TON is paving a path to the future for crypto

    13 Jun 2024
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    The road of tech giants embracing blockchain is littered with failures. Just look at Meta, which abandoned plans to launch the Diem stablecoin after three messy years and an almighty backlash.

    But there are bright spots — and projects showing a lot more promise. The Open Network (TON) — formerly known as Telegram Open Network — was built to supercharge one of the most-popular messaging apps worldwide. Although Telegram stepped back because of regulatory issues, an independent community swooped in to keep championing the adoption and development of this layer-1 network. TON was born.

    Following years of poor interfaces and limited use cases, TON is achieving what the industry has craved for a long time: enabling users to interact with blockchains and cryptocurrency without even realizing it. And it’s only scratching the surface in exploring how this infrastructure can make the world a better place.

    Why TON could be the ultimate solution for crypto adoption

    TON is all the more significant given how the platform has begun diversifying beyond messaging. Drawing inspiration from the Chinese giant WeChat, it’s started to resemble a “super app” offering everything a user needs in one place. Restaurants can now establish “mini apps” within Telegram that make their websites obsolete, giving customers an easy access point to services, while developers in other industries have unparalleled flexibility thanks to JavaScript.

    The fact these mini apps boast integrated payment solutions is especially bullish given how it could help normalize crypto transactions like never before. TON’s integration helps ensure that each and every payment is transparent and tamper-proof. Telegram has long been a hub for crypto enthusiasts since the early days, but the app’s now transcended into mainstream consciousness — a feat made all the more impressive by the fact it does little marketing.

    There’s a key barrier to entry that’s being torn down here: ensuring consumers and merchants alike no longer have to contend with long and confusing alphanumeric wallets. Countless crypto platforms have struggled to achieve wider market penetration because they’ve suffered from a poor user experience and only appeal to enthusiasts already in the space. By contrast, Telegram is creating a shop window for digital assets within an app that’s already widely used, and cultivating an ecosystem that’ll enable users to do much more than messaging when they’re ready to do so.

    A big part of this puzzle is ensuring that the blockchain infrastructure powering these crypto payments is match fit and able to scale. It would be nothing short of a disaster if Telegram’s slick interface was undermined by sluggish and expensive transfers. TON’s network addresses this by offering fast transactions with low fees — broadening access to cross-border payments and ensuring Telegram can deliver Web3 services to the masses without controlling user funds.

    All of this is an irresistible opportunity for developers who are already deeply familiar with rolling out mini apps on WeChat. There are plenty of similarities when building on TON, and a chance to reach a diverse and engaged audience. An ever-increasing number of mini apps within Telegram will create a positive feedback loop — drawing more users in, and inspiring more businesses to seek a piece of the action.

    The challenges ahead

    While TON’s integration into Telegram means it’s in a strong position to become a  bigger blockchain, this journey hasn’t — and won’t continue to be — without challenges. Fragmentation and silos forming between networks has been a long-running issue, and lasting connections will need to be built with other blockchains to ensure this super app can be enjoyed and relied upon by a broad cross-section of users. The focus on a single token will fuel this exclusion, though work is underway to forge connections between Telegram and EVM-compatible networks.

    In developer circles, a common motto is “build it and they will come.” Telegram’s a bit of a different case here given how it’s already one of the world’s biggest apps. Arm in arm with TON, it must focus on making crypto payments as simple as its messaging tool — and encouraging existing users to try new features without alienating them.

    Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/ton-paving-path-future-crypto

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