Bitcoin’s Liquid Sidechain Makes a Splash on Bitfinex

Embattled Bitfinex has announced the integration of Blockstream’s Bitcoin sidechain, the Liquid Network. The upgrade is already seeing users …
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Georgi Georgiev| May 10, 2019 | 11:00


Embattled Bitfinex has announced the integration of Blockstream’s Bitcoin sidechain, the Liquid Network. The upgrade is already seeing users impressed with faster and more private transactions.


Bitcoin Liquid Integrated At Bitfinex

One of the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, Bitfinex, has announced the integration of Blockstream’s Liquid Network.

The Liquid Network is an inter-exchange settlement network which links together cryptocurrency exchanges and institutions in order to enable quicker Bitcoin transactions, as well as the issuance of digital assets.

According to the official announcement, the integration will allow for tighter exchange spreads, faster trading, as well as improved confidentiality.

Speaking on the matter was Paolo Ardoino, CTO at Bitfinex, who outlined:

Issuing Bitcoin, stablecoins, and various other digital assets under one blockchain platform makes a lot of sense. […] It reduces the integration burden for an exchange like ourselves, and traders can manage all their assets from a single wallet application. We’re excited to be active on the Liquid Network, and we’re looking forward to watching it develop.

Results Are Already Showing

The integration of Liquid is already proving to be worthwhile, according to derivatives trader Federico (@Federico_Xmas), who noted:

Just tried transferring BTC from TheRockTrading to Bitfinex using Blockstream Liquid, the transaction was executed and confirmed in less than 5 minutes, and best of all the amount is confidential to outside observers. Congrats to both exchanges and all other people involved.

Just tried transferring BTC from @TheRockTrading to @bitfinex using @Blockstream Liquid, the transaction was executed and confirmed in less than 5 minutes, and best of all the amount is confidential to outside observers. Congrats to both exchanges and all other people involved 👏

— Federico 🎅 (@Federico_Xmas) May 9, 2019

Unlike Bitcoin’s public blockchain, transactions carried out on liquid are private by default. This means that the amounts, as well as the types of assets transacted, are hidden from third parties.

Liquid Network Gaining Traction

Launched in October 2018, the Liquid Network is quickly gaining traction all throughout the space. According to a recent blog post, the network has added 14 new members, including Bluefire Capital, Huobi, OpenNode, Gate.io, and others.

liquid bitcoin

Moreover, the company has revealed that further integrations are also going to go live in the coming weeks. Perhaps one of the more interesting upcoming developments is the fact that BitMEX is also working with Blockstream to support L-BTC deposits and withdrawals.

Additionally, Tether (USDT), and Stably (USDS) have also revealed plans to launch on Liquid.

Back in March, Blockstream also released a user-geared wallet for its Liquid sidechain asset called Liquid Bitcoin (L-BTC).

Bitfinex meanwhile was recently served with a court order by the New York Attorney General, alleging a cover-up of $850 million in losses. While no charges are being sought at the time, the exchange says it’ll fight the ‘false assertions.’

What do you think of Bitfinex integrating Liquid? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock

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Blockchain in Telecommunication and Post Services Market Research Report is Impacting in …

Microsoft Corporation, IBM Corporation, Juniper Networks Inc., SAP SE, Accenture Plc, Coinbase, Blockchain Tech Ltd, Earthport PLC, BitFury Group …

Blockchain in telecommunication and post services is used for applications such as promoting, smart contracts, roaming services, and identity as a service. Major features driving the blockchain in telecommunication and post services market is the amplified use of blockchain in telecommunication and post services for designing crypto-currencies, and secure platform for financial transactions. The blockchain technology is being accepted in various industries and applications due to its secured transaction process. Blockchain is an evolving technology that continues a decentralized record of historical records by the uninterrupted formation of blocks in a chain. It is an open ledger that competently stores and manages businesses made between two individuals.

Companies Profiled in this Report includes,

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Atomic Swap: Presented by Decred and Zebpay

Decred is a community-directed digital currency designed to be a superior store of value for generations to come. Its hybrid PoW+PoS consensus …

Ditto PR and The Block are delighted to host “Atomic Swap” on Wednesday, May 15 in NYC during NYC Blockchain Week. In the words of Ditto PR founder Trey Ditto: “Speculative investments? Yawn. Crypto as a transformative technology? Been there, done that. Join @DittoPA and @TheBlock__ at #AtomicSwapNYC to be part of a new conversation on blockchain and crypto as a social and political movement.”

We are thrilled that a unique group of leading companies, projects and people will be sharing insights on crypto through a very different lens than every other conference.

