Year in Review 2020 — Matic Network
In the midst of the global pandemic, 2020 hasn’t been an easy year for anyone. Regardless, Matic has pushed ahead with full vigor on our mission to scale the global blockchain ecosystem, achieving a tremendous amount in terms of development, adoption, and outreach.
After laying our technical foundations in 2019, 2020 has seen Matic Network garner the imagination of the global blockchain community. We have officially welcomed 77 new DApps into the Matic ecosystem, launched a variety of highly successful developer adoption initiatives, forged a range of valuable partnerships, and we’re now in the final stage of our mainnet rollout, ushering in full decentralization.
Due to our technical advantages, Matic Network has grown to become the most widely adopted Layer 2 platform in the industry by far. We’ve made huge moves in DeFi, NFTs, gaming and much more.
Read below for a full recap of our progress and achievements in 2020.
Our Counter Stake incentivised testnet event began in November 2019. It was a huge success from the outset, and we were delighted by the overwhelming amount of interest from the community. After conducting thorough testing during Stage 0, Stage 1 of Counter Stake was launched in February of this year.
The aim of this Stage 1 was to release staking contract details and incremental features of the Validator nodes. With the help of our testnet validators, we comprehensively tested the network to identify and repair any issues, and have achieved a flawlessly running network.
There were 300+ registrations for Stage 1 and we onboarded more than 150+ validators through 6 testnets.
Stage 2 of Counter Stake began in early May. During this stage our validators were essentially attempting to ‘break’ the network, in order to ensure that all bugs and issues have been identified and rectified during Stage 1.
Our validators were encouraged to test the network for resilience against explicit exploits that could take down the network and try to successfully execute an economic attack and find bugs in the system/code.
Stage 2 marked the final hurdle before our mainnet was ready to launch.
After more than 2 years of relentless hard work by the Matic team, developers, investors, and advisors, the first iteration of Matic Network mainnet went live in May.
Although this was undoubtedly the most significant milestone on our journey to date, this was just the beginning of a three-step rollout strategy which would lead us to full network decentralization.
Staking Goes Live
MATIC staking went live in June. As a Layer 2 solution utilizing a network of Proof-of-Stake validators for asset security, staking is an integral part of the Matic ecosystem. Essentially, validators stake their MATIC tokens as collateral to become part of the network’s PoS consensus mechanism and receive MATIC tokens in return.
MATIC holders who wish to stake but do not wish to be a validator, or aren’t able to be a validator, can delegate their tokens to a validator of their choice and still take part in the staking process and earn staking rewards.
Our staking rewards are among the highest in the industry, still standing at more than 28% APR. We have a detailed tutorial on how to stake MATIC here: https://buff.ly/3eJUOeH
Staking Rollout Phase 1
The first step of the Matic mainnet was launched with an initial set of validators including the Matic Foundation nodes and some select validators who have been working closely with the Matic team (our DApp Partner Validators). These included professional validators and marquee DApps on Matic Network.
Staking Rollout Phase 2
Phase 2 saw a significant increase in the decentralization of Matic Network as we opened up the network to 30+ additional public validators, providing a strong backbone of industry leading top-tier network validators.
Phase 2 was a continuous phase in which additional validators slots were opened gradually. This ensured the smooth addition of external validators onto the network, and the effective resolution of any unforeseen issues that were encountered.
Public Delegations to External Nodes Went Live
During the currently ongoing final phase of our network rollout, we’re opening up validator slots to community-run nodes to supplement our strong backbone top-tier validators onboarded during Phase 2.
All stakers are required to re-delegate their tokens to external validators, before the Foundation nodes are turned off by the end of January, 2021. Stakers can now choose between the 71 external validators for delegation.
Turning off Foundation nodes in January will signal the most significant milestone in the journey of Matic Network so far – full network decentralization!
