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What Is IOTA (MIOTA)?
IOTA (MIOTA) is a distributed ledger with one big difference: it isn’t a blockchain. Instead, its proprietary technology is Tangle, a node system that confirms transactions. The foundation behind this platform says this offers far greater speeds than conventional blockchains — and an ideal footprint for the ever-expanding Internet of Things ecosystem.
Check out our deep dive into IOTA to learn more about this project.
Because there’s no blockchain, there are no miners, and there are no fees because there are no miners. Many established networks see costs balloon when congestion intensifies, but IOTA aims to provide limitless throughput at minimal expense.
In time, IOTA’s goal is to become the de-facto platform for executing transactions between IoT devices. Estimates suggest that there could be 20.4 billion such devices by 2024. This could be big business.
The team behind IOTA believe that the potential use cases don’t end here. They believe their distributed ledger could deliver digital identities to all, result in car insurance policies based on actual usage, pave the way for cutting-edge smart cities, deliver seamless global trade, and prove products’ authenticity.
Originally known as Jinn, a crowd sale for the project was held in September 2014, and the network officially launched in 2016.
Who Are the Founders of IOTA?
IOTA has four co-founders, and their names are Sergey Ivancheglo, Serguei Popov, David Sønstebø and Dominik Schiener.
According to the IOTA Foundation, the initiative has rapidly grown since then — and team members are now based across more than 25 countries.
Sonstebo and Schiener are co-chairmen of the board of directors, while Popov is a board member and the foundation’s research director.
Ivancheglo resigned from the Berlin-based project in June 2019 but continues as an unofficial advisor. He said in a statement: “I no longer believe that the IOTA Foundation is the best setting for me to realize what we set out to create back in 2014 and 2015. I have always done my best work in a less rigid environment. I am looking forward to continuing the work on both hardware and software development of IOTA independently.”
What Makes IOTA Unique?
As we alluded to a little earlier, it’s effectively a blockchain less blockchain is rather unusual.
Tangle’s more technical name is the Directed Acyclic Graph — and as Sønstebø explained in a blog post back in 2015, this technology aims to retain blockchain’s ability to execute securities transactions. The only difference is that it does away with the notion of blocks.
He also wrote: “IOTA should not be considered an alternative coin (altcoin) to existing cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, rather it is an extension of the growing blockchain ecosystem. It’s meant to work in synergy with these other platforms to form cohesion and symbiotic relationships. IOTA is designed to provide one solution that no other crypto does: efficient, secure, lightweight, real-time micro-transactions without fees.”
New transactions are validated by approving two previous transactions from another node — and this is a novel approach because it means that the network’s size and speed will be directly related to how many people are using the platform.
And whereas some cryptocurrencies are run as a business, the IOTA Foundation says it is firmly not for profit — adding that it has the sole goal of making the network as prosperous as possible.
Finally, IOTA has distinguished itself from many other crypto rivals by establishing high-profile partnerships with the carmaker Volkswagen and helping the city of Taipei to pursue smart projects.
How Many IOTA (MIOTA) Coins Are There In Circulation?
MIOTA has a maximum supply of 2,779,530,283 tokens — and all of them are in circulation.
When the crowd sale was held, this digital asset was billed as a utility token that could be used for payment across its network rather than a profit-sharing coin.
An incredibly precise 999,999,999 were sold during the 2015 crowdsale and this generated revenue of 1,337 BTC for the foundation. Given that Bitcoin was only worth about $325, this could have resulted in a substantial windfall for the team in later years.
It is worth noting that the supply of MIOTA did increase in later years, with the team arguing that a greater level of supply would make the token suitable for the “tiny nano transactions” that we’ll likely see through IoT devices.
The IOTA Foundation launched in October 2017, and at the time, it owned approximately 5% of the tokens in circulation. The community donated these. “the majority of these funds will build an army of developers and researchers.”
How Is the IOTA Network Secured?
Given how the IOTA network isn’t a blockchain, you may not think that it would have much need for a consensus mechanism. However, to help keep the network secure, a relatively straightforward Proof-of-Work puzzle is included in invalidating a transaction.
There have been security concerns surrounding IOTA. Researchers have claimed they have found vulnerabilities in the project’s code in the past.
Where Can You Buy IOTA (MIOTA)?
MIOTA is available on multiple exchanges — many people choose to buy MIOTA on Binance, Bitfinex, and OKEx. According to the project, many trading pairs are available, linking the token with Bitcoin, Ethereum, stablecoins, and fiat currencies, including the Japanese yen, euro, pound, and dollar.