Atomic Swap is possible due to the generous support of Decred and Zebpay, two projects that have been terrific partners to Ditto PR in preparation for the event. Through their support, Atomic Swap has been able to attract an audience of 200 leaders from the crypto ecosystem who will challenge and engage with the ideas throughout the day.

Decred is a community-directed digital currency designed to be a superior store of value for generations to come. Its hybrid PoW+PoS consensus mechanism, transparent proposal and voting system, and continually funded treasury make it secure, adaptable, and self-sustaining. Decred’s unique governance system is inclusive and decentralized, designed to empower stakeholders to collectively make and change the rules. The team launched its off-chain proposal system Politeia in late 2018. Since then, community members have voted to create a DEX, hire a PR firm (Ditto), deploy Lightning Network testnet, and further decentralize the Treasury.

Zebpay is a crypto exchange operating out of Singapore used by over 3M crypto traders in over 132 countries and supports fiat to crypto trading. The team just launched trading services in Australia and has opened a new office in Melbourne this week on the heels of a busy winter with the deployment of Lightning Network transactions and scraping trading fees to zero for all users.
Ditto PR, The Block, Decred and Zebpay look forward to meeting you next week at #AtomicSwapNYC!

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IBM’s Stephen Rogers addresses BiTA on transport’s adoption of blockchain

Now the relationship is growing deeper: yesterday, an IBM executive reported on his company’s research into blockchain for transportation to BiTA’s …

IBM’s technologists overcame more than a year of legal wrangling with the company’s intellectual property attorneys and were finally able to join the Blockchain in Transport Alliance (BiTA). Now the relationship is growing deeper: yesterday, an IBM executive reported on his company’s research into blockchain for transportation to BiTA’s members.

BiTA is a member-led industry organization dedicated to building open-source and royalty-free data standards for blockchain in the transportation and logistics industry. At Thursday’s BiTA Spring Symposium, which followed Transparency19 in Atlanta, IBM’s vice president of blockchain initiatives for the supply chain Stephen Rogers spoke to the assembled membership and working groups.

IBM has already proven its leadership in the ‘blockchain for the supply chain’ space. FreightWaves reported on TradeLens, IBM and Maersk’s joint project to solve inefficiencies in container shipping last August; at roughly the same time IBM opened up IBM Food Trust, which began as a pilot project to create visibility into Walmart’s leafy green supply chain.

“It took a year between the business side and legal side to get here. The legal side kept saying there are risks, there are risks, but we’re here, and that makes me the happiest person in the world,” Rogers began. IBM’s in-house research institute, the Institute of Business Value (IBV), has created a virtual library of research reports on blockchain, many of them pertaining to the supply chain. Rogers presented the results of the IBV’s recent research.

One of the more interesting claims that Rogers made early in the talk concerned the relationship between blockchain and the internet of things (IoT)—he said that distinction would start to blur.

“In five years, blockchain will be the operating system for IoT,” Rogers predicted.

The transportation industry faces many challenges, but has a long history of resisting all but the most essential innovations, Rogers argued. Those challenges include physical and digital threats in security, inefficiencies in logistics tracking and payment due to intermediaries, uncertainty and volatility resulting in unforeseen circumstances, and first movers and digital giants entering market and challenging the status quo.

Then Rogers began outlining the results of a large survey of transportation industry executives. The requirements to be a respondent included the following: respondents were limited to the CFO, COO, CTO, and CIO roles; their organizations must be working with or planning to work with blockchain; and the respondents must be familiar with their organization’s blockchain strategy. The survey results included input from executives from 16 countries, and about a third were based in North America.

Although transportation executives believe that they will begin actively participating in blockchain networks on a slightly later time scale than other industries (2020 rather than 2019, the average of other industries the IBV has studied), more executives in transportation said they would be on the blockchain than any other industry.

The first wave of industries studied included banking, financial markets, healthcare, government, and electronics. A little more than half of those executives—53 percent—said that they would be active participants on a blockchain by 2019. But 70 percent of transportation executives said they would be active participants on a blockchain by 2020.

Rogers said that he spoke to an executive at a medium-sized trucking company who said “I’m not going to blockchain anybody, but I think there’s a lot of people who want to blockchain me.” In other words, the executive believed that while his company would not necessarily be an agent of change, he felt like other companies would be knocking on his door and trying to get him to join their networks.

When transportation executives were asked which business functions had the highest potential to be improved through blockchain implementation, 26 percent said shipment status or tracking, 21 percent said payment processing, 20 percent said empty container management, and 20 percent said shipment security management.

About 15 percent of industry participants are ‘first movers’ in the adoption of any new technology, and transportation is similar: 14 percent considered themselves first movers. A nearly unanimous majority of self-identified first movers in transportation — 97 percent — agreed with the statement that they expect blockchain to help remove transactional inefficiencies from the transportation ecosystem.

