ChainLink, the crypto space’s first decentralized oracle network, is set to solve a major standing problem in the community: converting off-chain, external data onto the blockchain (and vice versa) using smart contracts in an entirely decentralized and trustless way.
LINK, the erc-20 token used with this decentralized oracle network, is an attractive long-term hold because of the revolutionary and business-orientated smart contract possibilities ChainLink will make possible.
First off, what’s an oracle?
Oracle’s are blockchain middleware: they translate off-chain resources, like bank transactions or financial agreements, in such a way as to allow them to interact with blockchain smart contracts.
Don’t oracles already exist?
They do, but they’ve all been centralized until ChainLink. With centralized oracles, you’re entirely at the mercy of a third-party middleman. If this “middleman” goes rogue, or if malicious actors commandeer a centralized oracle, then transactions can be tampered with and diverted.
ChainLink, then, aims to make oracles completely decentralized and thus 100% tamper-proof.
Now, with a decentralized oracle network, users, investors, and companies alike can use oracles to allow off-chain data and APIs to be used on the blockchain in ways that previously weren’t possible.
The enterprise-grade use-cases of decentralized oracles are, indeed, limited only by our imaginations.
— Crypto Fish ? (@coinyeezy) October 11, 2017
Give me an example
So an international shipping company wants to upload supply-chain data and GPS tracking tickets onto Ethereum’s blockchain. Using ChainLink, the company would be able to easily automate this off-chain-to-blockchain process trustlessly.
Any major users right now?
ChainLink’s parent company has entered into a partnership with SWIFT, the titanic interbank messaging platform used by over 11,000 banks across the globe. SWIFT used ChainLink’s decentralized oracle system for the first time during a proof-of-concept trial this past summer.
If the partnership continues to blossom, SWIFT may conceivably move more and more of its incredible volume of transactions through ChainLink in the years ahead. And that’s just one company. More will come.
From an investment standpoint, LINK has a high circulating supply of coins in comparison to heavyweights like Bitcoin and Ethereum. Link’s current circulating supply of coins stands at 350,000,000, while its maximum supply is 1,000,000,000.
ChainLink could efficiently open the door for trillions of dollars in business spending to enter the crypto space over the next two decades. Right now, it’s 0.43 cents price tag is a bargain.
TLDR: ChainLink lets smart contracts interact with the external world in new, seemingly limitless ways. LINK needs to be on your radar as an attractive long-term hold.