Top releases to watch at the end of June 2018

Don't forget to mark these dates on your calendar: pay attention to Zcash, ICON, VeChain, OmiseGO, Stratis, Ziliqua, DASH, Ontology, WanChain.

Zcash (ZEC) Hard Fork 'Overwinter' is planned for June 26th

Overwinter is set to become the very first hard fork for Zcash. Its purpose is to fortify the existing protocol for future upgrades. Designed to activate at block 347,500 (150 seconds/block rate), it will require all users to update the existing software.

ICON (ICX) ICX / ETH DEX launch is scheduled for June 30, 2018

ICON (ICX) will move to ICX/ETH decentralized exchange.

VeChain (VEN) mainnet launch is planned for June 30th (not a definitive date)

With this MainNet launch, an integral point to focus on is the exchange of VEN units for VET tokens as these will become the native tokens of Thor network. VeChain holders will also generate THOR as part of staking rewards every day after this release.

Honte (OmiseGO (OMG) network preparation for Plasma) is scheduled for June 30, 2018

Honte in the game of Go represents a solid move, simple and robust. In Honte, OmiseGO will deliver the OmiseGO network and lay the foundations in preparation for Plasma (smart contracts).

Stratis (STRAT) Full Node Mainnet Beta is scheduled for June 30, 2018

The Full Node GUI is constantly improving, Beta release is built upon the feedback received from the Alpha release in December.

Ziliqua (ZIL) releases its testnet v2.0 on June 30, 2018

The network is currently working on the launch of its mainnet, although its testnet went live in April this year. The blockchain will be released in the Q3 of this year.

DASH (DASH) Evolution V1 mainnet will be launched on June 30, 2018

The goal of this development is focused on the following: Public DashPay, DAPI, DashDrive, DashCore v13.0 release; Quorum-based DAPI implementation; Official user-friendly Wallet; Masternode blocks; Multi-key spork technology; State transitions; Encryption of object data and etc.

Ontology (ONT) mainnet is expected to be released on June 30, 2018

The Ontology distributed identity frameworks (ONT ID) along with the Verifiable Claim Protocol are still in development. Besides, the network is working on new partnerships including the connections to NEO blockchain.

WanChain (WAN) first public chain integration with Ethereum and multi-coin wallet is scheduled for 30 June 2018 (or earlier)

The Wanchain 2.0 release in June will be the first big milestone that connects the entire Ethereum ecosystem to WanChain. A multi-coin wallet will be deployed at that time too.

BTC

3,670 USD
-0.00%

ZEC

54.04 USD
-0.88%

DASH

72.19 USD
-0.81%

OMG

1.31 USD
-0.76%

ONT

0.6067 USD
-2.87%

ZIL

0.02228 USD
-1.46%

VET

0.004071 USD
-0.89%

STRAT

1.00 USD
-6.65%

ICX

0.2402 USD
-2.61%

WAN

0.3347 USD
-0.98%

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Bitcoin (BTC) Darknet Transactions Doubled In 2018: Why This Is Bullish

