Axie’s Ronin Bridge to To Go Live After Hacking
After experiencing a massive loss due to hacking, the Ronin bridge will finally re-open. With all users’ funds returned, the scheduled re-opening will be on June 28. This was stated in a recent update on the community.
A hardfork will be required for the relaunching of the bridge and in line with this, all validators are required to update their software. As further stated in the update, validators were already informed of the steps needed for upgrading their validating nodes. Non-validators on the other hand were required to follow specific instructions as indicated in the update. This was also shared as a thread on the Ronin network’s official Twitter account.
• We plan on re-opening the Ronin Bridge on June 28th, with all user funds returned.
• Re-opening will require on a Ronin hard-fork which requires all validators to update their software.
• Validators have been informed regarding next steps to upgrade their validating node.
— Ronin (@Ronin_Network) June 23, 2022
The number of DAU of Axie Infinity has tremendously dropped following updates that failed to get support from the community and the recent hacking of the Ronin network. From a peak of 2.5 million DAUs in November 2021, it has now declined to less than one million. The re-opening of its network and the refund of all the funds of the affected users are expected to boost investors’ confidence in Axie Infinity if not restore its declining popularity among gamers.
Sky Mavis, the developer of the blockchain-based NFT game has passed the Certik audit with only minor suggestions as stated in the announcement. The gaming has also received a total of $150 million in financial backing from Binance, Animoca Brands, Dialectic, Paradigm, Accel, and VC firm a16z. Binance was also able to recover $5.8 million worth of cryptocurrencies from the funds stolen from the Ronin network.
Cristiano Ronaldo Collabs with Binance in Launching His Own NFT
Soccer superstar Cristiano Ronaldo now joins the league of celebrities and professional athletes who have jumped into the NFT bandwagon. Ronaldo has recently entered a multi-year joint marketing agreement with Binance, one of the top blockchain companies today. In his statement, Ronaldo commented on the recent partnership.
“Together we’ll give you the opportunity to own an iconic piece of sports history.”
Binance has also commented on the news of the collaboration with the famous soccer player for the release of his own NFT.
“Through this partnership, Binance will launch a global promotion aiming to give Cristiano Ronaldo’s fans an introduction to Web3 with a compelling entry point into the world of NFTs.”
Under the partnership, Ronaldo will be releasing a series of NFT collections which will be sold in the Binance marketplace. Binance has this to say on the matter.
“Over the course of the agreement, Binance and Cristiano Ronaldo will create a series of NFT collections for sale exclusively on the Binance NFT platform. The first NFT collection will be released later this year and feature designs created in collaboration with Ronaldo.”
Partnerships with famous brands and personalities can be instrumental in saving the industry amid the crypto winter. The adoption of NFTs in the mainstream through these initiatives can help sustain the market with prices of cryptocurrencies plummeting to more than 80% of their previous prices. Even play-to-earn gaming platforms like Axie Infinity have already lost their grip on users, NFT collectibles featuring famous athletes might do the trick. But the initiative of releasing his own NFT collection is not all about making money instead it concerns his relationship with his fans according to the soccer superstar who played with the Manchester United team in the English Premier League in the previous FIFA 22.
“My relationship with the fans is very important to me, so the idea of bringing unprecedented experiences and access through this NFT platform is something that I wanted to be a part of.”
Solana Labs to Release Mobile App and Android Smartphone
Solana Labs, the technology company working to help advance the Solana ecosystem has announced the release of the Solana Mobile Stack software ecosystem and its own Android smartphone, Saga.
Solana Mobile Stack is an open-source software toolkit for Android enabling native Android web3 apps on Solana with the Seed Vault secure custody protocol that enables instant signing of transactions while ensuring users’ safety by keeping private keys partitioned from wallets, apps, and the Android operating system according to a press release. But what was the motivation of Solana Labs in launching these products? Anatoly Yakovenko, co-founder of Solana stated.
“Developers have been blocked for too long from creating truly decentralized mobile apps because the existing gatekeeper model just doesn’t work anymore.”
He further added:
“We live our lives on our mobile devices – except for web3 because there hasn’t been a mobile-centric approach to private key management. The Solana Mobile Stack shows a new path forward on Solana that is open source, secure, optimized for web3, and easy to use.”
The initial features of the Solana Mobile Stack SDK are the following.
- Mobile wallet adapter
- Seed vault
- Solana Pay (for Android)
Also, it will release Solana dApp Store which will provide mobile users access to web2 and web3 apps.
Saga, the flagship Android smartphone of Solana Labs is now available for pre-order with expected delivery in early 2023. But why did they choose the name Saga? Raj Gokal, co-founder of Solana stated:
“We chose the Saga name because the story of crypto is still being written. This is the next chapter of this narrative and we believe opening up crypto to mobile will lead to greater adoption, better understanding, and more opportunities.”
The Saga Android smartphone has a 6.67″ OLED display, 12 GB RAM, 512 GB storage, and the latest flagship Snapdragon® 8+ Gen 1 Mobile Platform. All consumers who would make a pre-order of the mobile phone are required to make a deposit of $100 but is subject to a refund. It will be sold for $1,000 with Solana developers as priority customers. Early birds will be given a chance to receive a limited NFT edition Saga Pass which will serve as the “first ticket to influencing the direction of the SMS platform” as stated in the press release. Gokal further stated:
“Developers can now bring the power of Solana to the computers in our pockets, not just our backpacks. Solana can revolutionize so much of what we do everyday, but we need to open the possibilities for decentralized apps on our mobile devices in order for this potential to be realized.”
But the release of Solana’s smartphone came under the scrutiny of the network’s critics. Some have pointed out that providing solutions to the outages of the network should be the team’s priority. It can be recalled that SOL (Solana), the network’s native token plummeted after its fifth interruption for the year. Twitter user @metamaxie has expressed his sentiment on Solana’s recent move in his tweet.
Solana should be focusing on becoming a stable reliable blockchain as top priority, why are they trying to be a phone manufacturer?
— metamaxie (@metamaxie) June 23, 2022
Solana has also taken a beating from Cardano founder Charles Hoskinson in his recent tweet.
And all you need to do is find seven of your friends over discord to reboot it… https://t.co/580TodWOAA
— Charles Hoskinson (@IOHK_Charles) June 23, 2022
It remains to be seen though if this is true or not until consumers get their hands on Solana’s flagship smartphones which will be expected in early 2023. Let’s wait for the early users’ comments until then.
Bitpanda Joins Other Companies in Reducing Workforce
Bitpanda, a Peter Thiel-backed trading platform based in Vienna joins other crypto companies like Coinbase, Crypto.com, Bitso, and Buenbit in reducing their workforce to prepare for the crypto winter. The announcement was made through a blog post on the platform’s website.
“We unfortunately needed to announce that we’re letting part of the team go during a call earlier today. We made this incredibly difficult decision to ensure that we stay true to Bitpanda’s mission and keep building the leading investment platform in Europe and beyond.”
The trading platform stated that it will reduce its manpower from 1,000 employees to 730.
In recent reports, Coinbase has laid off 18% or more than 1,000 of its workforce for the same reason. It was an unexpected move following the crypto exchange’s hiring spree.
BlockFi, another Peter Thiel-backed crypto lending start-up has also reduced its staff by 20% according to a report by CNBC. The move was made as BTC (bitcoin) went into a freefall in the past weeks. This makes Bitpanda, the second Peter Thiel-backed investment to reduce its manpower. The company has stated that the reason behind its decision was to ensure sustainability in a market troubled by shifting market sentiment, geopolitical tensions, soaring inflation, and concerns of an imminent recession.