subset of the entire group of validators and assigned them to also validate POA Bridge transactions. Similarly, for the ERC20 to ERC20 bridge, a group of validators must be assigned to validate any bridge related transactions.

What are some use cases for the ERC20 to ERC20 TokenBridge?

There are quite a few use cases for this new and unique type of bridge. With this technology, projects can leverage a sidechain for faster transactions and cheaper gas costs. They simply shift their circulation of tokens from their main net, where transactions cost more and take more time to complete, and seamlessly move them over to a sidechain. We have already worked with four projects to implement this solution.

Swarm City used the ERC20 to ERC20 Bridge to move the tokens from the Ethereum mainnet to the Kovan testnet.

At swarm city we see it as our mission to bring amazing decentralized tech like Ethereum to the masses. Currently, Ethereum is still in its early days, yet we don’t want our communities to wait on usable tech. POA created a solution to bridge Ethereum networks, so we can use them to do transactions on, and then resolve them on the mainnet. This keeps transaction costs down.

Swarm City is a community of early adopters in crypto, and we are not afraid to test out new concepts. That’s why POA and Swarm City are a natural match to progress the state of DApps together. Swarm City is proud to be using POA’s bridging solution to make our economy work as soon as possible.” — kingflurkel, Swarm City Architect.

We have also worked with Sentinel Chain in their implementation of the bridge who are using it to transform SENC tokens between different chains and networks.

“We have been working closely with the extremely talented POA team in deploying POA’s ERC20-to-ERC20 Bridge to Sentinel Chain.

As Sentinel is designed to be a consortium side-chain to Ethereum, the bridge will allow other ERC20 tokens, besides SENC, to be transferred between Sentinel Chain and any other EVM-based blockchains.” — Roy Lai, Founder & CEO, Sentinel Chain & InfoCorp Technologies.

Virtue Poker has implemented the TokenBridge in order to eliminate expensive transactions and make use of their sidechain.

“After spending months researching various Level 2 scaling solutions, the Virtue Poker team is pleased to be partnering with the forward looking POA Network to aide in our efforts to bring decentralized poker to the globe. The use of the POA bridge in tandem with our own sidechain network enables Virtue Poker to eliminate costly on-chain Ethereum transactions in relation to hand result data. This will minimize Ethereum gas costs by only requiring main network transactions when a player wishes to enter and exit our sidechain via the POA bridge.

This will allow the Virtue Poker platform to launch at scale, in a condensed timeframe and and more importantly at a low cost to players. We are excited to continue to work with the POA team, and are looking forward to a future with scalable Ethereum DApps.” — Ryan Gittleson CEO and Co-Founder of Virtue Poker.

Colu Network have partnered up with POA Network to integrate the TokenBridge and allow them to connect Ethereum mainnet to their own new sidechain

“We are proud to partner with POA Network on the integration of their ERC20 bridge that links sidechains with Ethereum’s mainnet. A POA sidechain will allow us to scale our growth for our ongoing complimentary currency projects that are looking for production-ready solutions, this partnership helps us get a step closer to our goals.” — Mark Smargon, VP Blockchain, CLN Network.

POA Network is currently working with several more projects implementing this technology as a solution to two of the main issues that currently exist within the Ethereum network: high gas costs & network congestion/scalability.

For more information about the ERC20 to ERC20 bridge, you can access our step by step instructions on GitHub or contact us via Gitter.

Warmly,
POA Network Team

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