Rogers identified other potential use cases for blockchain in the supply chain, noting ruefully that the amount of organic food sold in the United States was about twice the amount that was produced in the U.S. or imported. The implication was that immutable ledgers recording the actual conditions under which food was grown, harvested, and transported could reduce fraud.

Other topics covered in Rogers’ talk included reducing supply chain waste from empty containers, accelerating payment cycles, and chain of custody verification for high-value shipments like biopharmaceuticals and luxury goods. Rogers ended his talk by outlining three basic pieces of advices for companies who want to explore blockchain technology.

“Learn intentionally; invest wisely; disrupt strategically,” Rogers said. ““Leaders will dedicate resources to proven blockchain improvements, but transformation requires enterprise-wide investment in fundamentals, including digitizing and instrumenting transport operations.”

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PayPal Is Still Steadfastly ‘Blockchain over Bitcoin’ But Cryptocurrency Pressure Is Growing

PayPal’s perception of Bitcoin, cryptocurrency in general, as well as the underlying blockchain technology, has been quite fluid and ever-changing.

John Rainey, chief financial officer and executive vice president of PayPal Holdings Inc. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

© 2018 Bloomberg Finance LP

Before much was known about cryptocurrencies, PayPal was the go-to for any digital transferring of cash. However, as the mainstream has woken to Bitcoin and its related cryptocurrency industry, the online payments giant has been forced to take note.

PayPal’s perception of Bitcoin, cryptocurrency in general, as well as the underlying blockchain technology, has been quite fluid and ever-changing. There have been suggestions from a co-founder of the company that Bitcoin is a scam, while there have also been recent predictions from a board member that Bitcoin could surge 250 times its current value.

The latest from PayPal, with regards to their stance on the entire ecosystem, is that they are still much more pro blockchain while still not being fully vested in the cryptocurrency side of things; this according to their CFO John Rainey.

A need for maturing

Speaking about the company’s future cryptocurrency plans in an interview with Yahoo Finance, Rainey said:

“We have teams clearly working on blockchain and cryptocurrency as well, and we want to take part in that in whatever form that takes in the future — I just think it’s a little early on right now [for Bitcoin],” Rainey said.

PayPal has dipped a toe into the Bitcoin market before, and perhaps their experience in that very new and raw market was enough to spook them. The firm previously allowed its merchants to accept Bitcoin as a form of payment, but subsequently saw the instability and volatility of the currency.

“If a merchant accepted that [Bitcoin] they would quickly convert it to a more stable currency like the euro or dollar,” Rainey added.

There are a few pieces of evidence to suggest that PayPal, today, is showing signs of interest in getting involved in both blockchain and Bitcoin – the former more so than the latter – because, as the CFO has stated, they want to be a part of whichever is the future.

To this end, the evidence of PayPal’s blockchain involvement is more obvious as most of the growth in the ecosystem currently has been in enterprise blockchain use cases and adoption.

A prime, and recent example, of PayPal’s involvement in the blockchain space is the firm’s investment in a blockchain technology startup known as Cambridge Blockchain. The startup focuses on empowering individuals to decentralize the storage of their online digital identities without requiring intermediaries.

Some cryptocurrency cases

While the investment in Cambridge Blockchain indicates a keen and direct interest in building towards blockchain opportunities for PayPal in the future, there are also some indications that the payment company does not want to move away from any potential cryptocurrency growth, integration, and adoption.

Patents seem to be one way in which PayPal is looking to keep abreast of the space with the firm, In mid-April of this year, winning a cybersecurity patent for a system entitled: “Techniques for cryptocurrency ransomware detection and mitigation.” The intention with this patent is to improve the detection of ransomware and prevent it from locking up users’ access to their files.

Even more relevant to the blockchains space is, last year, PayPal filed another patent to increase the speed of cryptocurrency payments by using secondary private keys to reduce wait times for transactions between merchants and consumers.

Rightly Blockchain over Bitcoin

The notion of ‘blockchain over Bitcoin’ is not that unusual. Many institutionalised, or traditional, enterprises and organisations have quickly noted the benefits of blockchain technology, but have in the same breath expressed their concerns over the speculative cryptocurrency space.

However, a lot of these concerns and the questioning of Bitcoin and the related cryptocurrencies has to do with the maturation of the market. Bitcoin has only come into the mainstream spotlight in the last two or three years and in that time there has been a notable speculators bubble that burst.

PayPal has felt the sting of the immature market before, which was prone to such swings of volatility that in their experience merchants were racing to be rid of the ever-changing asset. Conversely, blockchain, as more of a pure technology, does not have to have the direct financial ties to cryptocurrency and thus is far more enticing to companies and enterprises that are looking to utilize it as a tool for efficiency and growth.

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