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Cardano Developer Emurgo Undaunted By Bear Market As It Shells Out $200M In Investments

The crypto bear market has been brutal, but it has not stopped development in the Cardano ecosystem in any way. The network recently celebrated the completion of its Vasil hard fork, and even though the price of its native token ADA has failed to move in tandem with the development, Cardano developer Emurgo is not discouraged as it reveals a massive fund for developments on the network.

$200 Million To Cardano Projects

CoinDesk caught up with Ken Kodama, founder of Emurgo, at the Token 2049 conference, where it was released that the Cardano developer would be diving deeper into funding for the ecosystem. It was revealed that Emurgo was planning to inject $200 million into the ecosystem for projects built on the network. 

The fund is particularly targeted toward projects that are currently being developed on the Cardano network as well as projects that exist on other networks but plan to integrate support for the blockchain over time. It has also earmarked $100 million out of this fund to go towards investments in Africa, a region where Cardano development has been ramping up in recent months.

ADA price trending at $0.43 | Source: ADAUSD on TradingView.com

The founder explained that the fund was actually coming out from Emurgo’s capital and was meant to go towards the expansion of the network over the next few years. It is especially important now that the upgrade is completed and developers are able to build on the network now. 

Emurgo’s investment into the ecosystem will no doubt help its DeFi growth, which has been struggling through the bear run. With such funding, it will be easier to onboard more builders to the network by providing sound financial support.

Standing Up Against Competitors

Cardano has often received harsh criticism in the space as a lot of investors believe that the network is not growing fast enough. The most recent of these came from Ethereum maxi Evan Van Ness who referred to the blockchain as a “zombie chain.”

In his post, Van Ness pointed out that Cardano saw fewer transactions compared to Uniswap, even though the latter has a much lower market valuation. However, these are two projects that differ greatly in their mode of operation and revenue generation, so this is not the best example for it.

Nevertheless, Cardano continues to lag behind other networks in terms of decentralized finance activity. But it is worthy of note that the network received smart contracts capability much later than its competitors, and the investments in the space have shown a commitment to building out its DeFi dominance.

Cardano’s total DeFi TVL is currently sitting at $76.79 million, accounting for 0.14% of the total DeFi TVL of $54.74 billion. The price of the digital asset is trending at $0.43 with a total market cap of $15 billion. 

Featured image from The Cryptonomist, chart from TradingView.com

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Portland Trail Blazers Cut Jersey Patch Partner Deal With Staking Firm StormX

Amidst CeFi chaos, it’s been a relatively quiet year for Seattle-based staking platform, StormX. Despite signing a multi-year deal jersey patch sponsorship with the NBA’s Portland Trail Blazers last year, that deal has come to a close according to the team on Friday. StormX is yet to comment on the matter.

Let’s review the brief details that we’re hearing through the wire in the last 24 hours regarding the matter, and how things got to this point.

StormX: Past And Present

In July 2021, in the midst of high-flying sports sponsorships being sold left, right and center, the Portland Trail Blazers secured their second-ever jersey patch sponsor with staking platform StormX. It was considered a regional play, as StormX is based just a few hours north of Portland in Seattle, Washington. At it’s time, despite StormX’s relatively quiet public image, it was the first-ever crypto jersey patch in the NBA.

When the deal was established last year, it was reportedly a five-year deal. However, the Trail Blazers seemed to have cut it short – which could be for a number of reasons. Respected Portland sports reporter Casey Holdahl first broke the news that the deal was finished, and that the Blazers are actively searching for a new jersey patch sponsor as the NBA season tip-off is now less than 30 days away.

StormX (STMX) native token has seen a substantial decline since establishing their partnership with the Portland Trail Blazers last year. | Source: STMX-USD on TradingView.com

Speculation: What Happened?

Of course, the market confidence in crypto, particularly around CeFi and staking platforms at large, is much lower than it was a year ago. The fall of Terra Luna, along with CeFi crypto earning platforms, like Voyager and Celsius, have substantially dampened consumer confidence and could have led the Trail Blazers to get cold feet on the future viability of the relationship.