With our mainnet live, we are now able to provide our ecosystem of DApps with the infrastructure to overcome the traditional performance bottlenecks of the blockchain ecosystem, to allow DApps to be able to handle large volumes of users with ease.
The mainnet launch signalled the beginning of the next exciting chapter for Matic Network, and adoption has continued to snowball throughout 2020.
DeFi on Matic
DeFi products on Matic Network are able to handle a large number of users and transactions without slowing down the Ethereum blockchain, enabling them to reach mass adoption without performance issues, and providing a much better user experience for DeFi product users.
For this reason, DeFi projects have been flocking to Matic Network since our DeFi push began in August. In the past 5 months we have welcomed 18 DeFi projects into the Matic ecosystem.
Automated Market Maker (AMM) DEX by Wazirx
Under-collateralized lending by EasyFi
Lending protocol EasyFi is launching under-collateralized loans on Matic Network, enabled by credit scoring system TrustScore built by Koinfox (TrustScore is built using Proof of Reputation based smart contracts also powered by Matic).
With this system, DeFi users will be empowered over time with more borrowing capacity and lower collateralization requirements.
Synthetic assets by OroPocket
OroPocket has launched Open Finance protocol on Matic Network to give exposure to real-world assets through DeFi (aka synthetic assets), which are gaining huge popularity in the DeFi movement. This enables custody of real-world assets on blockchain, unlocking the value of these underlying assets.
Gaming & NFTs
Technical bottlenecks with Layer 1 blockchains have resulted in gaming DApps which are not only slow and uninteresting but also unable to handle complex gameplay mechanics. Such games have no appeal to mainstream gamers, who are used to a highly streamlined gaming experience. Matic Network, however, allows developers to craft a seamless gaming experience on the blockchain.
An increasing number of gaming DApp developers are recognising the benefits that Matic Network provides in enabling their DApps to flourish and gain market adoption. Not only do we cater to upcoming games, but we are also powering some of the industry’s largest and most anticipated blockchain-powered games.
Matic has long established itself as the go-to platform for gaming DApps looking for effective scaling. 34 games have onboarded to Matic in 2020!
Highly anticipated Neon District is a cyberpunk adventure RPG and the flagship of the leading blockchain game development studio, Blockade Games. Players strategize and fight to progress through a sci-fi dystopia while collecting NFT items.
Blockade Games has decided to onboard Neon District to Matic Network in order to power their game with the performance required to achieve the mainstream adoption aimed for. Neon District will run entirely on Matic, including its in-game NFT system.
Terra Virtua is the world’s first immersive digital collectibles platform, with collectibles spanning the biggest names in the entertainment industry including Netflix’s Lost in Space, The Godfather Series and other top creations.
Together, Terra Virtua’s immersive collectibles and Matic’s production ready network will supercharge the NFT ecosystem and take it mainstream for millions of users.
The Sandbox is a decentralized metaverse gaming platform with over 40m+ downloads, which leverages NFTs and blockchain technology to empower creators, artists and gamers. The Sandbox team is backed by Animoca Brands, one of the largest publicly listed gaming companies active in the blockchain space.
As a general-purpose platform, Matic is capable of powering a limitless array of DApp types. The main reasons why DApp developers in general love Matic Network include:
– Near-instant blockchain transactions, with block times of ~2 seconds.
– Transaction fees less than 1/1000th of the fees on the Ethereum mainchain (see here for a detailed comparison).
– End-to-end technical support for developers with assistance with developer tooling
– Seamless migration for existing Ethereum DApps (and comprehensive assistance with migration for DApps from other blockchains).
– Developer support programs including our DSP and Build-n-Earn incentive program.
Matic is home to a wide range of decentralized applications. 25 DApps which fall outside of the categories of DeFi and gaming have joined the Matic ecosystem in 2020.
NIFTEX enables NFT investing through partial ownership by working with NFT owners to structure launches of NFT fractions, known as ‘Shards’, allowing people to purchase a certain percentage of the asset in question.
