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Ethereum (ETH) News Roundup 4 – 18 July 2019 | Infura, Samsung

Right now everybody is waiting to hear more about ETH 2.0 and the anticipated ‘Istanbul’ fork, but it may take a while. With events such as the looming Libra token from Facebook however, Samsung releasing the Ethereum SDK – it is not just Ethereum that’s holding its cards close to the chest.

Welcome to our series of bi-weekly news digests for Ethereum (ETH).

Top News

July 8th

Gods Unchained: Public Beta Released for Coinbase-backed Card Game

Gods Unchained is a free-to-play collectible card game built on the ethereum blockchain – joining a list of projects hoping to capitalize on a trend that was kick started back in 2017 with the release of the immensely popular Crypto Kitties.

The game has been making headlines due to the public beta version of the game having recently been released. The company calls it a ‘balancing beta’, which essentially means that it is using the opportunity to test the results of card ‘battles’ in order to re-adjust and perfect the game play statistics of each respective card.

Perhaps just as (if not more) integral to the public’s interest in the game is the fact that the game frequently touts that it is ‘backed by Coinbase’. In May 2018, the parent company Fuel Games raised $2.4 million from Coinbase and other partners: Continue Capital, Nirvana Capital and Sora Ventures.

Back when Gods Unchained was originally announced in July 2018, a thread of messages were posted to the official twitter page which cleared up any confusion as to the role played by Coinbase in the creation of the game.Specifically, Coinbase invested in the parent company of Gods Unchained: Fuel Games.

Some highlights of these tweets, as well as information from the official website include…

  • Unlike current games which only give player license, this game gives players permanent immutable ownership over purchased game assets.
  • Cross-platform support for game assets, including inter-player card trading – adding value to the digital items.

Robbie Ferguson, co-founder of the game, compared aspects of the game to popular titles like Hearthstone and Magic: The Gathering. He also stated that:

“Gaming is a $140 billion per year market that has capitalized on leasing premium features to select individuals based on their purchasing power

“In almost every game, players are buying items, cards, skins and upgrades which they don’t truly own

“Blockchain actually gives players digital-asset ownership, with the same property rights you can find in the real world.”

Before he continued to compare aspects of the game to popular titles like Hearthstone and Magic: The Gathering.

Post-beta, the press release states that current existing ‘Genesis Sets’ will be discontinued as the game begins rolling out a new “season” of cards. The team will also use this opportunity to solidify card statistics, after balancing.

July 17th

Three New Premium Services Launched By Joseph Lubin (Ethereum) Backed ‘Infura’

Just recently, Infra announced that it would be adding three new paid services to its portfolio. It also made sure to note that the current free service on offer would not be diminished in any way, in light of this news.

The new services are called ‘developer’, ‘team’, and ‘growth’. The differences between the tiers are as pictured below.

Whilst all tiers of the Infura service provide access to Ethereum mainnet “and the Rinkeby, Ropsten, Kovan, and Goerli test-nets”, only the new + branded tiers offer “increased daily request volume and support features tailored for larger, production-ready applications.”.

Infra +, conversely,  touts itself as a premium Ethereum subscription service – with elevated features that reflect this.

To celebrate, the company states that it is offering a three month free trial for a limited time across all of its new ‘+’ products to new and existing users.

What makes Infra newsworthy is the fact that it is owned by ConsenSys, a prominent company within cryptocurrency and one that was founded by Joseph Lubin – a co-creator of Ethereum.

Infra is a service provider which offers a foundational infrastructure layer upon which decentralized apps (dapps) can be developed and API suite. Its clients include Coinbase Wallet, 0x protocol, Maker, IDEX, Opera, and CryptoKitties.

July 10th

Rumour: Samsung Releases Beta for Ethereum SDK

According to an article, published recently by The Block, Samsung has released the beta version of its Ethereum blockchain development kit. The news has been widely circulated by other publications, however it should be treated as a rumor for the meanwhile.

This is because the source linked to by all of these stories is the web page for the SDK. It reiterates how the full version will be available “later this year” and that interested developers can pre-apply now for access upon release, but there is no mention of a beta or pre-release.

Although Samsung has yet to make an official statement, the details on the webpage about the Ethereum SDK are worthy of note alone, such as the following specifications or ‘restrictions’:

  • Devices: Galaxy S10e, S10, S10+, S10 5G and the Galaxy Fold
  • Regions: Canada, South Korea and the United States of America
  • Blockchain Platform(s): Ethereum

In addition to the following cited benefits:

  • Help developers manage blockchain accounts easily and to make transactions easier, by abstracted transfer APIs for each type of coins.
  • A payment gateway for cryptocurrency remittance with its UI.
  • A set of functions that the Decentralized App (DApp) or Blockchain App “needs”.

Samsung has a history with blockchain, having incorporated support for blockchain and cryptocurrency specifically for its S10 model of phone. Furthermore, the company has developed its own blockchain platform called Nexledger which offers cross-compatible / interoperable support including for Ethereum and Hyperledger Fabric.

Price Movements

Information correct as of 00:08 AM, 27th July 2019 (via CoinMarketCap)