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IOTA Doing Big Things as Microsoft Partnership Announced

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IOTA has been on a tear as of late, with prices more than doubling in the span of a week thanks to favorable headlines and a new partnership with Microsoft.

IOTA Price Levels

IOTA cryptocurrency surged 44% on Sunday to a new record high of $2.02, according to CoinMarketCap. Trade volumes have exceeded $310 million over the past 24 hours, which is equivalent to roughly 26,574 bitcoin. Bitfinex controls about 44% of the daily turnover, with South Korea’s Coinone accounting for roughly 22%.

According to Bitfinex, the IOTA-dollar exchange rate was last seen at $1.97.

At present values, IOTA is capitalized at $5.6 billion. That’s enough for sixth place on the global market cap ranking. The cryptocurrency has added a whopping 400% over the past month, with prices more than doubling over the past seven days.

The technical indicators suggest prices have entered extreme overbought territory. The Relative Strength Index (RSI) recently surged past 90, a clear sign that investor exuberance was controlling the market. That being said, IOTA is one of the most promising cryptocurrencies from a use-case perspective.

IOTA and Microsoft Join Forces for IOT

IOTA has been making waves recently by signing major partnerships with some of the world’s leading enterprises. Last week, the German-based startup announced a new partnership with Microsoft, Accenture and nearly two-dozen other companies to develop a blockchain solution tied to the Internet of Things (IOT). It has also been reported that the IOTA Foundation has partnered with Cisco, Volkswagen and Samsung around its Data Marketplace.

IOT is considered by many to be the digital economy’s next game changer, with Cisco Systems Inc. already touting it as the $19 trillion opportunity. This number is spread across five key areas, including capital efficiency, increased productivity, supply-chain improvements, better customer service and new technology innovations as a result of IOT integration.

The Internet of Things simply refers to the extension of the internet to the physical world through embedded technology. It is expected that 50 billion devices will connect to the internet by 2020, making IOT a highly lucrative opportunity. The IOTA Foundation says this figure will rise to 75 billion over the next decade.

IOTA is capitalizing on this phenomenon through Data Marketplace, a comprehensive pilot project that aims to decentralize global data flows. IOTA founder David Sønstebø recently blogged that “Data is one of the most imperative ingredients in the machine economy and the connected world.”

Data is considered the ‘new oil’ of the digital economy, so much so that a new breed of data science is being developed to exploit it. Data analytics is already a multi-billion-dollar industry, with major institutions seeking new ways to monetize data flows.

Data Marketplace will enable businesses to distribute and monetize data via blockchain technology. IOTA goes beyond standard blockchain protocols to offer free transactions through a system called Tangle. This is possible because IOTA is a DAG-based cryptocurrency that does not require mining capacity. For this reason, it is commonly marketed as the next generation blockchain. In fact, depending on who you ask, Tangle is not blockchain at all and is superior in almost every way.

Even then, Tangle is a highly touted architecture within the blockchain community, with Microsoft crypto specialist Omkar Naik hailing it as a key development in the creation of a connected world. On a practical level, it overcomes many of the scalability issues facing current blockchain protocols.

2018 is shaping up to be a big year for IOTA. The Data Marketplace demo is expected to run until January, with the IOTA Foundation promising a series of case studies showcasing its implementation.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. 

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.6 stars on average, based on 504 rated postsSam Bourgi is Chief Editor to Hacked.com, where he specializes in cryptocurrency, economics and the broader financial markets. Sam has nearly eight years of progressive experience as an analyst, writer and financial market commentator where he has contributed to the world's foremost newscasts.




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VeChain Price Grows 12% Ahead of Binance Token Swap

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VeChain (VEN) is set to officially depart the Ethereum network in the next few days, as Binance readies for the token swap which will see VEN tokens become VET (VeChain Thor) coins.

