Rapper and entrepreneur, Akon, shared the whitepaper for his upcoming ‘Akoin’ cryptocurrency project. The document describes Akoin as a cryptocurrency “designed for entrepreneurs in the rising economies of Africa and beyond,” adding that the project’s mission is to “unlock the potential of the world’s largest growing workforce” using blockchain technology.
The whitepaper describes Akoins as utility tokens that power “atomic swaps” between cryptocurrencies, fiat currencies, and mobile phone credits on the Akoin network. Speaking about his project, Akon emphasized that mobile credits are being used as a currency in Africa, stating:
“We have so many currencies in Africa – a lot of them are unstable, and most of them are untrusted. It got to the point where the day-to-day African people don’t even use the currencies anymore, they’re using their cell phone minutes and credits as a way of trading for basic goods like produce, fish, fruits and things on the market.”
“Ultimately, outside of the villages, you really can’t trade cell phone minutes for anything,” he continued. “So we want to utilize that same mindset to take advantage of that mechanism outside of Africa – so even when they leave the continent, they can be able to utilize all of their credits and really be able to purchase real things.”
The token is also used to pay for fees for listing applications, transaction fees, fees for advertising on the platform, and as a means of exchange across the network. Akoin will be launched on top of the Stellar (XLM) network. Tokens can be held in both Stellar and Akoin wallets. The whitepaper also notes that private transactions “processed on the Akoin ecosystem” incur a fee of 2.5%.
The platform seeks to host an ecosystem of decentralized applications (Dapps), with the Akoin Foundation pledging to support and invest in Dapps that build on top of the Akoin network. The platform has partnered with peer-to-peer payments and mobile credit exchange platform, BitMinutes, who are working toward launching an app on the network. The whitepaper identifies several industries that the Akoin team believes can flourish using decentralized applications to target the African market – including mobile credit trading, micro-lending, phone credit trading, solar energy trading, media sharing, and healthcare.
Only 10% of Akoin tokens will be distributed via an initial exchange offering (IEO). The whitepaper states that the IEO will be conducted in partnership with a “top tier cryptocurrency exchange” during the second quarter of 2020, as per the terms of “an agreement with the unnamed exchange partner. The IEO is slated to distribute 45 million Akoins at $0.15 each, giving the offering a hard cap of $6.75 million. IEO participants will need to contribute in the form of XLM.
The remaining 90% of Akoins supply will be distributed among advisors — who will receive 5%, the team and foundation — with 10% each, the Akoin Wallet Retail Exchange — with 15%, and the treasury — with 20%. The remaining 30% of supply which will be placed in Akoin’s escrow fund, from which 2% will be released each month for 48 months. The total supply is planned to be released over four years, however, the paper notes that this will be subject to change based on “Escrow tokens being placed back into Escrow if they are not needed in the month they are released.”
Akon also in the early stages of building “Akoincity” on 2,000 acres of land provided to the project by the president of Senegal. Akon predicts that the city’s construction will be complete in five to ten years. Once complete, the rapper plans to construct additional Akoincities in every major African country in a bid to unify the African economy.
3 Big Blockchain Firms Working Together On A DeFi Product That Pays Passive Income
In a special announcement made at the Unitize conference on July 6, Cosmos, Polkadot, and Terra revealed a new DeFi savings product called Anchor that aims to offer dependable interest rates on stablecoins deposits. The companies involved in the creation of Anchor plan to launch it across their respective blockchains at the end of Q3 this year and scale across to other PoS blockchains in the future. Do Kwon, founder and CEO of Terra, explained in a prepared statement:
“While DeFi staples such as Maker and Compound have been revolutionary in creating fully decentralized crypto money markets, the volatility of their interest rates makes them unsuitable to be used as a household savings product. DeFi mass adoption needs the creation of a fully decentralized savings account that offers dependable APR.”
Anchor’s smart contracts receive stablecoin deposits and use a portion of them to acquire staking positions on compatible Proof of Stake blockchains. Users will receive their passive income from these staking rewards. The initial governance for this platform will come from the Interchain Asset Association (IAA), a newly formed organization that sees Zaki Manian of Cosmos, Jack Platts of the Web3 Foundation, and Do Kwon of Terraform Labs collectively steering the ship.
Telegram Is Set To Shut Down The TON Testnet By August 2020
Although Telegram has terminated its blockchain project, Telegram Open Network (TON), in May 2020, the TON test net has been apparently running for almost one year. In a July 6 update, the official TON development group on Telegram announced that it would be discontinuing its support of the test network for TON. Remaining TON validators will be turned off by August 1. In the post, the TON official recommended network participants save all their relevant data and stop their testing processes. Despite the testnet being set to shut down less than a month from now, network participants will still be able to continue their experimentation after the testnet is terminated. In order to do that, users can install their own testnet validators, described in greater detail in three different how-to documents containing guidelines for the Full Node, the Validator, and Test Grams.
Telegram launched the TON testnet for explorer and node software on Sept. 6, 2019. In anticipation of its scheduled Oct. 31 launch last year, the company released an alpha version of an iOS wallet to work with its native token, the Gram. But Telegram’s TON plans were never fully realized, as the United States Securities and Exchange Commission suddenly deemed Telegram’s $1.7 billion ICO illegal in mid-October. After a long-running legal battle with U.S. regulators, Telegram agreed to shut down its TON project, as well as return $1.2 billion to investors in line with a court-approved final settlement. As officially announced by Telegram CEO Pavel Durov, the firm had already reimbursed more than $1.2 billion by June 25.
Binance Supports An Ontology Upgrade
Binance, one of the world’s biggest crypto exchanges, has announced on July 5 that it will support the upcoming Ontology 2.0 network upgrade. Ontology 2.0 will include the integration of a number of community-led upgrades to its MainNet. Binance says that it will end support of Neo Enhancement Protocol 5-based, or NEP5, ONT tokens deposits. Any future deposits of NEP5 ONT will not be credited to users’ Binance account, it indicates. Deposits and withdrawals of ONT will be stopped starting July 6 at 9 a.m. UTC. Users will be notified when the Ontology upgraded network becomes stable and deposits and withdrawals are reopened, says Binance.
The Ontology network upgrade will not result in a new token creation and ONG staking rewards for ONT will not be affected. Ontology uses a dual token (ONT and ONG) model. ONT is the coin and can be used for staking in consensus, whereas ONG is the utility token used for on-chain services. MainNet ONT started to release ONG as soon as Ontology MainNet went live two years ago. According to Ontology, from 9 to 12th June 2020, it will give its community the opportunity to have a say in the development of its governance and staking economic model, especially for the Triones node results. However, The Ontology Foundation’s first three-year bonus to the top 49 nodes and the distribution method remains unchanged.