Weekly Crypto Recap (January 8th-14th)



Here's a weekly recap from Metaverse.SG and the most notable crypto events this week were:

  1. The launch of Polygon's zkEVM.

  2. Introduction to the Kira Network.

  3. Discussions comparing swETH and rswETH.

  4. PancakeSwap reduced its CAKE token supply.

  5. A notable Bitcoin transaction.

  6. Approval of a BTC ETF.

  7. Acquisition of Solscan.

  8. The SEC Twitter hack.

Detailed info is below!

Launch of Polygon's zkEVM

Let's dive into the launch of the week:  Polygon's zkEVM. This event has been a major talking point in the DeFi community, and for good reason. Here's a quick recap of what happened and why it's a game-changer:

What is zkEVM? 

For starters, zkEVM is a zero-knowledge scaling solution, fully compatible with Ethereum. This technology is a breakthrough because it significantly reduces transaction costs and increases throughput, all while upholding Ethereum's renowned security standards.

The coolest part? 

It integrates seamlessly with existing Ethereum infrastructure, making life easier for developers and users.

  • zkEVM Launch: Last week, we witnessed the unveiling of the zkEVM. This layer 2 rollup can handle 2,000 transactions per second and batch loads of transactions onto Ethereum as one. Plus, it comes with an innovative feature - data availability volition - which lets users decide where their data lives.

Sandeep Nailwal's Perspective

Polygon's co-founder, Sandeep Nailwal, had some insightful comments. He called zk-rollups "the holy grail of Ethereum scaling." This is big because zkEVM enables complex business transactions off-chain with succinct verification on Ethereum. This could potentially make Optimistic Rollups a thing of the past and open up new possibilities in scalability and user experience.

What's Next? 

The launch of zkEVM into mainnet beta is just the beginning. Polygon plans further optimizations, bug bounties, and comprehensive audits in the coming months.

The Bigger Picture

This isn't just a technical upgrade. The launch of zkEVM marks a significant shift in the blockchain landscape, especially in decentralized finance. It's tackling the blockchain trilemma – balancing security, decentralization, and scalability.

2/ KIRA Network in Focus: A Deep Dive into Its DeFi Innovations

Last week's spotlight: KIRA Network's inventive approach in blockchain and DeFi has captured significant attention. Here's a concise overview:

Innovative Multi-Bonded Proof of Stake (MBPoS)

KIRA Network's standout feature is its Multi-Bonded Proof of Stake (MBPoS), which paves the way for cross-chain interactions by allowing users to stake various virtual assets. What sets it apart is its interoperability and liquid staking capabilities, supported by cross-chain systems like Polkadot and Cosmos. This allows for a more inclusive approach to staking different cryptocurrency assets.

Sharding Technology for Asset Management

Another key aspect of KIRA is its use of sharding technology, dividing the network to efficiently handle diverse asset classes including cryptocurrencies, NFTs, and fiat currencies. The network also places a strong emphasis on governance and upgradeability, focusing on long-term sustainability by considering economic factors like inflation and interest rates.

  • KEX Token: KIRA’s native token, KEX, plays a pivotal role in staking, valuation of currencies, and governance, allowing holders to influence key decisions.

  • Mainnet Launch and Roadmap: Looking forward, KIRA is nearing its mainnet launch, starting in Proof of Authority mode and including a governance module for new validators and managing on-chain upgrades.

3/ DeFi Strategies: swETH vs. rswETH

Last week's debate: The DeFi space buzzed with discussions comparing swETH and rswETH, each offering distinct advantages.

swETH: Liquid Staking in Ethereum

swETH, or Swell ETH, part of a liquid staking token system, has gained popularity by allowing Ethereum users to stake their assets while maintaining liquidity. This has been well-received in the DeFi community, with significant support and integration in various applications.

rswETH: Advancing Liquid Staking

Contrastingly, rswETH, or Restaked Swell ETH, pioneered by EigenLayer, takes liquid staking further. It aims to optimize restaking rewards while ensuring liquidity, even for restaked assets. This approach opens up new possibilities for using staked assets in DeFi applications without foregoing restaking rewards.

The debate underscores the evolving nature of DeFi staking strategies, demonstrating the sector's continuous innovation and offering users diverse ways to engage with the Ethereum ecosystem.

4/ PancakeSwap's Strategic Shift

Last week's update: PancakeSwap, a leading decentralized crypto exchange, proposed a major change to its tokenomics by reducing its CAKE token supply from 750 million to 450 million.

Vision of Pancake Swap

This strategic move is driven by the aim to transition towards a more sustainable, deflationary model for the token. Dubbed "ultrasound CAKE," this approach is designed to provide more certainty about the future supply of CAKE tokens. The proposal was overwhelmingly supported by the community, with over 97% backing the decision.

This reduction in supply signifies a key strategic shift for PancakeSwap, aligning with broader trends in the DeFi space focusing on sustainability and responding to market dynamics and community feedback.

This reduction caused a powerful boost of $CAKE. And you can see it below on the graph!

5/ Notable Bitcoin Transaction

Last week's curiosity: A mysterious transaction involving 26.9 BTC, valued at about $1.2 million, was sent to the Genesis wallet linked to Satoshi Nakamoto.

Theories of the community

Several theories are circulating about the intent behind this transaction. Some speculate it could be an attempt to prompt Nakamoto to reveal his identity, in line with recent U.S. regulations. Others consider it part of a larger, undisclosed strategy. The wallet's balance has now grown to almost 100 BTC, but the true motive behind this transfer remains a topic of intense speculation.

BTC had some significant spikes this week too!

6/ BTC ETF Approval 

Last week's approval: The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has approved the first spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs), a monumental decision that marks the start of a new era in cryptocurrency investing.

Reaction of Bitcoin

Despite this groundbreaking news, Bitcoin's price reaction has been relatively muted, showing only a slight increase and you can see it on the graph above. Meanwhile, Ether showed a stronger response with a 5% rise, as the market anticipates potential Ethereum ETFs. 

This approval is set to greatly increase accessibility to Bitcoin investment through traditional brokerage accounts, intensifying competition among ETF issuers for appealing fee structures and benefits.

7/ Solscan's Etherscan Integration

Last week's major development: The integration of Solscan with Etherscan represents a significant advancement in blockchain data accessibility and analysis.

Importance of this collaboration 

This strategic collaboration aims to enhance the capabilities of both platforms. Solscan, known for its detailed insights within the Solana ecosystem, will bring its expertise to the Etherscan platform, improving the overall user experience and utility.

The merger is seen as a positive step for both platforms, indicating a move towards more comprehensive and user-friendly blockchain exploration services.

8/ SEC Twitter Hack

Last week's security incident: The SEC's Twitter account was compromised, falsely indicating the approval of spot Bitcoin ETFs.

History of the hack 

This unauthorized tweet led to a temporary spike in Bitcoin's price, which was quickly corrected after the post was clarified and deleted. SEC Chair Gary Gensler confirmed the hack and the inaccuracy of the message. The incident exposed serious cybersecurity vulnerabilities and sparked concerns about market manipulation and the influence of regulatory communications on crypto prices.

The aftermath has seen calls for enhanced security measures and greater transparency in how regulatory decisions are communicated in the crypto space.

This was the Metaverse.SG team! Subscribe to our newsletter and see you next week!

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