VeChain’s price has grown in the lead up to the swap, gaining 12% over the last 24 hours and breaking into the $1 billion section of the market cap high-flyers club. Beginning the day at a price of $1.62, VEN raced to $1.86 – marking 15% growth in a day when most of the market was somewhat stagnant.

That peak for the day has since settled down at around $1.81 at the time of writing, marking 12% net gains over the day.

Many VeChain holders thought the gig was up following 23% losses between July 17th and July 20th, and while VEN’s price hasn’t recovered to its former high, its reversal over the last 24 hours has been sudden and stark.

Binance Carries Out VEN Token Swap

The departure of VeChain from the Ethereum network to its own blockchain is due to finalise tomorrow, with Binance carrying out the token swap. According to the Binance support article, VEN holders have until tomorrow to move their funds to the exchange, at which point the mainnet swap will commence.

Trades will be stopped on the 23rd, with a snapshot of the wallet balances occuring at the same time. Binance expect trades to commence on the 25th of the month, when VEN tokens shall be no longer. The upgrade to a proprietary blockchain will bring with it a new coin, namely the VET (VeChain Thor) coin – accompanied by new trading pairs. As Binance state:

“Trading will open for the new VET/BTC, VET/ETH, VET/BNB and VET/USDT trading pairs at 2018/07/25 4:00 AM (UTC). Deposits and withdrawals for VET will also be opened at this time. Please note: Once trading opens in the new VET trading pairs, all prior VEN trading pairs will be delisted from the exchange.”

VeChain Thor X-Nodes

To celebrate the one-year anniversary of the VeChain launch, and to mark the emigration to their sole blockchain, the VeChain Thor team are holding a lottery for the network’s X-Node operators – details of which can be found here.

X-Nodes appear to be another variation on the masternode idea, except the VeChain Thor protocol allows node operators to also take part in the mining process. This apparently speeds up the network to a greater degree; but ultimately sacrifices some decentralization in the process.

One VEN token will be worth 100 VET, and it currently requires 15,600,000 VET to run an X-Node. That equates to an initial stake requirement of around $280,000 after the token swap. Such incentivization has been used to great effect on the likes of Dash and PivX on their masternode systems, while other versions of the same thing can be found in Tron’s super-representatives, and EOS’s block producers.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. 

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.5 stars on average, based on 26 rated postsGreg Thomson is a full-time crypto writer and digital nomad. He eats ICOs for breakfast and bleeds altcoins. Wherever he lays his public key is his home.




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KIN Token Sees 20% Price Jump Following Wallet Launch

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Kin (KIN) spiked 20% today amid a general market slowdown, and excluding one uncharacteristic spike in mid-May, the Kik-based token has now soared past weekly, monthly and quarterly highs.

KIN token charts

Kin began the day on a steady climb, going from $0.000177 at 6pm (UTC) last night, to the current price of $0.000214. That’s a hike in value of just over one fifth, and Kin quite appropriately climbed around ten places in market cap rankings in the process.

On the Up

The weekly gains for Kin are even more spectacular – 50% growth in just under seven days. The monthly gains are only 40%, reflecting the long slow dip of June. The return to today’s price of $0.000214 sends Kin back to its mid-April price, at a time when the market was considered somewhat bullish.

In fact, Kin’s long term charts show a pattern repeating itself, and it’s one which Bitcoin also seems to be following. We saw a short spike in February, followed by a dip in March. We then saw a month-long bull run throughout April, which was then promptly wiped out in May and June. Now it looks like we’re in for another ‘mini-spike’, so the question now becomes – how big will it be? If the previous ratios of decline continue to play out, it will mean the next ‘peak’ for Bitcoin will be $8,000, with subsequent spikes then descending up until the next, you know… big spike.

Beta Wallet Launches

The mobile messenger app, Kik, is the firm behind the KIN token, which is set to function as a cryptocurrency reward for users of the platform who engage with the transparent advertisements contained therein.

