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Aptos (APT) Launch & Market Update




Aptos, developed by Aptos Labs, has been dubbed the “Solana Killer” by many in the crypto community. Aptos is a high-throughput Layer-1 blockchain network built by former Meta developers Mo Shaikh and Avery Ching. Aptos aims to become one of the fastest blockchains; the developers of the project claim to have achieved a transaction throughput of 10,000 Transactions Per Second (TPS) on the Aptos testnet, and they currently aim for 100,000 TPS on the mainnet.

A Blockchain Backed by Deep Pockets

In July, Aptos announced a $150 million funding round led by FTX Ventures and Jump Crypto which made it a whopping $350 million of secured total funding at the time. Earlier in the year, Aptos Labs raised $200 million in strategic funding led by Andreessen Horowitz (a16z). Well-known Venture Capital (VC) firms including Tiger Global, 3 Arrows Capital, Coinbase Ventures, Katie Haun, and Multicoin Capital participated in the funding rounds. Despite the bear market Venture Capitalists have shown a continued interest in investing in Web3 startups.

Binance Labs, Binance's venture capital arm, announced a strategic investment in Aptos. Last month, Binance released another announcement that it had made a follow-on investment to boost the strategic investment it had earlier made in Aptos.

Chaotic Launch and Vague Tokenomics

Launching a quality blockchain network is no easy feat; mainnet launches are usually preceded by months – sometimes years – of development, testing, and planning. The Aptos launch was much hyped and anticipated particularly because it had huge VC backing. Shortly after the mainnet launch, Aptos received a lot of criticism. Some quarters of the crypto community cited Aptos’ inability to hit its advertised TPS. At one point, Aptos was operating at a meagre 4 TPS. However, as a new blockchain Aptos still has room to grow, onboard more validators, and work towards its TPS goals.

Before launch, little to nothing was known about APT tokenomics. Despite this, APT was listed on every major Centralized Exchange (CEX) shortly after its mainnet launch; a clear indication of VC-backed privileges. Aptos’ late-release summary-version tokenomics still has some perceived flaws. Aptos has been criticized for allocating an ‘unreasonably’ high percentage of APT tokens to its core developers and private investors.

Anticipated Total Circulating Token Supply for the next 10 years subject to network performance and staking assumptions.

The document reveals that there is an initial total supply of 1 billion APT. About 510 million APT will go to community members, 190 million APT will go to the core developers of the project, and the remainder goes to the Aptos Foundation and private investors. According to the distribution schedule in the tokenomics document, 125 million APT is made available initially to support ecosystem projects, grants, and community growth initiatives. An initial amount of 5 million APT will be designated to the Aptos Foundation, and an unlock schedule of 1/120 of the remaining tokens allocated to the community and Aptos Foundation will be unlocked monthly for the next ten years.

The core developers and private investors are subject to a four-year lock-up schedule with no APT available for the first twelve months. 3/48ths of tokens reserved for core developers and private investors will be unlocked on the 13th month after the mainnet launch. 3/48ths of the tokens will continue to be unlocked until the 19th month after the mainnet launch when the unlock fraction will become 1/48th. This amount of APT will be unlocked each month until all APT tokens reserved for devs and private investors are unlocked. The team estimates the last unlock to be around four years after the mainnet launch.

At launch, 20 million APT were distributed in an airdrop to Aptos testnet participants. Testnet participants who minted the APTOS:ZERO testnet NFT received up to 150 APT tokens, estimated to be worth $1900 at its October 19 all-time high, according to data from CoinGecko. The Aptos airdrop has sparked a renewed interest in airdrops in the crypto community.

It is worth noting that APT is an inflationary token; more tokens will be minted over time as rewards for staking, and the total supply is expected to increase. Aptos is yet to release a deflationary strategy, such as the periodic burning of tokens or scheduled buybacks.

Aptos Tech and The Move Language

The Aptos blockchain comprises a set of validator nodes that jointly receive and process transactions using a byzantine fault-tolerant (BFT), proof-of-stake consensus mechanism. Aptos uses a parallel execution engine Block-STM for parallel processing. Most blockchains process transactions sequentially; this has been a major drawback to blockchain scalability. Parallel processing allows blockchains to achieve very high TPS as all transactions are processed simultaneously (in parallel) and validated afterwards. When a transaction fails, it is aborted and re-executed by the parallel execution engine; this way conflicts and deadlocks are avoided on the blockchain.

Move is a rust-based programming language tailored for blockchain-based application development. The Move programming language was initially developed for the Diem blockchain, Meta’s (formerly Facebook) abandoned blockchain project. A majority of the Aptos developers, including the founders, previously worked on Meta’s Diem. Move was built to improve upon some shortcomings of existing smart contract programming languages like Solidity. For example, in Solidity, assets are encoded in hash maps; in Move, assets are arbitrary user-defined types. This gives the smart contract developer more flexibility.

Move was also built to be a simplistic and secure blockchain-based programming language. Aptos adopted Move to encourage blockchain developers to build and launch dApps on its network. Move’s focus on security could also stem the tide of the recurring hacks going on in the crypto space.

There are already a handful of dApps built and deployed on Aptos. Before its mainnet launch, Aptos counted over 130 projects in the ecosystem. Decentralized exchanges (DEX), NFT marketplaces, DeFi protocols, lending protocols, blockchain oracles, and wallets have all been built on Aptos. Aptos has also launched its Web3 name service called Aptos Names, similar to Ethereum Name Service (ENS), which will give users “.apt” domain name extensions.

APT Price Action

On its first trading day, APT traded for as high as $13.73 before plummeting by as much as 40% hitting a low of $6.75. The timing of the price drop suggests that airdrop participants dumped their newly-earned tokens on the market amidst sentiments sparked by APT vague tokenomics. APT's current all-time high price on CoinGecko is $13.73, while on CoinMarketCap its all-time high price is $8.55. The cause of the disparity between the stated prices is that CoinMarketCap started tracking APT data after the token price had dropped.

The APT token has rebounded swiftly gaining 36% in a breakout rally to trade at $9.2. The Price of APT has, however, sunk by 10% in the past twenty-four hours; APT is currently trading at $8.2. APT is currently a top-100 token on CoinMarketCap.

Mandela has been a cryptocurrency enthusiast since 2017. He loves coding and writing about emerging technologies. He has an in-depth understanding of distributed ledger technology and the Web3 technology stack. He enjoys researching new cryptocurrency projects.