Crypto Darknet Transactions Boomed In 2018 Since Bitcoin (BTC) burst onto the global stage in 2009, the cryptocurrency, known for its decentralized, immutable, censorship-resistant, pseudonymous, and borderless nature, has become a medium for transactions of all shapes and size. And just like U.S. dollars and other government-issued currencies, BTC has found use cases in illicit transactions. Whether it be purchasing questionable goods or otherwise, the flagship cryptocurrency has found a place. Per a recent report by the way of Reuters, which cited data gathered by Chainalysis, a leading blockchain data analytics consortium, Bitcoin-related transactions on darknet markets, which offer fake IDs, over-the-counter drugs (recreational), among other articles of contraband, have risen dramatically since January 2018. This rally in darknet-related transactions comes as BTC fell from an all-time high of $20,000 to a yearly low of $3,150 in late-December. It isn’t clear how the analytics group, which is often employed by governmental agencies to weed out bad actors, discerned ‘normal’ transactions from those questionable, but Chainalysis revealed that $2 million per day worth of BTC were routed through the darknet’s peer-to-peer marketplaces. Overall, $600 million was spent on darknet markets throughout 2018, compared to $700 million in 2017. While the decline in transaction value could be seen in a negative light, considering BTC fell by over 70% within the same time period, a 14.3% drop is relatively mere. Kim Grauer, a senior economist at Chainalysis, chalked the slight decline in darknet transactions to the closure of AlphaBay and Hansa, two “major markets,” in mid-2017, which purportedly stunted flows into early-2018.  Grauer added: The reason for that drop is more law enforcement activity… It would be misleading to think that this year it (the volume) will go down. Why This Stat Is Bullish For Bitcoin So you may be gandering at the title and thinking, why is this non-innocuous statistics an optimistic sign for BTC and the broader cryptocurrency market/sector? Well, let me explain. Although I do not agree with (much of) what goes on via the darknet, the rise in ‘illicit’ transactions underscores a forward-thinking, bullish Bitcoin trend. More specifically, the monumental growth of Bitcoin’s underlying multi-faceted fundamentals throughout 2018. So make no mistake, while the collapse in price is harrowing, people are still using BTC in transactions, not just pure speculation. Per previous reports from Ethereum World News, data compiled by Jameson Lopp, the chief technology officer of Casa, accentuated that from a fundamental perspective, 2018 was Bitcoin’s best year yet. Hashrate doubled, while a cumulative $410 billion in value was transacted on the “world’s most secure transactional settlement layer.” Bitcoin’s scaling solutions also saw notable levels of adoption. SegWit, a short-term, ‘bandaid-esque’ solution that squeezes more transactions into blocks, saw use swell from 10% to 40% over 2018. The Lightning Network, a long-term scaling solution that takes advantage of off-chain ledgers to facilitate effectively free, low cost, scalable, immutable, and private transactions, swelled to 500+ BTC capacity. And while 2019-specific statistics are scant and hard to come by, preliminary data indicates that the following 12 months will continue to see the flagship cryptocurrency & blockchain network continue to gain traction. This isn’t baseless speculation. Per our previous reports, Coinstar, a North American kiosk provider with tens of thousands of offerings across the U.S. & Canada, recently joined hands with Coinme, a Bitcoin ATM upstart, to implement their services into Coinstar’s terminals. Now, over 20,000 kiosks can buy BTC with their spare change. Title Image Courtesy of Noah Silliman Via Unsplash The post Bitcoin (BTC) Darknet Transactions Doubled In 2018: Why This Is Bullish appeared first on Ethereum World News.
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Former Governor of French Central Bank Joins Board of Directors of Blockchain Firm Setl

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Gov’t Shutdown Freezes SEC Activity, But Bitcoin ETF Date Unaffected

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has frozen all pending administrative proceedings due to the government shutdown. According to a legal expert, however, the Commission is not allowed, by law, to delay the decision on VanEck/SolidX Bitcoin ETF past its current deadline.  No More Delays Despite Government Shutdown The SEC has issued an order on January 16th, putting all pending administrative proceedings on hold because it has “experienced a lapse in appropriations.” According to the documents, all proceedings which have to face a hearing before the Commission or an administrative law judge, are currently frozen. Jake Chervinsky Legal expert Jake Chervinsky said that even though the SEC has been shut down before that order, administrative proceedings were still in motion, hence deadlines were unaffected. Now that the SEC has stayed all administrative proceedings, interested parties may file a motion to dismiss the stay if their proceedings are an exception of the activities stated in the order. Bitcoinist reported that the SEC needs to come up with a decision on the approval of the CBOE-backed VanEck/SolidX Bitcoin ETF by February 27, 2019. Irrespective of the newest order, the SEC isn’t allowed to further delay its decision, the legal expert holds: This does not change anything about the ETF deadline, which is imposed by the statute and cannot be delayed further. This does not change anything about the ETF deadline, which is imposed by statute and cannot be delayed further. I stand by the following:https://t.co/1EpAv1B0Nm — Jake Chervinsky (@jchervinsky) January 17, 2019 The commission has already delayed its decision multiple times, with the last one happening in December. SEC’s shutdown saw mounting rumors that the Bitcoin ETF might get automatically approved if the commission misses the deadline. While this is true in theory, Chervinsky recently dismissed the possibility, saying that “in reality, it would never happen.” It’s true that a proposed rule change is auto-approved if the SEC doesn’t make a decision by the deadline, but in reality it would never happen. The SEC has enough staff to put out a decision, even if it’s a one-pager saying ‘denied for reasons to be explained later. Chervinsky, who’s also a frequent commentator on cryptocurrency-related matters, has previously said that the chances of a Bitcoin ETF approval are down to 10%. What do you think about the chances of a Bitcoin ETF approval? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below! Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Twitter@jchervinsky   The post Gov’t Shutdown Freezes SEC Activity, But Bitcoin ETF Date Unaffected appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.
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