However, the timing is still a bit interesting. As independent Portland sports reporter Sean Highkin reporter noted, the StormX patch was featured on player jerseys as recent as earlier this week for the team’s media day. There are a number of pacific northwest based companies that could serve as viable replacements for the StormX deal, but with no verified leads around what brands might be interested or in conversations with the club, it’s impossible to say who could fill the role for the team next.

The Blazers statement has been brief, stating only: “As we tip-off the 2022-23 season, we will launch a search to identify a new jersey-patch partner as we’ve ended our current relationship with StormX. We’ll share additional information in the near future on this exciting new opportunity.”

Featured image from Pexels, Charts from TradingView.com

The writer of this content is not associated or affiliated with any of the parties mentioned in this article. This is not financial advice.
This op-ed represents the views of the author, and may not necessarily reflect the views of Bitcoinist. Bitcoinist is an advocate of creative and financial freedom alike.

OpenSea Delisting Bug Impacts Another Major NFT Collection

Another OpenSea bug strikes again. It’s a less-than-ideal way to end the week for the once blue chip NFT collection, Azukis. Holders of Azuki NFTs were awakened on Friday to an email from OpenSea that allegedly advised NFT owners that many Azuki NFTs were being delisted. The once blue chip collection has had a substantial fall from grace, but still commands high respect with a consistent floor price around 10 ETH lately.

While re-listings for the project appear to be happening throughout the day on Friday, the error represents another occurrence of ‘accidental delisting’ of a major project on OpenSea. Let’s take a look at more details from the situation and what we can expect next.

An OpenSea Flaw, Or Azuki’s Fate?

Speculation was in no short supply on Friday within the NFT community, as some individuals believed that it could be a major impact on the collection – rather than a mistake on OpenSea’s part. However, the official Azuki Twitter account and product manager Demna were swift in keeping an open line of communication with the community:

We have reached out to @opensea about the delisting emails sent to Azuki holders, awaiting response. Our working theory is that we are facing a similar error/issue as this one. Check Discord for live updates, @DemnaAzuki will also be tweeting as we work to resolve this issue. https://t.co/azJhiXzEE0

— Azuki (@AzukiOfficial) September 30, 2022

Demna has described the issue as a ‘technical error’ on OpenSea, and the NFT marketplace released a statement of their own on Friday morning, proclaiming that there was a “error in our Trust & Safety flagging system” that caused Azukis to be delisted, but that their team worked quickly to resolve the issue.

Ethereum (ETH) based NFT collection, Azuki, had to deal with some hiccups on Friday following an accidental delisting on OpenSea. | Source: ETH-USD on TradingView.com

Not The First Time…

As the Azuki Twitter account referenced, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen this happen with a blue chip collection on OpenSea. Back in June, Bored Ape Yacht Club faced a similar dilemma, with OpenSea briefly delisting some of the BAYC collection. Overall, this isn’t a new issue or an issue that’s particularly clear to understand, however it’s ramifications can be substantial. Luckily for Azukis, the floor price before and after the delisting debacle on Friday was relatively unmoved, dropping from just above 10ETH to just below 10ETH, and currently sitting at 9.97ETH at time of publication.

Nonetheless, it’s still been a substantial fall from grace for a once high-flying project. At one point earlier this year, the project had a daily average sale price just shy of 40ETH, but in recent months, some Azukis have sold for a fraction of that, at times logging daily average sales between 6ETH and 7ETH.

Featured image from Pexels, Charts from TradingView.com

The writer of this content is not associated or affiliated with any of the parties mentioned in this article. This is not financial advice.
This op-ed represents the views of the author, and may not necessarily reflect the views of Bitcoinist. Bitcoinist is an advocate of creative and financial freedom alike.

Microstrategy Is Seeking a Full-Time Lightning Network Engineer to Build a SaaS Platform

The mobile software, cloud-based services, and business intelligence (BI) firm Microstrategy is seeking a full-time Lightning Network software engineer, according to a job listing published this week. The developer, if hired, will build a Lightning Network-based software as a service (SaaS) platform for the company so it can be used for ecommerce use cases and connect with enterprises looking for payment solutions as well.

