What is Aion?

Aion is a Blockchain network that is designed to overcome issues of scalability, privacy, and interoperability.  These issues are present in a lot of current blockchain projects and slow down mainstream adoption.  There are 2 big pieces of this project that will help solve these issues.

The first is Aion-1, which is being called a third-generation blockchain.  Bitcoin’s blockchain is considered a first-generation blockchain because it’s function is mostly limited to transferring digital assets in a decentralized and P2P fashion.  Ethereum would be considered a second-generation blockchain because it enables Smart Contracts, which allow for business logic to also be a part of a digital asset exchange.  Aion-1 will take this 1 step further and allow these different blockchains to communicate with each other.  The important thing here is that private blockchains will be able to communicate with public blockchains, which is something that large businesses are likely to prefer.

The second big piece is the Aion network, which essentially provides a protocol and standard for different systems to communicate with each other (interoperability).  This is the key that makes Aion-1 a third-generation blockchain.  Right now you cannot just send Bitcoin to an Ethereum wallet, or have an Ethereum application trigger a Bitcoin wallet to send funds.  Here is a screenshot taken from their white paper to help visualize this:

The Aion Token (AION)

The Aion token is the fuel used to operate the Aion-1 blockchain.  This is similar to how Ethereum uses ETH as gas for its network.  AION tokens will also be used when establishing bridges between blockchains, as well as for creating new blockchains.  Lastly, AION tokens are used as an incentive to maintain the integrity of the Aion network.

The AION token will allow for staking, which in this case means backing a validator.  A validator actively participates in the consensus process, but needs a large backing to do so.  A validator’s rewards are then shared with their backers.  Staking can be a nice way to generate passive income, so this is something to keep a close eye on.

Aion’s paper on its token use mentions that it does have other token uses being researched and evaluated.  Since these are not set in stone I will not list them here.  You can read more about those in detail here if you are interested though.

Aion ICO Details

Aion is selling their tokens in 4 separate sales.  A private sale, pre-sale, and public sale (split into 2 phases).  Phase 1 of the public sale is capped at 10Mil tokens and takes place late 2017.  The second phase will take place in 2018 after the completion of a major Aion milestone release.  Personally, this is how most projects should structure their token sales because it helps give incentive for the team to produce their product.

The private and pre-sales are already over.  They had the benefit of being able to participate in a Token Release Schedule (TRS).  This TRS essentially gives a bonus to holders that take their distribution over a period of time instead of all at once.  Unsold tokens in the public sale will be distributed to TRS contributors before the TRS end date (late 2018).  Details are found here.

The private sale raised $15Mil ($0.50/AION), and the public pre-sale raised ~$8Mil($0.75-$1/AION).  The public sale price per token will be $1+.  The price will likely increase as more are sold, but this has not been specified yet by Aion.

The only accepted cryptocurrency will be Ether (ETH), but they do provide Shapeshift integration to help convert other cryptocurrencies to ETH.  The AION token was released following the close of the pre-Sale, so it will be available before the public sale kicks off.  Here is a breakdown of the token distribution:

 

Aion Team

Aion has a strong and large team (20 according to their team page).  They even have a video in which you can hear from multiple team members, which provides a great level of transparency.  The CEO is Matthew Spoke who has more than 4 years of experience working exclusively in the blockchain space.  He also serves on the board of directors for the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance.  Looking at the advisors also inspires confidence with people like Anthony Di Lorio and Michael Terpin making an appearance.

Need something else to give you more confidence in the project?  Business partners from their site are below:

The project is nothing short of ambitious.  Blockchains are still a relatively new technology, and trying to make them talk to each other will be no easy task.  This is a project where the team has to be exceptional and large enough to work through the countless hurdles they will have.  It’s also important to have business connections so when your product is ready you have people you can pitch it too.  I think the team checks all of these boxes.

 

Summary:

Projects aiming to solve the interoperability issues are going to be the ‘next’ Bitcoin or Ethereum in terms of explosive growth.  I think the claim of being a third-generation blockchain is very fitting and will only help this space come closer to mainstream adoption.  The team is strong and they aim to solve a real problem, so I think this is one to keep an eye on.

 

Links to Aion’s social and important information:

 

Disclaimer: The above references an opinion and is for information purposes only.  It is not intended to be investment advice.  Seek a duly licensed professional for investment advice!

 

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