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IOStoken (IOST) is the utility token of IOS, a next-gen blockchain platform that enables developers to deploy highly scalable dApps and provides users with a decentralized way to exchange goods and services. The IOS system combines Efficient Distributed Sharding (EDS) with a proof-of-believability (PoB) consensus mechanism to provide high transaction throughput and horizontal scalability. By implementing those two technologies, it can potentially process up to 100,000 transactions per second while guaranteeing security.

The IOS team believes limitations surrounding flexibility, scalability, and high fees are preventing the mass adoption of blockchain technology. IOS aims to fix those problems by providing a new way for service providers to serve their consumers. The platform will function like a mix of a decentralized BitTorrent and decentralized Alibaba.

By using IOS, developers will be able to easily launch dApps with sophisticated applications, such as cloud computing, online advertising, e-commerce, gambling, online gaming, prediction markets, markets for virtual goods and services, and more.

How IOStoken Works

IOStoken is the currency for transactions made on the IOS platform as well as compensation for nodes that validate new blocks and power smart contracts. To improve its transaction speed and throughput, IOST impelments a proof-of-believability consensus mechanism that eliminates the need for resource intensive proof-of-work protocols. Proof-of-believability is essentially a randomized version of a proof-of-stake protocol.

Proof-of-stake protocols tend to unwittingly cause centralization as holders with the most tokens end up having the most power. To prevent that from happening, the IOS team has released a token called Servi that measures user contribution on the network. Servi is meant to encourage users to help develop the platform.

Key Properties

Can’t be traded – Servi can’t be exchanged or traded and can’t be used as a currency.

Destroys itself – After a block is validated, the system automatically clears the validator’s Servi balance. This way nodes with high believability scores can fairly take turns validating new blocks.

Issues automatically – Servi is automatically deposited into a user’s wallet after they make certain contributions to the community, such as evaluating services provided by other users, providing community services, and other contributions.

Within the IOS system, a node is validated based on its past contributions and behaviors. IOST plays a critical role in calculating a user’s believability score. Believability factors used by the mechanism include Servi balance, IOST balance, user behavior, and reviews. The believability range is between -1 and +1.

IOStoken vs. Other Cryptocurrencies

IOST is somewhat similar to existing scaling solutions like Zilliqa and EOS. The IOS team acknowledges this fact and considers projects like Zilliqa and EOS as classmates trying to solve the same problem using different approaches, rather than competitors.

Zilliqa implements sharding to enable parallel transaction processing, while EOS has adopted a new consensus mechanism known as DPoS to improve transaction processing speed. IOST’s solution for handling multiple transactions simultaneously is its proof-of-believability consensus mechanism combined with sharding technology. To fulfill its ambitious use case, IOS introduces the following:

Hyper Universe Distributed System (HUDS) – IOS wants to provide a platform that can host a wide range of services, from large enterprises like Ebay or Amazon to small businesses. The platform will use a distributed storage mechanism known as the Hyper Universe Distributed System (HUDS) for this purpose. Users and service providers will be able to store data on multiple nodes without any risk of downtime or censorship.

Efficient Distributed Sharding (EDS) – the IOS team developed an innovative sharding scheme that makes shards sufficiently large and resistant to bias using a distributed randomness protocol that introduces transparent randomness into the sharding process.

Atomix – a two-step inter-shard atomic commit protocol that guarantees transaction atomicity in a Byzantine setting. IOS uses a Byzantine Fault Tolerance mechanism to enable nodes to choose who validates the next block.

On-Chain Only

Unlike many existing scaling solutions, IOS is completely on-chain, which means its blockchain doesn’t have to deal with any security issues caused by on-chain and off-chain communication. IOS is also moving away from staking as a consensus mechanism to reduce the risk of centralization. The developers believe proof-of-believability is a major improvement that can provide better performance without risking security or causing centralization.

IOStoken Pricing, Market Cap and Volume

The supply of IOST caps at 21,000,000,000 tokens. The tokens are distributed as follows:

40% was sold in a private token sale
35% is held by the IOS Foundation for developing the ecosystem
12.5% is set aside for community incentives
10% is held by the IOS team
2.5% is held by early investors and advisors

The private token sale was held in Q1 2018 and raised 35,000 ETH. The proceeds will be used to fund the development of the platform and relevant applications and technologies. The tokens distributed after the private sale are ERC20 compatible. They will be converted at a 1:1 ratio into native IOStokens once a stable version of the IOS mainnet is deployed.

IOST’s market capitalization almost reached ~$930 million USD after its launch, but its price stabilized once the initial hype died down. Its market cap now hovers at around ~$250 million. It’s still too early to tell if the project will be a success and the developers refuse to speculate about the eventual price of IOST.

Buying, Storing and Selling IOStoken

IOST is available for trading on a number of exchange platforms including Binance, Huobi, OKEX, BigONE, KuCoin, and CEX. In terms of daily trading volume, Huobi and Binance are the largest.

IOST is an ERC20 token, which means it can be stored in any wallet that is compatible with the ERC20 standard. Community members recommend MyEtherWallet (MEW) for storage, but Ethereum wallets like Mist, Parity, Jaxx, and MetaMask will also work fine.

Liquidity of IOStoken

IOST is a fairly new project and its mainnet isn’t expected to go live until late 2019. As such, the IOStoken has relatively poor liquidity outside of Chinese exchanges at this time. This will likely change once the platform’s mainnet is launched, but it is still yet to be seen how liquid the token will be.