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Table Of Contents
Helium (HNT) is a custom-built blockchain and cryptocurrency designed to support Internet of Things (IoT) devices. The platform enables users to secure rewards by providing connectivity or verifying data. The goal of the project was to build a peer-to-peer wireless network to simplify connecting anything to the internet by rewarding anyone to become a network operator. Currently, the platform includes thousands of ready-to-use devices, powerful integrations, and robust developer tools. As such, it’s one of the top-performing IoT-based networks in the market.
What Problems Does Helium (HNT) Solve?
There are multiple problems that Helium seeks to alleviate. Primarily, the network helps to reduce centralization. The protocol operates as a decentralized wireless infrastructure that empowers developers to create more responsive Dapps. The protocol's decentralized nature also improves its censorship-resistant characteristics.
Lack of Scalability
Another concern that Helium helps to reduce is scalability issues. Previous blockchains have shown how scalability concerns can become huge problems. Helium was built from the ground up to support high transaction throughput. Specifically, the network processes one block every 70 seconds. These blocks hold around 140 transactions per block.
Benefits of Helium (HNT)
There are a lot of benefits that Helium (HNT) users gain. The network supports low-powered wireless device communication. This strategy enables nearly any smart device to send data across Helium nodes securely.
The platform makes it simple for developers to integrate new hardware and software solutions. For example, the entire system is open-source. Users can review the source code of the project to get a firm understanding of every process. Open source projects are considered a better investment because the community is able to vet the code.
How Does Helium (HNT) Work
As part of Helium's unique approach to the market, the developers introduced a new concept called WHIP. WHIP is an open-source and standards-compliant wireless network protocol. Uniquely, it was designed to run on existing commodity radio chips available from dozens of manufacturers with no proprietary technologies or modulation required. These networks operate as DWNs (decentralized wireless networks).
Users can operate hotspots and earn rewards utilizing Helium. Hotspot users can earn when they submit valid proof of coverage challenges, participate in proof of coverage as a target, witnessing a proof of coverage challenge, or transfer device data over the network. Hotspot hosts can also earn rewards when they serve as consensus group members.
Helium Token (HNT)
The Helium token is the main crypto and utility token of the network. This cryptocurrency entered the market officially on July 29, 2019. The token plays multiple roles within the system. It enables IoT devices to communicate data securely. Also, hotspot hosts mine HNT while providing service. Notably, there is a max supply of 223,000,000 HNT. Additionally, the developers didn't conduct a pre-mine during the token's launch.
The Helium blockchain provides a decentralized ledger and smart contract capabilities to the platform. This specialty blockchain provides high throughput and security via the Helium Consensus Protocol.
Helium Consensus Protocol
Uniquely, the network takes the PoW concept and improves upon it considerably. Instead of miners conducting random mathematical equations, like with Bitcoin, miners conduct network necessary functions. In this way, miners perform work that is both useful and reusable to the network beyond simply securing the blockchain. These activities can include conducting the other consensus systems within the network. These systems include Proof-of-Coverage, Proof-of-Serialization, and Proof-of-location. Together, these systems enable Helium to provide decentralized connectivity to the masses.
The Helium Consensus Protocol is based on a variant of the HoneyBadgerBFT (HBBFT) protocol, which, in turn, is based on research from a team at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and Andrew Miller. It features a permissionless and Byzantine Fault Tolerant design.
Data Credits are similar to Ethereum's gas tokens. All transactions in the Helium blockchain are paid in Data Credits (DCs). Interestingly, Data Credits are produced by burning some amount of HNT using an on-chain transaction. Interestingly, the Helium Mobile Wallet automatically calculates the DC cost of your transaction and burns the precise amount of HNT to supply the required DCs for the transaction.
Users can mine HNT and secure rewards. Routers pay Miners for sending data to and from the internet with newly-minted tokens. Uniquely, mining is conducted using radio technology. This strategy provide more sustainability than CPU/GPU-based system. Notably, all miners participate in the creation of new blocks in the blockchain by being elected to an asynchronous Byzantine fault-tolerant consensus group.
The People’s Network
The Peoples Network operates as a long-range wireless system for very low-power and inexpensive IoT devices.
Users can become Validators nodes and earn rewards. These nodes perform consensus group work such as transaction validations. To become a Validator for Helium, you must stake 10,000 HNT. Additionally, you will need to operate validator node software and remain stable in terms of your network uptime. Nodes that fail to meet these requirements are removed from the network and penalized.
One of the best features of Helium is its asset tracking capabilities. Users can easily track their items leveraging a variety of technologies. The network supports IoT, GPS, and more. For example, the introduction of IoT enables Geolocations. These systems provide low-power solutions for the Internet of Things that surpasses simple GPS.
As part of the network's deflationary protocol, the system integrates off-chain sensors called oracles. The network uses decentralized price oracles to supply the USD to HNT price used for on-chain burn transactions. Currently, there are a group of nine Oracles handling these tasks. These oracles include Helium Inc, the Decentralized Wireless Alliance (DEWI), and seven anonymous community members.
Helium (HNT) users can vote on network developments by staking HNT. Community governance systems allow token holders to put forth proposals and vote on those provided by other members. They can also decide how to spend the community chest.
History of Helium (HNT)
Helium entered the market in July 1, 2013. The company is registered out of San Francisco, California. At that time, the company focused on streamlining IoT integration. Today, the company operates a powerful blockchain ecosystem that accomplishes this task.
How to Buy Helium (HNT)
Helium (HNT) is available on the following exchanges:
Uphold – This is one of the top exchanges for United States & UK residents that offers a wide range of cryptocurrencies. Germany & Netherlands are prohibited.
KuCoin – This exchange currently offers cryptocurrency trading of over 300 other popular tokens. It is often the first to offer buying opportunities for new tokens. USA Residents are Prohibited.
WazirX – This exchange is part of the Binance Group, which ensures a high standard of quality. It is the best exchange for residents of India.
Uphold Disclaimer: Assets available on Uphold are subject to region. All investments and trading are risky and may result in the loss of capital. Cryptoassets are largely unregulated and are therefore not subject to protection.
Helium (HNT) – Powerful Technologies Merge
The Helium (HNT) concept merges two of the most powerful technological advancements of today. The instant consensus capabilities and security of blockchain fit perfectly with the expandability and monitoring capabilities of IoT. As such, you can expect to see more firms attempt to bring these techs together. For now, Helium (HNT) remains a pioneering force in the market.
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