Bitcoin does not allow ICOs. Or does it?
The Bitcoin blockchain was not designed to allow ICOs, so much so that one of the reasons for the great success of Ethereum is precisely because, unlike Bitcoin, it provides this possibility thanks to smart contracts.
Moreover, Bitcoin is from 2009, while Ethereum from 2015, but it should be remembered that the original concept of ICO was proposed for the first time already in 2013 by JR Willett, who raised half a million dollars for the token “Mastercoin”, later renamed Omni.
The so-called “second layer” solutions, like the Lightning Network, allow adding features based on the Bitcoin blockchain, even when these were not originally planned. It should be remembered that it is very difficult to change the basic settings of the Bitcoin protocol, so it is much more accessible to develop new features on additional layers.
One of these second layers is RGB, which is directly challenging Ethereum and the ERC20 standard, as the most solid platform on which to build Bitcoin-based smart contracts.
But these are already much more than just talks about hypothetical future developments: by the end of the year, in fact, the first ICO on the Bitcoin blockchain will already be launched.
This will be made possible by a sidechain created by RSK, which will allow the Korean startup Temco, responsible for supply chain management, to launch a public token sale at the end of November with the aim of raising $19 million.
RSK has been working on its sidechain for Bitcoin smart contracts since early 2016. Smart contracts are written in the same language used by Ethereum, Solidity, and the network is powered by a bitcoin-linked cryptocurrency called “smart bitcoin” or SBTC.
For now all this is still only in beta version, but some projects are already experimenting with the RSK sidechain.
According to many, Bitcoin will have the same features as Ethereum in the future, so it will be possible to launch ICOs like Temco’s, by creating tokens based on Bitcoin’s blockchain.
And these Bitcoin-based ICOs will be virtually identical to those based on the Ethereum network.
The advantage of using Bitcoin is the scalability, speed and cost effectiveness of the Lighting Network, which makes massive operations much faster and much less expensive. In addition, with the activation of LN, the performance of the Bitcoin network will be remarkable, ensuring maximum security.
According to the authors of the RSK sidechain, those who will want to launch an ICO or a token will most likely choose to do so using the BTC-based sidechain, because Bitcoin’s ICOs will outperform the Ethereum ones.