Microstrategy Looks to Hire Lightning Network Software Developer

After the company purchased 301 bitcoin (BTC) to hold on its balance sheet, the BI firm Microstrategy published a job listing on the web portal smartrecruiters.com. Microstrategy’s job offer is for full-time employment as a Bitcoin Lightning Software Engineer and the chosen individual will be in charge of creating a Lightning Network (LN) SaaS platform.

“As a Bitcoin Lightning Software Engineer at Microstrategy, you will build a Lightning Network-based SaaS platform, providing enterprises with innovative solutions to cyber-security challenges and enabling new ecommerce use-cases,” Microstrategy executive Chen Wan explains.

The interested person must have a Bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field and a “Master’s degree or Ph.D. in computer science/engineering is a plus,” Wan’s job summary details. Furthermore, the candidate should have a “strong knowledge of data structures, algorithms, operating systems, distributed systems, and other fundamental computer science concepts,” the job listing adds.

The Lightning Network is a second layer (L2) scaling solution for Bitcoin that was first introduced in 2015. At the time of writing the LN capacity is 4,905.29 BTC or $95.2 million in USD value. There are 17,203 LN nodes right now and 84,928 payment channels, according to statistics on September 30. The number of LN Tor Nodes is approximately 12,305 and the percentage of LN Tor capacity is 69.3%.

Microstrategy’s engineering job says that the chosen person will build software solutions leveraging the Bitcoin (BTC) blockchain and Lightning Network, as well as “other decentralized finance (defi) technologies.” Furthermore, contributing to the Bitcoin Core codebase and other types of open source cryptocurrency coding projects is “a plus.”

What do you think about Microstrategy’s job offer? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.

Telco giant Deutsche Telekom launches Ethereum validator

Deutsche Telekom will run an Ethereum validator node via its subsidiary T-Systems Multimedia Solutions and has also partnered liquid staking pools provider StakeWise.

German telecom giant Deutsche Telekom has announced support for the Ethereum network, revealing plans to run a validator node on the world’s largest proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchain.

An announcement from the telecommunications giant on Thursday stated that the company move is part of its wider objective of expanding its activities across the blockchain technology and crypto ecosystem.

Deutsche Telekom joins Ethereum staking

According to Deutsche Telekom, its validation infrastructure will be handled by its subsidiary, T-Systems Multimedia Solutions (T-Systems MMS). T-Systems MMS will thus operate a validator node on Ethereum, taking part in the network’s staking mechanism.

Deutsche Telekom also announced that its subsidiary would be partnering liquid staking pools provider Stake Wise, this marking the telco’s entry into liquid staking. 

The StakeWise app allows ETH holders to participate in network validation without having to operate a validator node themselves. This in turn lowers the entry barrier for anyone looking to invest in the cryptocurrency.

After collaborating with Flow, Celo and Polkadot, we are now taking the next decisive step in the blockchain world and are doing pioneering work here with Ethereum. As a node operator, our entry into liquid staking and the close collaboration with a DAO is a novelty for Deutsche Telekom,” said Dirk Röder, Head of Blockchain Solutions Center at T-Systems MMS.

The German telco behemoth’s move comes a few weeks after Ethereum successfully transitioned from the proof-of-work mechanism used on the Bitcoin network.

The Merge, as the Ethereum software upgrade that ushered in the PoS mechanism was called, is set to see energy consumption for Ethereum fall by 99.95% – making the blockchain a more eco-friendly network.

The post Telco giant Deutsche Telekom launches Ethereum validator appeared first on CoinJournal.

Immutable X (IMX) gains over 50% in recent weeks even as most crypto-assets continue to slump

As most coins in the crypto market continue to slump, Immutable X (IMX) has been posting incredible gains over the last week or so. Recent chain news has driven much of this surge but can IMX keep this going? Here are some highlights:

Immutable X (IMX) announced it had raised $200 million to fund the expansion of its ecosystem.

Despite the rally, Immutable X (IMX) still remains significantly lower compared to its ATH

At press time, the coin was trading at around $1.8.

