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Long-Awaited Hedera Hashgraph Launches, Amidst Centralization Concerns

Highly anticipated DLT network Hedera Hashgraph has officially entered the ‘Open Access’ (OA) phase of its mainnet beta, and 26 decentralized applications have gone live on it. The mainnet will remain in beta stage until it reaches version 1.0, which Hedera expects to occur in 2020.

Hedera Hashgraph is a general purpose distributed ledger technology (DLT), which by all accounts could be considered as a direct competitor to the likes of both Bitcoin and Ethereum. This is due to the low costs and high power (10,000+ DPS) it offers -> benefitting products and services such as its utility token powered token, ‘HBAR’; as well as its development infrastructure, upon which dapps can currently be built.

It must also be noted that a hashgraph, whilst still a DLT, is fundamentally different from a blockchain which is what makes the first public launch as significant and anticipated as it is. Instead, it uses a mechanism called ‘directed acrylic graphs’ (DAG) which offers unique benefits such as future proofing for scalability.

The dapps available upon open-beta launch are as follows…

  • AdProv.io, AdsDAx, Certara, All Over Chain, Armada Chain, Binsignia, Carbon, Chainlink, Coinsquad, earthtile, EVEC, Hash-hash.info, Hashing Systems, hbarprice.com, HEX, HManager, The Intellectual Property Vault, Lonestar Data Technologies, MyEarth.Id, MyHbarWallet, Otrafy, PlayHash, Power Transition, Rejolut, tune.fm, and Zabo.

AdProv.io for example is a service provider which seeks to eliminate fraud within the digital advertising sector, and believes Hedera to be the “only solution fit for fast transactions in the ad tech ecosystem auction environments” because of its “true immutability, complete transparency of transaction and decision history.

Certara calls itself a “global, model-informed drug development and decision support leader” and provides insights on transactions across the Hedera network through operation of a mirror node.

Leemon Baird, Co-Founder and Chief Scientist at Hashgraph. Also the CEO and Founder at Swirlds.

Although Hashgraph is most often associated with Hedera, it is actually the intellectual property of Swirlds which owns all related patents and licenses the technology to Hedera for the purpose of running a general-purpose public ledger. Swirlds meanwhile retains the right to use or license hashgraph technology for other purposes.

This contrasts greatly with its rivals Bitcoin and Ethereum, neither of which have private ‘for-profit’ entities as direct core beneficiaries of their technologies. Also unlike Bitcoin and Ethereum, the full source code for Hedera has not yet been released to the public making it closed-source at present and until at least early 2020.

Additionally, the token is governed by a closed council of private blue-chip organisations – who act as gatekeepers to the network and all of its decision-making. As of publication, Hedera has only released 3% of all its tokens.

Looking forward: Hedera claims that it is in the process of having its technology and hbar token integrated into Ledger hardware wallets. Starting with the Ledger Nano S. The company additionally plans on increasing membership of its corporate governing council (comprised of node operators and decision makers): from 10 to 39 members.

Quotes

“Today we are thrilled that, through open access, dozens of decentralized applications are now live and running on the mainnet, along with mirror nodes and other parts of the ecosystem designed to expand Hedera’s reach and adoption.

“We thank these teams for being early supporters of Hedera, and are excited to see how each is making their own vision of a fairer, more secure and more distributed internet a reality.”

“Open Access is a big milestone for us. As of that moment, anyone from the general public can create a Hedera account, and any developer can now build and deploy decentralized applications (dapps) on the Hedera Hashgraph platform.”

Mance Harmon (co-founder and CEO, Hedera Hashgraph)

“Today, we welcome developers globally to build decentralized applications on our platform, and are excited to see what they will build… With Open Access, our council members have also begun running nodes, marking the next step in our journey to become the industry’s most decentralized public network.”

Dr. Leemon Baird (Co-Founder and Chief Scientist, Hedera Hashgraph)