Fantom (FTM): A Threat to Layer-2?

This article discusses the Fantom Network (FTM) which is poised to compete with many popular layer-2’s including Arbitrum, Polygon and Optimism. A massive upgrade is coming this year to the network which is years in the works.

Fantom the Ethereum Helper

Fantom was created in 2018 by a brilliant computer scientist, Dr. Ahn Byung Ik. Fantom differs from Ethereum and other blockchain technology in that it is a DAG, or “Directed Acyclic Graph”. The advantage of a DAG is that it uses a parent transaction model in which the receiving end of a transaction verifies the validity, which saves on consensus time [1]. This erases the needs for miners to confirm consensus, which in turn lowers fees immensely. Fantom uses a unique consensus mechanism known as Lachesis.

Lachesis allows transactions to achieve finality in a few seconds, and for only a few cents. This mechanism is designed to function with multiple coding languages which saves developers time. Happy developers is one of the most important qualities of a good network. Instead of sending blocks to each other, Lachesis takes many snapshots between nodes and at certain times places transactions in order. This greatly increases the throughput and scalability of the network, which already has the DAG benefit.

Fantom FTM Dag Blockchain
Dag vs. Blockchain Fantom (FTM)

Fantom gives praises to the king of smart contracts, Ethereum. By 2020, Ethereum had established clear dominance in the market, with 99% of decentralized applications in the space building upon it. The total value locked, unique native programming language, and years of development put Ethereum far ahead of other networks [1].

While Fantom agrees that Ethereum is king, it has shortfalls that hamper the network, especially during times of high usage. Ethereum could never imagine the massive scale and demand it would experience as a network. If you used Ethereum during the 2020-2021 bull market you will remember the pain of the gas fees and failed transactions. While most Fantom bulls do not realize, Fantom was created to enhance Ethereum, much like Polygon, Arbitrum and Optimism.

Fantom aims to enhance Ethereum with an easy to use bridge, familiar Ethereum coding language, and the Lachesis mechanism mentioned above. Fantom users can also stake their FTM tokens and receive fUSD a stablecoin to be used on Ethereum. Fantom wins the layer-2 race because the network is already usable, the technology is here, and the Fantom virtual machine is just around the corner.

Fantom FVM upgrade
Fantom FVM Upgrades

Fantom Upgrades

Before we discuss the Fantom virtual machine, and the return of the brilliance that is Andre Cronje, I would like to be transparent about my FTM holdings. When I first wrote about FTM I was on the fence, and then the Luna collapse destroyed the crypto market, and I dove into the research for several days. When this crash occurred, I took many lower conviction altcoin losses and slowly consolidated them into FTM, which is now my largest position, even above my Bitcoin holdings. I did this move because of the Ethereum enhancing mission, but also because of the tokenomics changes and the impending virtual machine upgrade.

Now that Andre is back, the chain is seeing impeccable growth and development. Andre has a passionate and immensely brilliant quality about him much like Vitalik Buterin one of Ethereum’s founders. The FVM is also slated to begin the test net in Q3, we will discuss the benefits. Look at the graphic above, courtesy of the Fantom Foundation [2]. This cited article speaks to Ethereum’s challenge with bottlenecks. Ethereum, when under pressure spends a lot of its time verifying the state of smart contracts rather than processing and executing.

To help solve the storage problem, Fantom created a more flexible and scalable method by eliminating the need to map extra information which bogged Ethereum down. Much like the ingenuity that created Lachesis consensus, which removes unnecessary bandwidth, this storage solution does the same. Adding this storage solution to the FVM, Fantom is making strides to champion the Ethereum enhancing solution.

The FVM is slated to be 8.1 times faster than the current Ethereum Virtual Machine. Remember this virtual machine is already vastly more efficient than the Ethereum main net. The machine is also slated to use 98% less storage because of the reduction in over-verification. Reducing storage needs is massive for longevity, because if the world is to mass adopt smart-contract platforms, millions of gigabytes will be required to store the network transaction history.

Combine this with the tokenomics upgrades which we will discuss in our next article, and it is easy to see why Fantom has lead the charge this year. Fantom and its ecosystem plays which include many projects is poised to explode by 2025. Some of my favorites include Equal Dex, Tarot and Beets. These will be covered in the next few weeks. We have already covered Equal [here], and we hope you saw our article on larger cap networks when FTM was closer to 20 cents. Please remember, none of this is financial advice, stay safe out there!

Trezor Model One
Patrick O’Neil

About Patrick O’Neil


Patrick is an avid technology and gaming enthusiast. Patrick taught himself how to assemble computers in 2010 and was always fascinated with the gaming market. In 2019 he decided to sell his grayscale Ethereum funds and dive into the world of crypto firsthand. 

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