The idea is one you may have heard a lot about recently – foregoing traditional consumer advertising in return for a direct transactional link between advertiser, publisher and consumer. It has previously been called ‘human mining’ since the receipt of the cryptocurrency requires some basic human interaction, such as watching an ad, completing a quiz, etc.

The beta-wallet for the Kin cryptocurrency was released in the last 72 hours on iOS and Android, and the token’s market performance has not been hurt by it. The Kinit wallet apparently allows its users to earn several dollars worth of KIN on a daily basis, which can then be spent on various items in-app.

The PR statement from the Kin team elaborated on some of the Kinit wallet’s functions, saying:

Kinit is a fun, easy way to earn Kin, a new cryptocurrency made for your digital life. Earning Kin is just like playing a game, only better, because you get rewarded for completing fun daily activities like surveys, quizzes, interactive videos and more.”

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. 

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.5 stars on average, based on 26 rated postsGreg Thomson is a full-time crypto writer and digital nomad. He eats ICOs for breakfast and bleeds altcoins. Wherever he lays his public key is his home.




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ZenCash Price Sees Strong Performance After Supernode Upgrade

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ZenCash (ZEN) is one of the small handful of coins in the market cap top-100 to have recorded clear gains over the last twenty-four hours, as most of the altcoins struggle to maintain Bitcoin’s relative stability.

ZEN coins are currently up around 4% for the day, climbing from a price of $27.90 yesterday to the current value of $29.98 this morning. That doesn’t necessarily tell the whole tale however, as ZenCash has been fluctuating wildly all day long.

At one point in the last twenty-four hours ZEN coins peaked at $31.95, before falling back down to $28.31. A couple of hours later and the coin jumped back up to $31.16, before eventually levelling out.

Even at the current retracement, ZenCash is still up a ridiculous 39.9% for the week, after climbing from July 13th’s valuation of $20.71. The monthly numbers are even better – showing a 48% growth over the space of thirty days since June 20th’s price of $19.52.

We could probably count on one hand the number of coins in the top-100 to have recovered their valuations for the month, and ZenCash – unexpectedly perhaps – is among them.

Supernode Upgrade

The official ZenCash Twitter team have had a lot to announce in the last twenty-four hours, will an upgrade to their network having just recently been completed. The upgrade targeted many areas of the protocol, but perhaps the biggest difference is the addition of ‘supernodes’.

The Twitter team dropped the following announcement less than twenty hours ago:

“It’s a wrap! Zen’s mandatory software upgrade executed flawlessly! The updated software included significant code improvements and adjusted the rewards to add a new node class: Super Nodes. Special thanks to our miners and node operators!”

Perhaps the best explanation of supernodes comes from ZenCash themselves, in what sounds like a juiced-up version of masternode operators:

“Like Secure Nodes, the Super Node network has enhanced point-to-point encryption. Super Nodes will be tasked with managing key network and system functions such as hosting multiple services on sidechains, tracking and measuring Secure Node uptime, and queuing the node payment schedule for miners.”

Supernode Requirements

ZEN’s supernodes come with many of the same technical requirements as masternodes, although the hardware specifications are not necessarily as beefy as one would assume.

ZenCash say that just 8GB of RAM is required to run a supernode, along with a 100GB storage space. Likewise, a multi-core CPU is hardly an expensive purchase in this day and age, while the requirement to be online and running 96% of the time is actually a lot less than many masternodes, which often demand 99-100% uptime.

According to this tweet from the ZEN team, supernodes are up and running and ready to earn 10% of the block rewards:

“Super Node earnings start TODAY. Thanks for helping us test the servers and infrastructure during the ramp-up period!”

Ultimately, the success of ZenCash’s upgrade appears to have given them legs when most of the market has lost theirs.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. 

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.5 stars on average, based on 26 rated postsGreg Thomson is a full-time crypto writer and digital nomad. He eats ICOs for breakfast and bleeds altcoins. Wherever he lays his public key is his home.




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