Over the last few months, we have witnessed a major slowdown in the cryptocurrency market. Furthermore, the regulatory uncertainty surrounding the crypto market continues to prevail with no clear path ahead. However, this has not stopped some of the major industry players from moving ahead with bright hope.
Here is a look at some of the top five events that will bring a potential disruption in the crypto sector.
1. BitTorrent Token (BTT) Airdrop to Start From January 28
Earlier this month, peer-to-peer file sharing platform BitTorrent announced the launch of its BitTorrent (BTT) token on the Tron blockchain network. As part of its future expansion, Tron had acquired BitTorrent last year for $140 million. The BTT Token will run on the Tron protocol with TRC-10 compatibility.
The progress made by the Tron’s blockchain network over the last year has instilled huge confidence among industry players. A number of cryptocurrency exchange like Binance, Huobi and OKEx have pledged their support to list the BTT token. Binance has announced that it will start the BTT token sale from January 28 through its Binance Launchpad platform. The platform said:
“Binance Launchpad will commence the BitTorrent (BTT) token sale at 2019/01/28 3:00 PM (UTC). There will be two simultaneous token sale sessions, accepting BNB and TRX, respectively.”
After commencing on January 28, the token sale will continue till the 3rd of February. On the other hand, the BitTorrent Foundation has announced that it will start airdropping the BTT tokens to TRX holders form the 11th of February, next month, and this will continue till 2025.
— Justin Sun (@justinsuntron) January 20, 2019
Read more on Tron’s plans for the BitTorrent platform in our exclusive interview with Tron founder Justin Sun.
2. The Launch of the Bakkt Platform
The entry of major financial institutions in the crypto sector could trigger further adoption. NYSE parent company Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) announced the launch of the Bakkt platform last year around August 2018. The Bakkt platform has support from major global institutions from the technology, financial and the retail space. Some of the big names supporting Bakkt include Microsoft, BCG, and Starbucks.
The launch of the Bakkt platform is likely to take place next month in February 2019. With the launch of the Bakkt platform, we could simultaneously see the launch of Bakkt Bitcoin Futures that could usher the crypto market with institutional capital. Due to ongoing regulatory uncertainty has caused several delays in the launch of Bakkt. Furthermore, the U.S. government shutdown is acting as a major spanner-in-the-wheel.
However, Bakkt’s core team continues to move ahead with the core developments. At the beginning of 2019, Bakkt raised $182 million from 12 high-profile investors as part of its future expansion. On Tuesday, January 22, Bakkt also announced new recruitments in the company.
3. The Upcoming Constantinople Hard Fork In the Ethereum Network
The entire crypto community is waiting for the upcoming Constantinople hard fork in the Ethereum network. The hard fork is expected to bring a series of improvement to the Ethereum network majorly in terms of scalability and the speed of operation.
Although Ethereum’s core development team is actively working on the hardfork, the launch of Constantinople is seeing continuous delays due to one or the other reason. Constantinople was earlier scheduled to take place in November 2018, however, got delayed due to multiple reasons.
Much recently, smart contract auditing firm ChainSecurity discovered a critical security vulnerability in the EIP 1283 protocol. The vulnerability could facilitate a potential reentrancy attack allowing attackers to steal funds. This has pushed the launch of Constantinople to February end. However, the core developers team has arrived at a common consensus and a planned “two-fork” strategy for the safe launch of Constantinople.
4. The Launch of Telegram Open Network and Gram Token in March 2019
At the beginning of 2018, the first report of popular messenger Telegram launching its blockchain network emerged. Called as the Telegram Open Network (TON), the Telegram blockchain will purportedly have many superior features over Etheruem’s blockchain network. The TON Network will supposedly process millions of transactions per second.
Earlier, Telegram announced to launch its own ICO form “Gram” tokens open for the public. However, by March 2018, the company managed to raise a whopping $1.7 billion in the per-ICO sale. Later by May 2018, the company canceled its plans of the public launch of the ICO citing sufficient fund availability.
Finally, at the ongoing World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, the team behind the TON project has confirmed the launch of TON network and Gram Tokens in March 2019. According to the latest CoinSpeaker report, TON has completed 90% of its development work.
Telegram intends to save at least 52% of Gram in order to secure the currency from speculations and provide flexibility. 44% will be realized, and 4% will be kept for Telegram employees.
5. The Approval of the Bitcoin ETF By the SEC
The approval of Bitcoin ETF has been one of the most talked-after events in the crypto community. The arrival of institutional products like the Bitcoin Exchange-Traded-Fund (ETF) can see a major capital inflow in the ailing cryptocurrency market.
However, it seems that the arrival of Bitcoin ETF shall be a distant dream. The SEC has been quite firm on its decision to not approve the ETF product saying that the crypto market is not ready for it. Citing multiple hacking events over the last year, the SEC chairman Jay Clayton said that crypto exchanges lack sophisticated tools to deal with illicit activities of market manipulation.
A further downturn in the event is the ongoing U.S. government shutdown that is delaying the plans further in the approval of the VanEck Bitocin ETF. If this was not enough the CBOE has finally decided to pull its VanEck Bitcoin ETF proposal. Talking to the CNBC, VanEck’s founder and CEO, Jan Van Eck, said:
“We were trying to do that but we obviously can’t have meetings when they’re shut down,” VanEck told CNBC’s “ETF Edge. ” “Instead of trying to slip through or something, we just had the application pulled.”
This comes as a big shocker to the Bitcoin community who had pinned their hopes on the VanEck ETF proposal.