For the past three years, we have had altcoin projects that saw themselves as the “newer and better smart contract platform than Ethereum”. While many blockchain platforms have been trying to convince the crypto community that they are indeed the next Ethereum, there are only very few projects out there that have successfully gained the crypto community’s approval.
You can say NEO, Tron, Cardano, or Tezos being some of these very few projects. However, there’s one altcoin that has been dubbed as “Ethereum Killer” for quite some time. That altcoin is EOS. It did not get its nickname just for being around. EOS is actually a real deal and a serious project. And yes, just like NEO or Tron or Cardano, it tries to become the better smart contract platform than Ethereum.
So, what is EOS, exactly? And is it worth the nickname “Ethereum Killer”? Let’s find out together!
The Brief History of EOS
Just like almost all crypto projects that were started in 2016 and 2017, the EOS project began as an Initial Coin Offering (ICO). The difference was that EOS took a yearlong ICO until June 2018 to complete the token sale. The project was launched by a team called Block.one. Block.one has two main faces in the team, Brendon Blumer and Dan Larimer.
Brendon Blumer acts as Block.one Chief Executive Officer. Before his time with EOS, he was involved with various non-blockchain projects like in the real estate business and MMORPG. On the other hand, Block.one’s Chief Technology Officer is Dan Larimer, who became famous due to his involvement with Steem and BitShares (two popular altcoins that came before EOS).
The yearlong ICO successfully sold 1 billion of EOS tokens, and as a result, it raised more than $4 billion US dollars from the ICO participants. At the time, this ICO was seen as the biggest ICO in the history of crypto. Due to strong support from various supporters all over the world, EOS has one of the most active communities in the crypto space.
EOS’ Solution To Scalability
When EOS was first introduced to the crypto community for the first time, everybody already saw the biggest issue with Ethereum. That issue is about scalability. Ethereum was seen as “revolutionary,” but the infrastructure was not ready to be adopted by mainstream financial applications.
EOS introduced an idea of a much more scalable and efficient version of ETH. Yes, just like Ethereum, EOS’ main mission is to become the default smart contract platform. It addressed the biggest scalability concern of the blockchain space, which is about consensus mechanism. Different from the Proof of Work (PoW) algorithm, EOS believes the solution to the blockchain scalability problem is to use Delegated Proof of Stake (DPoS).
With DPoS, the EOS team believes the blockchain will become fast enough to support the mainstream applications on its network. For those who don’t know, DPoS or Delegated Proof of Stake only has 21 block producers in the entire ecosystem. These 21 block producers are voted in by EOS HODL-ers who choose to stake their tokens to vote.
This DPoS consensus algorithm is very efficient because it takes only 21 people or entities to confirm the same transaction in the blockchain. Compare it with Proof of Work where you need thousands of miners to confirm each transaction, which makes the whole network much slower.
EOS has successfully set the standard for newer blockchain platforms. Since 2018, the majority of newer blockchain networks also “adopted” a similar consensus algorithm. Some of these newer altcoins might combine a certain element of DPoS with BFT (Byzantine Fault Tolerance), but it doesn’t change the fact that many newer altcoins are still inspired by EOS’ DPoS mechanism.
Due to EOS’ consensus algorithm, the live mainnet can actually support up to 3996 transactions per second (TPS). While there are other blockchain platforms with even higher TPS, but undoubtedly 3996 TPS on mainnet is already good enough.
Well, we have talked about the basic fundamentals about EOS. However, the true important thing when it comes to the competition is adoption. Why? Because there’s no point in having a better tech if nobody is using it.
So, how about EOS’ adoption? Well, EOS is actually one of the busiest platforms for decentralized applications (dApps) at the present time. It’s one of the top three alongside Tron (TRX) and Ethereum (ETH), according to dappradar.com. Some of the most recognized EOS-based dApps are EOS Dynasty, NewDex, Crypto Swords & Magic, and Prospectors. Combined, the top three dApps have more than one million transactions in the past week alone.
Apart from the standard dApps, EOS is also trying to tap into the social media market. The creator of EOS, Block.one itself, is in the process of developing a new, decentralized social network called “Voice”. It is intended to compete with Facebook. EOS team admits it will be hard to compete with Facebook, but remember that Dan Larimer (CTO of EOS) has experience with SteemIt, another popular blockchain-based social network.
Last but not least, EOS token is also doing well if we want to see it from the perspective of crypto exchanges. Just like other popular altcoins in the top 10 rankings, you can find and trade EOS on Coinbase, Huobi, Bitfinex, Binance, and other famous crypto exchanges with a high level of liquidity.
So, Is EOS The Ethereum Killer?
Even though EOS is “winning” in terms of technology and adoption, but it still invites the debate on whether EOS can eventually replace Ethereum as the default platform for dApps. Yes, EOS is great, but it also has its own downsides.
One of the main arguments against EOS is its lack of “real” dApps outside the gambling and casual games applications. Undoubtedly, every type of dApp should be welcomed, but you need more mainstream types of applications if you want to be successful. Most crypto traders don’t really play casual games with cartoonish graphics. Many crypto traders also prefer to “gamble” directly with cryptocurrency prices rather than with some gambling dApps.
EOS is an active dApp platform, but it needs to be able to attract different types of dApp developers and users if it wants to be taken more seriously. Until then, it’s still fair to “doubt” EOS’ ability to be the Ethereum Killer.
Another typical argument against EOS is its lack of decentralization. While you can say that Delegated Proof of Stake (DPoS) is still decentralized enough, but many Ethereum believers think that it’s a bit too centralized for their liking. It’s fair to say that DPoS sacrifices a certain degree of decentralization because 21 block producers are still just 21 and not hundreds or thousands of entities.
The more decentralized your network is, the more trusted the entire ecosystem will be. When you only have 21 entities securing the entire ecosystem, there are more “opportunities” to collude compared to if you have hundreds or thousands of nodes with the same responsibility. As for now, Ethereum has that advantage.
So, is EOS the Ethereum killer? Well, nobody can truly answer that question. Only time will tell whether EOS can eventually surpass Ethereum or not.