Waves Overview

Waves is a unique digital asset. The Waves token is the native unit of Waves Platform AG. The platform is an open-source blockchain which permits users to create and manage their own custom cryptocurrencies. The Waves token is used to pay for transaction fees associated with peer-to-peer transfers conducted on the network. The Waves core software provides the ability to create coins, and the platform has its own wallet as well.

The History of Waves

Waves was developed by Sasha Ivanov and released on June 7, 2016. The platform is written in the Scala programming language. It is open-source, meaning that the source code is available to developers. The most recent stable release of the platform occurred on January 12, 2018. The full node is available on the Linux, Microsoft, and MacOS operating systems. A wallet is available online and there is also a wallet app for Chrome.

There were multiple reasons for the creation of the Waves Platform. It was specifically designed to address issues that prevent more entities from adopting blockchain technology. Particular problems the platform proposed to resolve included speed, scalability, and user experience. Thus far, the platform seems to be making progress with its goal. The main hurdle is that many people and organizations have yet to fully accept cryptocurrency or integrate it into their lives and businesses. This is changing, however, and with the change will come greater opportunities for the Waves platform.

Like many new altcoins, the funding for the launch and development of Waves was accomplished with a crowdsale. The result of the crowdsale was partcularly impressive. About $16 million was raised. The project collected around 30,000 Bitcoins during the sale. The number of Waves tokens is fixed at 100 million.

The Waves Platform has Bitcoin gateway which allows users to hold and transfer Bitcoin. This feature was added to the platform in March 2017. Later in 2017 the developers added gateways for the U.S. Dollar and Euro. Gateways for Ethereum, Litecoin, and Zcash have also been incorporated into the Waves platform.  

Like Ether to Ethereum, Waves is the fuel or gas for the Waves Platform. To transfer Waves or other tokens on the platform there is a fee of 0.001 Waves. The cost for an individual to create their own cryptocurrency token is 1 Wave.

A unique feature of this digital asset it that it offers owners of the token the opportunity to lease their balance to mining nodes. As we will discuss, Waves mining functions more like earning interest than mining does for other cryptocurrencies. Miners basically receive fees that are incurred from transactions on the network. The balance of Waves tokens held determines if a miner is classified as a full node and therefore capable of receiving higher rewards.

Launching new tokens with the Waves Platform is straighforward and simple. It only requires the completion of a short form. Each token created on the platform has a unique ID number. Supply of the tokens can be customized and it is also possible to add more tokens in the future as a cryptocurrency grows. Token creators must also supply a description of their token which cannot be changed in the future. This part of the platform is a major selling point, but the process is somewhat less developed than other uses of Waves like holding and transferring other cryptocurrencies.

Waves Mining

Waves tokens are not mined in the classic sense which requires miners to participate in a Proof-of-Work system. In mining Bitcoin, for example, miners use hardware to solve complex encrypted hashes or problems. This work serves to help keep the network secure and verify transactions. With Waves, the mining process is classified as a Proof-of-Stake system.

Waves miners do not need dedicated computer resources in the same way they are required by Bitcoin mining. All that is required is a hosted server. Miners don’t receive rewards for verifying a block like they do in Bitcoin. Instead, they are rewarded with a portion of the fees earned from transactions on the network. The downside is that a minimum Waves balance of 1,000 is required to have a full node on the network and add blocks of transactions. This would preclude many individuals from participating in the mining process.

Mining cryptocurrency was once one of the preferred ways to obtain a token. Today, the process is simply beyond the scope of most individuals. For coins like Bitcoin the process requires expensive mining rigs and also consumes vast amounts of resources. This creates a complicated risk vs. reward scenario. Those who wish to participate in the mining process might be better off choosing a mining pool like those offered by Genesis mining.

At Genesis mining, individuals share the costs of mining cryptocurrencies by purchasing contracts. These contracts give them hash power. When coins are mined, the participants share in the coins that are generated. Genesis Mining maintains all of the equipment itself in secure locations around the world. There are no costs beyond purchasing a monthly contract.

Waves Use and Acceptance

Waves is still in its infancy compared to other cryptocurrencies. Therefore, its mainstream acceptance is still growing. However, there have been some significant developments in the field of partnerships since the coin was launched.

One partnership is with Deloitte. This partnership serves the purpose of regulating the way blockchain crowdfunding is accomplished. The companies also work together to refine and develop a blockchain framework that is adaptable to businesses.

The National Settlement Depository has partnered with Waves to create a blockchain platform. The NSD is the central repository for the Moscow Stock Exchange. Presumably, the development of this specific platform is to facilitate trading of digital assets.

As time passes the Waves Platform seems to have much to offer the field of cryptocurrency. Its token has already achieved a par with the U.S. Dollar in its value and has the potential to grow even further. This is a platform that bears watching by the experienced cryptocurrency investor.