The concept is comparable to company stock issuance and ownership. This removes the barriers to ownership of expensive NFT assets for the average person, enabling them to own a small piece of the pie.
Zawadi is a mobile ticket delivery platform powered by Matic that provides event organizers and ticketing companies with the tools and APIs to deliver tokenized event tickets to their attendees through social media messaging apps.
Recently Zawadi integrated with the world’s largest event ticketing platform, Eventbrite, and is already gaining a lot of traction. By integrating with Eventbrite, they now have access to 900,000 event creators managing over 4,000,000 events annually. That’s a lot of tickets!
DistributedTown aims to be the new standard in Collaborative Economics. It’s building a network of interconnected, self-sovereign communities (DAOs).
By onboarding to Matic, DiTo will be provided with the high-performance infrastructure to be able to achieve their mission of facilitating the creation of an ecosystem of easy-to-use DAOs with an intuitive UX, thus encouraging widespread adoption.
In a major move for Matic Network and DeFi as a whole, we were thrilled to announce that some of the industry’s biggest stablecoins, USDT, USDC and DAI are now available for public use on Matic Network!
By utilizing Matic Network, users can now send USDT, USDC and DAI at lightning-fast speeds at a fraction of the cost of the gas fees on Ethereum. This not only provides a superior user experience, enabling funds and capital to be seamlessly transferred around the globe, but also assists with Ethereum’s congestion crisis by taking the strain from the Ethereum mainchain.
Slow transaction speeds and high costs are two of the most limiting factors preventing DeFi from flourishing. We are committed to removing these barriers for all building blocks of DeFi to enable the ecosystem to thrive.
Cooperation and collaboration is key to the success of the decentralized movement. Therefore, throughout 2020 we have forged 16 strategic partnerships with valuable industry players to improve the developer and user experience of Matic Network and to help the industry as a whole to mature and thrive.
Chainlink’s market-leading price feed oracles are now available on the Matic mainnet as our recommended oracle solution! Matic Network is the first blockchain following Ethereum to actively integrate Chainlink’s oracle services.
Devs on Matic can now leverage the Chainlink decentralised oracle network to facilitate access to real-world data for smart contracts running on Matic. This has major implications for a range of DApps from DeFi to gaming.
Matic has joined the first cohort of Ren Alliance utility members to enable cross-chain asset support on Matic Network sidechains.
Matic Network will therefore be able to provide the transactional infrastructure for fast, cheap and secure BTC transfers, in the same way we are currently providing for Ethereum-based assets. This will essentially give Matic the similar end user features as the Lightning Network.
We’re collaborating with LTO Network to create a range of enterprise products in order to bridge Indian and European ecosystems.
Our first product is a next-gen blockchain-powered supply chain solution designed to combat the problem of QR code replicability by incorporating NFTs into the process.
Developer Ecosystem Initiatives
Since the Matic mainnet became live, one of our primary focuses has been to continue to accelerate our previously established Dev Drive initiatives and implement new ones. Hence, we launched our large-scale developer initiatives for mainnet adoption.
These initiatives cater to developers with DApps at all stages of development – from inception to fully-fledged and operational. Our goal is to serve as more than simply a scaling solution, but as an entire collaborative ecosystem of developers and DApps building on Matic Network which will become stronger together as the ecosystem expands.
Developer Support Program
Our Developer Support Program was initially established in March of 2019 with the aim of equipping budding blockchain developers with the essential support required for getting their projects off the ground.
Through our Developer Support Program, budding blockchain developers are being provided with technical, financial, talent sourcing, and outreach-related support. We believe it’s imperative that we position developers in the best way possible for them to build impactful, innovative solutions. We are taking these efforts globally, not just in India.
The DSP has helped numerous Matic ecosystem projects to find their footing in the industry and begin to thrive, and in July of this year we decided to expand the Developer Support Program to $2M from a previous size of $500k amid growing interest in Matic Network from the developer community!
