Token 2049 is one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency conferences and took place from March 20th to 21st in Hong Kong. The conference was filled with presentations from people well-known in the crypto space, including luminaries such as Da Hongfei (the founder of NEO) and Charles Hoskinson (the founder of Cardano). The conference touched on a few key themes which are outlined below and reflected on the current state of the cryptocurrency universe from its leading proponents.
Several large Next-Gen Smart Contract Platform projects were presented as the ‘next-gen’ platform superior to Ethereum. The founder of Hashgraph, Mance Harmon, presented around Hedera, a new next-generation Blockchain platform. It promises throughput of over one hundred thousand transactions a second with a short consensus time of just three seconds.
Da Hongfei of Neo did a presentation where he emphasized his desire to be the number one choice for dApps and highlighted the scalability of the Neo platform.
Eric Lee of Icon emphasized Icon’s interoperability with other blockchain platforms and a roadmap promising the launch of an ICO platform in April.
Finally, CEO Jack Lu presented Wanchain as a platform superior to Ethereum that offers the ability do anonymous transactions and offers interoperability with other platforms, including through a partnership with Icon.
Regulation was another big topic.
Mike Kayamori of Quoine discussed how regulators in Japan have been less lenient with cryptocurrency exchanges and the crypto ecosystem since the Coincheck hack in January. He emphasized that cooperation with the regulator was critical until they become more comfortable with the safety of cryptocurrencies.
Wayne Trench of Octagon Strategy noted that one of things that he predicted happening in 2018 would be more regulatory certainty, and this should help legitimize the industry. Civic CEO Vinny Lingham noted that the industry needs to self-regulate in order to head-off adverse regulatory scrutiny.
How to invest in cryptocurrencies
Investment was discussed in several presentations. A new product called Caspian was announced and will be headed by the CEO of Tora (an asset management technology company), Robert Dykes. It aims to make crypto investing easier for asset managers via a suite of trading tools that plug into multiple exchanges.
Chris Burniske, the author of the book Cryptoassets presented on the two main valuation techniques in crypto: Relative and Intrinsic. Relative valuations are done by looking at the market capitalizations of coins and comparing them. Intrinsic valuations rely on usage and coin characteristics to value. Burniske cautioned that valuations in the crypto space are still largely experimental. It will take a few years of data to better refine valuation techniques
Attendees of the conference remained extremely bullish on the future of blockchain technologies and cryptocurrencies.