A lot of people have predicted that 2018 will be a massive year for both Qtum and Ethereum. There are a lot of exciting projects in the works for both groups and the market doesn’t seem to know what will come next from both parties.
Currently, Ethereum possesses the biggest developer and user base in the western world. However, Qtum has been gaining significant levels of traction in the East.
While they have many similarities, they are also very different in some ways. This article will look at what exactly Qtum and Ethereum offer and which network could come out on top.
What exactly is Qtum?
Qtum, pronounced ‘quantum’, is a company that is based in Singapore and focuses on providing blockchain technology that brings together the smart contracts of Ethereum with the stable blockchain that is seen with Bitcoin, utilizing proof of stake as part of the verification process.
The goal of Qtum is to take the interoperability and range of smart contracts apps to the next level, in particular when it comes to institutions and business operations. This means that they will be implementing templates, tools and different options for smart contracts, which will mean it will be even easier for companies to create and execute their own smart contracts.
This means that smart contracts will be safer and easier to use, and there will be enhanced operability with the likes of Bitcoin and Ethereum. The base code for Qtum is largely based on the Bitcoin blockchain but there have been numerous layers added on top of this by the developers at Qtum.
This is how they are able to utilize the smart contract Ethereum virtual machine to also operate alongside the Bitcoin blockchain. This means that even if there are further updates to the bitcoin blockchain or to the smart contracts from Ethereum, they will be instantly updated as part of Qtum.
The initial coin offering for Qtum took place in March 2017 and their mainnet first went live during September 2017. At the time, they were valued at $1.1 billion.
How are smart contracts made easier to use?
Anyone can use the Qtum network but it has been created mainly with the goal of catering towards the needs of businesses. They want to allow the transition of legacy systems in corporations over towards blockchain-based solutions which will allow companies to both lower costs and enhance the amount of automation in their business.
This may mean that a given company creates their own digital token in order to help power their offerings. It could be part of a company’s supply chain management which could be made more self-executing rather than relying mainly on human power.
There is still a long way to go when it comes to putting these goals into practice. The Qtum team has talked about how Ethereum still has a number of stability flaws that haven’t been addressed. They have also pointed towards the overreliance on account balances.
There are also challenges associated with the Bitcoin network. Despite being the most secure and stable blockchain currently around, it faces particular challenges.
There is currently no capability or smart contracts to be programmed in a direct manner on the Bitcoin network due to it not being Turing-complete.
Qtum wants to bridge the gap between Bitcoin and Ethereum and solve the problems that are seen when they are used in isolation. The security and stability of the Bitcoin blockchain is to be combined with the easy method of programming on the Ethereum network.
There will also be tools developed by Qtum which will allow pre-built smart contracts to be created that will allow for decentralized apps to be created a lot more quickly. These tools will also cater for other use cases for businesses that are based on blockchain technology.
Why has there been so much interest in Qtum?
Having managed to raise over $32 million through their token sale, it is clear that there is serious interest in this protocol. One of the reasons for this is the strong team behind the project, with one of the founders, Patrick Dai, having previously been a key member at the ecommerce giant Alibaba.
Other key members of the team have worked for prominent internet companies throughout Asia. These include the likes of Baidu and Tencent, which owns WeChat.
As Qtum are seen to be combining some of the best qualities from the likes of Bitcoin, Zcash and Ethereum, they are seen as a more put-together solution for some blockchain technology problems. The scalability and robustness of Bitcoin is combined with the anonymous nature of Zcash and the emerging technology of Ethereum.
Qtum have a strategy called “Go Mobile” which aims to create many more blockchain-based applications and get them in front of normal business people and consumers who spend considerable amounts of time using mobile apps.
Qtum caters for moving smart contract management to a mobile or a different computer in a short space of time. Transactions can even be verified without the need to run a full node. It would only take a few clicks on your mobile device in order to have a smart contract executed.
What exactly is Ethereum?
Ethereum is currently the second largest cryptocurrency in the world, behind Bitcoin in terms of market capitalization. It has allowed there to be a shift in the way digital currencies operate, as it means that new apps can be quickly and easily developed and deployed.
This is why the majority of new tokens are based on the Ethereum network. It is the ideal platform for decentralized apps to be created.
One of the main benefits of the Ethereum network is the capability to create and deploy smart contracts. These are specialized scripts that are created to automatically execute tasks once certain conditions have been met.
For example, suppose someone has to make a payment to John in October 2018 for $454 to write an article that is 1,000 words in length. Once this article has been submitted and all conditions have been met, the payment would then be released automatically to the writer. This is sort of similar to how an escrow account works, just with a whole lot more capabilities.
All the smart contracts are allowed as a result of the Ethereum Virtual Machine that operates thanks to a public network of nodes.
The native digital token for Ethereum is Ether, which has two main uses. It is used to compensate those complete nodes that are powering the network, which means that everything is able to remain running smoothly as time goes on.
It is also utilized to provide payment for those who have fulfilled the conditions of their given smart contract. Alongside Ethereum’s great capabilities when it comes to the creation of decentralized apps and the implementation of smart contracts, there are also some interesting plans in place for the future of the Ethereum Network.
While the future does look to be positive for Ethereum, there are some substantial roadblocks that need to be overcome first. Ethereum has seen a turbulent time of things since the start of 2018, with drastic drops in value having been seen.
Is Qtum going to overtake Ethereum?
One of the reasons why a lot of people believe that Qtum might overtake Ethereum in popularity is because of the growing influence of Qtum in Asia and in particular China.
One of the co-founders of Qtum has claimed that at the moment, Qtum is the most influential digital currency in the entire East. To support this claim, he referred to indicators including media coverage, trading volume and the projects that are currently being built utilizing Qtum.
While the government in China is not really in favor of their residents speculating on digital currencies, they do hold blockchain technology and the adoption of it in a positive light. There has been a stronger level of support shown towards Qtum after a number of important blockchain events were held in China recently.
Qtum are part of a number of key partnerships in the space. They have a partnership with one of the biggest internet security businesses in China, Qihoo 360, which has more than one billion users and revenues in the billions of dollars each year.
Qihoo 360 have a good reputation for their mobile app store, web browsers and the antivirus software they provide. They have partnered with Qtum and together created the first research center in the country specifically for blockchain technology.
The main aim of this new center is to make blockchain technology more commercialized so that Qihoo 360 can implement it as part of its product offering.
Qtum also has a partnership with Baofeng which owns one of the biggest online video players in China, the Storm Player.
It is clear that overall sentiment for Qtum in Asia is positive and with this being such a prominent region with not a lot of competition, Qtum could dominate the sector in Asia and overtake Ethereum in terms of popularity in the medium to long-term.