Data Source: Tradingview

Immutable X (IMX) – Price prediction

The recent 50% surge for Immutable X (IMX) came as a welcome surprise for investors. The market over the last few days has been very volatile and it’s been harder every day to find some good news across the board. But despite this, we expect IMX to pull back slightly. 

In fact, at the time of writing, the coin had lost around 5% over the last 24 hours, trading at $1.85. The most important thing to watch right now is the $1.95 mark. If indeed, IMX can find enough bullish uptrend to test or even cross that threshold, then we could see more gains coming in the near term. 

But there still remains a significant risk of a sell-off. When coins rally like this, they will plateau at some point. For IMX, it seems that the point is $1.8. A break below that could lead to more losses.

Is Immutable X (IMX) worth it?

There is no doubt that Immutable X (IMX) has fallen sharply since it reached all-time highs a few months back. The coin has also been on a bearish trend for the most part of this year. 

While this can be a problem for the short term, from a long-term point of view, Immutable X (IMX) still remains a decent buy with significant potential.

The post Immutable X (IMX) gains over 50% in recent weeks even as most crypto-assets continue to slump appeared first on CoinJournal.

MicroStrategy looks to hire a Bitcoin software engineer

MicroStrategy wants to hire a Bitcoin software engineer to build a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform on the Lightning Network.

MicroStrategy, a top business intelligence firm that’s the largest corporate holder of Bitcoin (BTC), is looking to hire a software engineer to help build a Lightning Network-based enterprise platform.

Bitcoin software engineer to build SaaS platform 

On Friday, the US-based technology company announced it was on the hunt for an individual who will be tasked with developing a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform. 

According to the firm, the new platform will offer innovative solutions around cyber-security challenges to enterprises as well as enable new e-commerce use-cases.

The engineers at MicroStrategy are working on some exciting new Lightning apps to help our enterprise customers secure networks, monetize websites, and deploy wallets en masse using Bitcoin,” MicroStrategy Executive Chairman Michael Saylor tweeted, urging those interested in joining the team to apply for the position.

Among other qualifications, one is required to have experience in developing software solutions that leverage the Bitcoin blockchain and Lightning Network, or decentralised finance (DeFi) technologies.

Saylor left his role as MicroStrategy CEO early last month to become the Executive Chairman, stating at the time that he was taking the step to focus more on the company’s Bitcoin strategy. 

Just this month, the company purchased an additional 301 bitcoins to bring its total holdings to 130,000.

The post MicroStrategy looks to hire a Bitcoin software engineer appeared first on CoinJournal.

Paraguayan Senate Rejects Presidential Veto to Cryptocurrency Bill

The Paraguayan Senate has decided to reject the total veto that President Mario Abdo exerted over a proposed cryptocurrency bill on September 2. The Senate defended the initiative, stating that passing the bill would benefit the country due to its effect on tracking the energy consumption of crypto miners and the income that mining taxes would bring to the state.

Paraguayan Senate Affirms Cryptocurrency Bill Approval

The Paraguayan Senate is ready to fight against the president when it comes to the passing of the recently approved cryptocurrency bill. President Mario Abdo exerted a complete veto action on this initiative earlier this month, but the Senate has reaffirmed its support for the sanction of this bill in a new discussion, rejecting the action.

Senators argued that there are several decisions in the bill that would bring benefits to the state and the cryptocurrency industry, including crypto miners. Senator Enrique Salyn Buzarquis vowed in support of the sanction of the bill, stating that the state should formalize collecting taxes on the cryptocurrency mining activities that are taking place in Paraguay. He explained:

It is better for the cryptocurrency business to formalize and charge what corresponds, so I defend the bill.

Abel Gonzalez, another senator, also argued in favor of this sanction, stating that the energy should be used to generate income for the state, instead of being wasted. Senator Daniel Roja also decided to support this bill again, explaining that it might contribute to the use of energy in new forms of employment through cryptocurrency.

All 33 senators rejected the presidential veto on the mentioned bill.

Background and Possible Scenarios

The cryptocurrency bill was vetoed fully, taking several environmental and operational concerns into account. The veto predicts that, if the cryptocurrency mining industry keeps growing, the country might have to import power at some time in the future. The rejection document considers that cryptocurrency mining is “characterized by its high consumption of electrical energy, with intensive use of capital and little use of labor.”

