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What is ChainLink (LINK)?

ChainLink is a decentralized oracle network, allowing smart contracts secure access to external data, off-chain payments, and other API capabilities. ChainLink operators, or basically anyone with a data feed, a useful off-chain service such as local payments, or any other API, can provide them directly to smart contracts in exchange for LINK tokens.

Much like as its name says, ChainLink aims to be the “link” between the blockchain technology and today’s business industry. This link is known in the community as the “oracle”.

The modern enterprises face a difficult issue when trying to incorporate blockchain into their operations and become compatible with the budding new technology. Usually, to become blockchain-compatible, they have to completely retool themselves and become an entirely blockchain-based operation, which is not something all businesses want.

However, this problem could be resolved with the help of an oracle for smart contracts, which would make the entire process of reimagining the business unnecessary. ChainLink provides the oracle for smart contracts, creating a bridge between blockchain and the modern business world.

See more in their whitepaper: https://link.smartcontract.com/whitepaper

Partnerships and Beta Products Since ICO End

Chainlink has made a few important partnerships, including:

Let’s not forget The Accord Project, OpenLaw, ZeppelinOS, and Web3 Foundation. Moreover, they have plenty of blockchain partnerships, such as with Factom, Brave New Coin, Market Protocol, ClinTex, and GameDex, with other speculated ones on the way such as Request Network, Ambrosus, and Universa.

They also have a working product: https://docs.chain.link/docs/assumptions

ICO Results, Info, News

The ICO took place on September 19, 2017, raising a total of $32,000,000 USD (hard cap). The blockchain is Ethereum based, and the tokens’ standard is ERC20, with the additional ERC223 “transfer and call” functionality of transfer, allowing tokens to be received and processed by contracts within a single transaction.

During the ICO, the tokens were sold at the price of $0.091 USD, and at the moment they are valued at $0.45038 USD.

They are currently traded on exchanges like:

  • Etherdelta;
  • Binance;

The market cap at this moment (October 31, 2018) is around $157.63 M USD, with an all-time high reached in January 2018 with the price of $1.44 USD per token.

Community around it

  • Telegram: 2,370 members;
  • Twitter: 6,696 followers;
  • Facebook: 1.2K group members.

The team is relatively active on their Medium blog, so here are a couple of highlights:

Competition

Being a decentralized oracle network and a first-mover in the industry, ChainLink doesn’t have many competitors. Two of the rare ones are Oraclize and Zap.

Oraclize is a similar project that has been around for some time. However, their goal is to be the data provider themselves, whereas ChainLink provides a decentralized network where anyone can be a provider of data feed/API. Oraclize is also a single entity, which might leave it vulnerable to tampering and attacks. Chainlink network exists at every single node that provides data.

Zap works almost the same way as Oraclize but all users can become off-chain data providers, just like ChainLink. Zap is an oracle marketplace, providing a link between smart-contracts and off-chain data. Oracles and subscribers are the main participants.

Team

ChainLink was founded by Sergey Nazarov (CEO), a serial entrepreneur and a veteran in the blockchain space; and Steve Ellis (CTO), also a serial entrepreneur and Nazarov’s colleague at Secure Asset Exchange. They are accompanied by a strong advisory board, including individuals such as Hudson Jameson, one of the key members of the Ethereum Foundation and Evan Cheng, Director of Engineering at Facebook.

Check out the rest of the team and advisory board at: https://www.smartcontract.com/link#team

Verdict

ChainLink wants to be the bridge between the blockchain world and current business world known as an oracle. Usually, any business that wants to be compatible with blockchain needs to completely reimagine and turn itself into a blockchain-based operation, so involving an oracle for smart contracts makes that unnecessary. The project has already caught the attention of some media and the experienced team members have been working diligently on developing the technology and making important partnerships.

That said, it seems that they have forgotten about the wider audience, which is why they have not reached the full potential they probably deserve. If they invested more effort into marketing and communicating with their followers on social media, the opportunities would be countless.

Contacts

By Sead Fadilpasic

 

Rating

8.4

PLAN

10.0/10

TEAM

9.0/10

MARKETING

5.0/10

MARKET GROWTH

10.0/10

COMPETITORS

8.0/10

Pros

  • Media attention (Coindesk, AmericanBanker, Finextra)
  • Experienced team
  • Detailed whitepaper
  • Meaningful partnerships
  • Many real-world use cases

Cons

  • Not much activity on social media
  • No roadmap