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Decentralization has been booming with activity and slowly becoming people’s center of attention. With so many blockchain networks, exchanges and platforms, it has almost become a horse race. But before placing our bets on the best horse, we should know all about it. And that’s exactly what we’re here for!
In 2021 February, Matic Network rebranded as Polygon, and ever since it has been on the radar of crypto frenzies. Billionaire investor, Mark Cuban, referred to Bitcoin as a store of value and Ethereum as a legacy, saying that these networks are not going away. But to that, he added, “Then there’s everybody else, and right now, Polygon is destroying those everybody else.”
What’s so special about Polygon, you ask?
Keep reading to learn more about Polygon, what it wishes to achieve, why it matters for Ethereum, and how it differs from other blockchain interoperability projects.
Introduction to Polygon
Polygon is a blockchain scalability platform called ‘the Ethereum’s Internet of Blockchains‘. It aims to bring the adaptability and scalability of alt chains along with Ethereum’s security, liquidity, and interoperability.
Simply put, Polygon is a framework for building interconnected blockchain networks.
Looking forward, Polygon is planning to admit two new roll-ups to its platform. One will distribute loads of off-chain exchanges together into a solitary trade, while the other will run on top of the Ethereum network to speed up transactions.
Polygon soared to popularity in February when it rebranded itself and has witnessed its market cap increase more than tenfold since then. Between January and May, the number of applications built on Polygon rose eight times to almost 400. At the time of writing, it has a market cap of more than $6 Billion.
Who is Developing Polygon?
Currently, it is being built by a multidisciplinary team led by the four co-founders— Jaynti Kanani, Sandeep Nailwal, Anurag Arjun, and Mihailo Bjelic.
Kanani, Polygon’s CEO, is an experienced developer who relishes scaling mechanisms, whereas the rest of the team comprises the qualities that bring a wealth of experience building, managing, and growing tech firms.
Why is it important for Ethereum?
Ethereum is the legend, yes, but let’s be real, it has some issues that are going completely out of hand at this point. The biggest one is its scalability problem. Consequently, it has a high transaction rate and low throughput.
If you’ve used the Ethereum network during its highs in the past, then you must be aware that the transaction fees can range from somewhat tolerable, to almost unbearable. In April 2021, these fees ranged from an average of $9 to over $30 per transaction — and at times even exceeded these figures.
The reason behind these issues is that firstly, Ethereum can process only ~15 transactions per second at its peak which is a lot less if we look at the demand, which completely outstrips this transaction rate. Secondly, it works on Proof-of-Work i.e. before validating a transaction it must wait for it to reach a global consensus.
That’s that. But where does Polygon fit in all this?
Recommend for Polygon Smart Contract Security Audit
Why is Polygon Important for Ethereum?
Polygon is the answer to all Ethereum problems! How?
It addresses the major problems faced by Ethereum. Rather than being a simple scaling solution like other scalable blockchains, Polygon is designed to be an entire platform designed for launching interoperable blockchains.
On Polygon, developers can launch preset blockchain networks with customizable attributes, catering to their requirements. These can be further tailored with an expansive range of modules, allowing developers to create sovereign blockchains with more specific functionality.
Polygon supports two types of chains:
- stand-alone chains
- secured chains.
Initially, stand-alone chains are self-sovereign blockchains that are directly Ethereum compatible, whereas secured chains simply bootstrap their security by leveraging a network of professional validators.
This platform is configured in a way to assist a variety of different blockchain scaling mechanisms, including Matic Plasma, zk Rollups, Optimistic Rollups, and Validum Chains— all of these are designed to multiply the transaction throughput of associated blockchains without making any compromises on security or user experience.
What Makes Polygon Unique From All The Others?
Polygon is built around the idea of constructing a future where different blockchains don’t have to necessarily operate as closed-off and single-handed siloes. It facilitates the concept of broader interconnected networks that operate as a consolidation of different communities.
It is the only solution in the market that is solely supporting the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) while enabling connected chains to retain self-sovereign security. It is a Layer 2 solution, utilizing a network of proof-of-stake validators for asset security.
Several projects have already been launched on Polygon, that is making use of its scaling technology, including:
- Balancer – an automated portfolio manager and trading platform, joined Polygon with $10 million in Joint Token Incentive.
- EasyFi – a decentralized borrowing and lending platform with support for undercollateralized loans.
- Aavegotchi – a DeFi trading game based around non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
Chains in Polygon are not obligated to leverage its security service as a service layer. They can still exchange messages with one another, having full independence and flexibility. This allows developers to build foolproof interoperable decentralized applications that can leverage the unique features of multiple blockchains at scale.
Another important aspect of Polygon is that building on it is very similar to building on Ethereum; its rival Cosmos uses a WASM-based virtual machine. Hence, it has a direct reach to the biggest blockchain development community and can now build highly scalable applications. They can harness Ethereum’s benefits without having to give up anything.
Sounds like a win-win situation, doesn’t it?
The race to be the first interoperable solution is on and Polygon is surely doing a great job at it. Its proof-of-stake chain and Plasma scaling solution are live on the mainnet, but developers are still waiting to launch their own standalone or shared security chains on Polygon until these features are released.
Polygon has its rivals in a stir and rushes to go live with its offerings. Considering Polygon was only launched in February 2021, we’re still waiting for the roadmap explaining how the development will move ahead. However, the team looks ambitious and is busy forging partnerships with some of the renowned projects!
We’ll be covering a detailed analysis of Polygon’s features, architecture, and the top projects on the network in the second part of this blog. So, stay tuned!
ImmuneBytes is facilitating blockchain security Services by employing the use of cutting-edge techniques on smart contracts and decentralized applications security audits. We have a team of experienced security professionals who are adept at their niches and provide you with innovative solutions and consultation. So far we have worked on 165+ blockchain start-ups on different blockchain frameworks, with clients spread across the globe, and are continually unfolding ourselves to make this decentralized movement thrive.