Also, the power fees proposed in the cryptocurrency bill for mining operations have been subject to criticism by the power administration of the country, with some officers stating they were inadequate.

Now, the cryptocurrency bill will be passed to the National Deputy chamber, which will have to discuss whether it also rejects the presidential veto. If this does happen, the bill will be sanctioned finally, even without presidential support. The matter is expected to be resolved before 2023.

What do you think about the evolution of the proposed cryptocurrency bill in Paraguay? Tell us in the comments section below.

CFTC charges Digitex founder over illegal crypto derivatives platform

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), has brought charges against Adam Todd, the founder of crypto derivatives platform Digitex, according to court documents filed in a US court.

The futures market regulator is suing Todd over his operating of an unregistered derivatives trading venue in violation of the Commodity Exchange Act (CEA), the filing showed.

Digitex used multiple entities

As per the CFTC charges filed in the Southern District of Florida, Todd is accused of building and operating the Digitex crypto derivatives trading platform illegally. The defendant is said to have used multiple entities to bring his services to the public, with cited entities being Digitex LLC, Digitex Software Ltd., Digitex Ltd. and Blockster Holdings Ltd. Corp.

The CFTC seeks monetary penalties, disgorgement, a ban against Todd and Digitex.

The action against Digitex is the latest complaint by the CFTC against a crypto entity or individual as regulators increasingly spotlight violations across the industry.

Last week, the agency fined founders of bZeroX Tom Bean and Kyle Kistner for violating the Commodity Exchnage Act in their offerig of leveraged and margined products to retailers. The regulator also filed a complaint against decentralised autonomous organisation Ooki DAO.

The post CFTC charges Digitex founder over illegal crypto derivatives platform appeared first on CoinJournal.

Double Jump Tokyo Obtains Sega IP Rights For New Blockchain Game

Blockchain game developer Double Jump Tokyo has announced that the company has obtained rights to a Sega IP for use in a new game.

Double Jump Tokyo Gets License To Sega’s Sangokushi Taisen For New Blockchain Game

As revealed by the developer in a blogpost, the new game will focus on the theme of “Sangokushi” (Three Kingdoms).

This blockchain-based project will be a trading card game, and will feature artwork from Sega’s “Sangokushi Taisen” IP.

Sega is one of the most well-known names in gaming, with Sonic being the company’s most recognizable IP. The firm doesn’t just develop and distribute console videogames, but also arcades, merch, and other products.

Double Jump Tokyo is a Japanese startup that specializes in developing NFT solutions and blockchain games. The company already has experience working with huge developers like Bandai Namco and Square Enix.

For this new project, the developer will handle the development of the game, while Sega will only provide the license for Sangokushi Taisen.

The game will be built on the Oasys blockchain, a new architecture designed for games of this kind by Double Jump Tokyo in collaboration with other industry-leading firms.

Hironobu Ueno, CEO and Founder of the firm, commented, “with a unique architecture optimized for blockchain games, Oasys aims to solve obstacles for gamers, offering fast transactions and zero gas fees and providing users with a more comfortable gameplay experience.”

The Oasys blockchain utilizes the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) mechanism for reaching consensus, meaning that the network is environmentally friendly.

Games making use of NFTs and general blockchain technology have noticed some tremendous growth in recent times as they have gained more traction. Even during the recent crypto industry-wide bear market, the sector has continued to perform well.

Though, there has also been some outrage over games of this kind from traditional gamers. At the start of this year, Sega said that they may back off from blockchain games if the players oppose the idea.

This new project implies that the company intends to go forth with their plans, at least for now. At the moment, there isn’t any confirmed release date or platform for Double Jump Tokyo’s Sangokushi Taisen web3 game.

BTC Price

At the time of writing, Bitcoin’s price floats around $19.2k, up 4% in the last seven days. Over the past month, the crypto has lost 4% in value.

The below chart shows the trend in the price of the coin over the last five days.

The value of the crypto seems to have been mostly moving sideways during the last few days | Source: BTCUSD on TradingView
Featured image from Double Jump Tokyo, chart from TradingView.com