Telegram's TON Is Getting Ready To Take Over, Monfex's Analyst Explains
In 2018, Telegram announced it would be conducting an ICO with a view to launching its own blockchain-based ecosystem. Telegram's ICO swiftly became one of the top ICOs of all time, raising $1.7 billion from only 200 investors. Only the EOS ICO managed to raise more funds.
The runaway success of the ICO's private sale led to the premature closure of the public sale, leaving many would-be investors to sit it out. So, what’s the deal with Telegram and its blockchain plans? Most importantly, how soon can investors get their hands on the much sought-after GRAM token?
Telegram vs. The Competition
Telegram is already one of the most popular messenger apps in the world, competing with the likes of WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger despite its newcomer status. Launched in 2013, Telegram already boasts over 200 million monthly users.
Telegram has a host of features which distinguish it from the competition. Facebook Messenger means submitting to the insane lack of privacy and targeted advertising for which Mark Zuckerberg’s firm has become infamous. WhatsApp uses encryption to protect the privacy of message content but requires users to exchange phone numbers.
On the other hand, Telegram lets users interact by exchanging usernames. It encrypts messages and allows for “secret chats” which aren’t stored in the cloud and can be set to self-destruct. Users can send and receive large files up to 1.5GB and decide who gets to see when they were last online on the app. Unlike most other messaging apps, users of Telegram can also edit messages.
Analyst predictions for the GRAM token are looking good. Alexander Sovpel, analyst for the Monfex trading platform, predicts that the launch could generate up to $4 billion in revenue for Telegram by 2022. If this seems ambitious, then consider that Telegram has around 350,000 new users each day. The Monfex analysis extrapolates this to 1 billion users by 2022.
Each user will generate $5 in revenue, based on an estimate comparing to $5.60 from each user of Chinese payment app WeChat, and $6 for users of Google Pay. With numbers like these, even $4 billion could end up being a conservative prediction.
And this wouldn't be the first meaningful prediction that the Monfex team has made recently. In addition to the trading platform's easy-to-use interface and highly competitive spreads and commissions, Monfex provides incremental value to its clients through its technical analysis research and forecasts. Speaking to this value-add, Max Tsaryk, CEO of Monfex, recalls: “The launch of the Telegram token, Gram, is going to be one of the biggest events in crypto history. Considering that it comes packaged with an actual use case, and mass adoption starting from day one, it has the potential to completely revolutionize the crypto market.”
The standout feature which earned Telegram its place as the most popular messaging app for the crypto community is groups. A Telegram group can grow up to 100,000 members. The group functionality provides an opportunity for dialogue between a blockchain project and its community, without all the background noise of a platform like Twitter.
Therefore, when Telegram announced its intention to develop a blockchain ecosystem, the crypto community started to buzz with anticipation.
Telegram Open Network (TON)
The Telegram Open Network (TON) is Telegram's planned blockchain-based platform, aimed at bringing crypto services to users of its app, with full integration into Telegram's existing architecture. By integrating into existing messenger infrastructure, it can tap into its vast pool of users to create a mass-market crypto platform. Consider this – no other main net launch in history has had access to 200 million active monthly users right off the bat.
The plan for TON goes far beyond Telegram’s current scope as a free and ad-free messaging tool. The white paper highlights the slow processing speeds of the Bitcoin and Ethereum networks, and how cryptocurrencies have so far failed to reach the mass market. TON aims to address these gaps, by creating a “decentralized supercomputer and value transfer system” to rival Visa and Mastercard. The TON wallet will be integrated into the existing Telegram messaging app.
The network will achieve scalability through sharding, partitioning of the blockchain database to achieve faster transaction speeds. Once the mainnet is live, additional functionality including file storage and a proxy layer to preserve privacy will be added. Users will be able to send and receive payments using their Telegram wallets, and TON will also allow developers to build and launch decentralized apps on the network.
It’s an ambitious plan, and one that will be alluring for existing Telegram users who won’t have to set up yet another wallet or online account.
What’s the Current Outlook?
Around January 2019, speculation started to build that a launch was becoming imminent. CoinTelegraph reported that Pavel Durov, the founder and CEO of Telegram, had tentatively mentioned March 2019 for launch, although he was apparently reluctant to commit to a concrete date.
In February, an investor update confirmed that TON was 90% of the way through its development schedule and had slated March for a potential test net launch. The investor letter confirmed that TVM (Telegram Virtual Machine) had been “fully implemented and tested by the team internally, only minor changes necessary.”
Many smaller investors have been left waiting to find out when they could buy into the GRAM token. Of course, it’s unlikely that GRAM will go into active trading until the full mainnet launches, which will now inevitably be later in the year. However, the post which details the update states that the team is actively working on getting the GRAM token listed on Asian exchanges including Binance, Huobi, and OKEx. The post also alluded to possible partnerships with e-commerce, retail, and other online services.
It’s easy to see why there are so many investors eagerly awaiting the launch of the TON mainnet so they can be among the first to get their hands on the GRAM token. Telegram could indeed end up being the company that created the tipping point for the mass, mainstream adoption of cryptocurrency.
Image sourced from Pixabay
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