Strangely, Telegram’s efforts to build a cryptocurrency linked to the popular social media network continue without Telegram itself.
To explain, Telegram CEO Pavel Durov shut down its cryptocurrency experiment Telegram Open Network (TON) in 2020 after a conflict with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Notably, the SEC ordered Telegram to stop selling the Gram cryptocurrency in October 2019.
Three years later, efforts to create TON, or Toncoin (TON), continue. Another organization they call The Open Network is building a decentralized layer-one blockchain to connect Telegram users to the blockchain. Interestingly, Toncoin was CoinMarketCap’s 24th most trending cryptocurrency on 27 February 2023.
Turing Complete Smart Contracts on TON
They describe The Open Network as a flexible multi-blockchain platform that will process millions of transactions per second (TPS) with Turing-Complete Smart Contracts.
To explain, Turing Complete describes an application that can solve any computational problem if you give it the right instructions, enough time, processing power, and memory. Ethereum (ETH) and Ethereum smart contracts are Turing Complete.
Theoretically, a Turing Complete Smart Contract can implement any future agreement. Thus, they claim The Open Network will offer the same capabilities as the Ethereum blockchain.
Therefore, The Open Network will connect Smart Contracts to Telegram. This is important because most smart contracts control most blockchain transactions. For example, smart contracts make fiat currency payments through stablecoins such as Tether (USDT).
Consequently, The Open Network serves as a peer-to-peer (P2P) network that connects Telegram and the TON blockchain.
What is The Open Network (TON)?
The Open Network is a Layer-One blockchain. To explain, a Layer One Blockchain such as Ethereum or Ton contains a digital computer powerful enough to make the network Turing Complete.
They call the digital computers that operate blockchains virtual machines. Ton’s Virtual Machine is the Actor Model which operates Ton’s Smart Contracts. They claim the Actor Model allows TON to scale up to an enormous size and process unlimited numbers of transactions.
Consequently, other blockchains can operate on the Layer One Blockchain. Therefore, the Ton can function as a collection of blockchains with Layer Two blockchains functioning on top of it.
The TON Blockchain
Being Turing complete allows TON to process complex transactions and finalize transactions in under six seconds, developers claim. They also claim users can connect to a block within five seconds. This allows Ton to process complex transactions and enable near instant cross chard communications.
They claim 2.230 million TON accounts had processed 114.069 million transactions on 28 February 2023. There were 285 Ton validators on 28 February 2023.
TON is a proof-of-stake blockchain. That means TON tokenholders can stake coins and check new blocks of transactions.
The Open Network (TON)
The Open Network (TON) mainnet went live in 2022. TON DeFi, Ton Nominators and a Developers platform began in the first quarter of 2022.
TON payments went live in the second quarter of 2022. TON Proxy appeared in the third quarter of 2022 and Ton Storage in the fourth quarter of 2022.
They hope to launch TON Connect, Ton Bridge, Tokenomics and Voting, Liquidity Staking, and a TON Decentralized Autonomous Organization in the third quarter of 2023. At that time, Ton will start working with Etherereum (ETH), Binance (BNB), Bitcoin (BTC), and other cryptocurrencies. Collators and validators could begin operation in the fourth quarter of 2023.
What Value could the TON Network Obtain?
Hence, they are still building the TON Network, which makes it difficult to determine its value. However, TON could obtain immense value if it works as advertised and works with Telegram.
Telegram is one of the fastest growing social media networks. Statista estimates the number of monthly active Telegram users grew from 500 million in April 2022 to 700 million million November 2022. If Statisa is correct, Telegram added 200 million users in six months.
Telegram is most popular in India where 70.42 million people downloaded it between January and August 2022, Statista estimates. Telegram is also popular in Russia and the United States. 24.15 million Russians and 20.03 million Americans downloaded it between January and August 2022.
Thus Ton is working with one of the world’s most popular and widely used social messaging apps. If they can get just 5% or 10% of Telegram users to use Ton, it could become one of the world’s popular cryptos and DeFi apps.
What Value Does the Open Network Offer?
Although its blockchain is under construction. Mr. Market thinks Toncoin (TON) offers some value.
For instance, CoinMarketCap ranked TON 23rd and gave it a $2.55 CoinPrice on 28 February 2023. CoinMarketCap also gave TON a $3.111 billion Market Capitalization, a $12.731 billion Fully Diluted Market Cap, a $55.486 million 24-Hour Market Volume, a $54.748 million Centralized Exchange Volume, and a $532,624 Decentralized Exchange Volume on 27 February 2023.
They based those numbers on a Circulating Supply of 1.221 billion TON, a five TON Maximum Supply, and a Total Supply of 5.048 billion TON. Hence, Mr. Market has faith in TON before is complete.
My advice to speculators is to avoid TON until they complete the blockchain. Until then, TON is just a business plan that speculators need to avoid because it has no moneymaking capacity. Even though they associate it with a fast growing social network.