Telegram’s fifth-generation blockchain cryptocurrency Gram is launched by October 31, 2019. Gram will run on Telegram Open Network (TON). TON Labs is one of the main independent developers of TON. CEO Alexander Filatov and CTO Mitja Goroshevsky, TON Labs, claims it is “more decentralized than Bitcoin,” and has “largest pool of users in history.”
In early 2018, TON raised $1.7 billion from private entities. If it fails to launch Gram by October 31, its contract states it will have to return the amount back after deducting development cost.
Gram will be accessible for the entire user base of Telegram; estimated to be 200 million. This will make it the largest decentralized cryptocurrency in the world. It will also be able to handle millions of transactions per second.
On the flip side, Gram’s parent company Telegram is banned in Russia and Iran.
There is also general secrecy around the project. Its source code was released on September 9, 2019. Several whitepapers were also released; one each on TON, the blockchain on which it will run, the virtual machine and the software language that will be used in TON’s smart contracts. What is concerning is that a whitepaper on TON’s consensus mechanism was just announced but not released. This leads to doubts over whether the mechanism is in place or not.
Gram is expected to herald the fifth generation of blockchains, with state-of-the-art features including dynamic sharding protocol, tight-coupling of blockchain and multichain networks.
Sharding is the process of splitting databases into small pieces called shards. Each shard contains all of the required information. They are homogeneous. These shards are constantly rearranged to form workchains. Thus, workchains are heterogeneous. All workchains are consolidated in a masterchain.
The masterchain has a Byzantine Fault Tolerant Proof of Stake (BFT PoS) consensus mechanism for settlement finality.
Tight-coupling is a scenario in which individual shardchains listed in different workchains can interact with each other.