Matic Build-n-Earn is an incentive program offering monthly recurring benefits, designed for developers and teams that need a reliable, predictable source of cash flow during DApp development and maintenance of the application lifecycle before they have reached the point of sustained growth.
Build-n-Earn is available for any DApps at any stage of their lifecycle, provided they are building on Matic Network. The program is designed to enable developers to create the best possible version of their application.
Since launching Build-n-Earn in July, we have assisted 36 burgeoning DApps to flourish and thrive, helping them to raise more than $105,000 to continue their development!
DeFi Incubator Program
Amid huge interest from many DeFi teams looking to utilize Matic’s layer 2 solution, we initiated our multi-million dollar DeFi-focused incubator program in late July! Benefits of the incubator include:
– Assistance with financial and business development support.
– Matic Ecosystem tokens to be used to help DeFi projects.
– Access to and assistance with a range of developer tooling.
Alongside our hackathon partners, Devfolio, we’ve hosted and attended upwards of 100 hackathons at top educational institutions across India this past year in India alone, in addition to prominent Ethereum hackathons globally. These efforts are constantly ongoing.
Our aim with these hackathons is to not only demonstrate the power of Matic Network to young developers, but to promote the advantages and benefits of blockchain in general in order to bring new waves of talent into the space.
Industry Events & Community Outreach
We relish any opportunity to connect with the broader community to share our insights into Matic Network and the blockchain industry in general. After all, engaging with members of the wider crypto community is the most effective way to spread the word of Matic Network’s mission and encourage the growth of our supporter base.
Therefore, we have supported and attended a wide variety of global industry events and meetups, engaged in countless interviews & AMAs, and hosted a plethora of Matic Masterclass sessions during the past 12 months. Below are a few examples of our efforts.
Hosting Bangalore’s first ever fintech + blockchain design meetup alongside Devfolio!
We recently initiated our monthly Community Calls, to connect the Matic team with the community on a personal level and discuss our journey together. Every month, our founders will discuss key highlights and all the exciting progress we’ve made in the previous month and what’s in store moving forward.
If you missed our first Community Call this month, catch up here:
During 2019 our community grew from a handful of followers to an army of adamant supporters. 2020 has seen this parabolic community growth continue. In addition to huge growth on our core social platforms, namely Twitter, Telegram and Reddit, we have continued to expand our online presence through a variety of other platforms.
We are extremely proud of and thankful to have one of the strongest communities in the space. Our supporters who are following our journey can see our progress advancing week by week, and therefore know they are part of something big.
Awareness of Matic is continuing to increase worldwide. We now have many rapidly growing local communities to cater for different geographical regions.
Join your local community and help to further the conversation about Matic in your region as we continue to push ahead on our mission to scale the global blockchain ecosystem.
Closing Thoughts: Onward to the New Decentralized Paradigm
We are proud to say that we have come a long way on our mission to bring mass adoption to the blockchain space. 2020 has undoubtedly seen Matic Network soar to new heights on many fronts.
2020 has been the year of the emergence of decentralized finance in particular. Increasing interest in DeFi across the industry has led to severe congestion on the Ethereum blockchain, meaning slow transaction times and very high fees. Matic’s high-speed, extremely low-cost infrastructure is therefore becoming an increasingly critical component of the blockchain ecosystem, which is reflected in our exponential adoption rates.
We’re now in the final stage of our mainnet rollout, ushering in full decentralization. Throughout 2021, adoption will continue to grow, our developer ecosystem will continue to strengthen, and we’ll be branding out into the enterprise arena.
As we march forward let’s not forget everything that has gotten us this far and keep the momentum building. There is so much more in store for Matic Network and our community! 2021 is shaping up to be an incredible year for the industry, with Matic Network leading the way on the Layer 2 scaling front.
Cheers to the next era of the exciting journey of Matic Network! 🥂