3. Failure of Facebook’s Blockchain Ambitions Spawns Fresh Chains
- Using a programming language called Move, Aptos Labs seeks to make transactions quicker, cheaper and more secure – as is the case with .
- With the goal of becoming the home for Web3, Aptos Labs has taken direct aim at other faster and cheaper alternatives to Ethereum, perhaps most notably Solana, another blockchain in the Rust language family.
Aptos Labs blockchain, a startup with its roots in Meta’s failed cryptocurrency ambitions, launched its mainnet on Monday, becoming the first of the Facebook spin-off networks to premier and putting to test its multibillion-dollar valuation.
Using a programming language called Move, Aptos Labs seeks to make transactions quicker, cheaper and more secure – as is the case with .
Move also powered the network of Meta’s cryptocurrency project Diem, which faced strong resistance from regulators and eventually sold its assets as its attempt at a stablecoin was met with strong regulatory blowback.
In a Medium blog post, Aptos Labs said the launch is “step one in a long journey to create universal and fair access to decentralised applications for billions of people through a safe, scalable, and upgradable blockchain.”
Whether Aptos Labs’ blockchain can rival the likes of Ethereum, Solana, Polygon or the legions of other blockchains all vying for decentralized applications, developers and users, remains to be seen.
Nevertheless, Aptos Labs has received backing from a string of notable investors having closed a US$200m funding round back in March led by a16z, with participation from Tiger Global, FTX Ventures, Coinbase Ventures, Binance Labs and PayPal Ventures.
According to the Aptos Explorer website, the Aptos Labs blockchain processed about four transactions per second on Tuesday and is designed to be able to execute over 160,000 “non-trivial” Move transactions per second.
By way of comparison, major card issuers like Visa and Mastercard process something in the region of 75,000 transactions per second.
With the goal of becoming the home for Web3, Aptos Labs has taken direct aim at other faster and cheaper alternatives to Ethereum, perhaps most notably Solana, another blockchain in the Rust language family.
But cheaper and faster alone do not a heavily utilized blockchain make.
While Ethereum remains one of the most expensive blockchains to transact on, with gas fees still high relative to competitors, it is still the most heavily utilized blockchain for a slew of decentralized applications.
The bulk of stablecoins are also transacted on Ethereum’s blockchain as well, especially Tether, the world’s most widely used stablecoin, and the sheer volume of tokens and transactions on Ethereum remains head and shoulders above other blockchains.
Aptos Labs will have its work cut out for it, in an increasingly crowded space for which network and incumbency effects continue to provide early leaders such as Ethereum a significant first-mover advantage.
Solana, Polygon, Polkadot and Avalanche were all touted at “Ethereum killers” but have so far barely put a dent in Ethereum’s formidable lead.
Ethereum has also successfully transitioned to a Proof-of-Stake method to secure its blockchain, dramatically reducing energy requirements for transactions and paving the way for further upgrades that could significantly reduce transaction fees.