Hard forks can produce some interesting offspring. Bitcoin Cash recently took the crypto world by storm and produced more than a billion dollars in value overnight. Ethereum Classic, however, has been a mixed bag of positive and negative attention (or lack thereof).
It has been resting quietly for some, but with changes like Exodus Wallet recently including ETC in its version 1.36.1, the time for ETC to begin its rise may be upon us soon.
What is Ethereum Classic?
For those who don’t know, Ethereum Classic is the result of an Ethereum hard fork that occurred due to $60 million dollars worth of Ether that was stolen in a successful hack back in 2016.
The Ethereum Foundation was faced with a choice: do nothing and accept what happened, or hard fork to undo the damage that was done. Needless to say, the fork occurred, the hack was undone, and the result was two separate blockchains. Ethereum as we know it today and Ethereum Classic were the results.
Since its inception, the value of Ethereum Classic, or ETC, has fluctuated from between $10 to a high of $30 on average. At press time, it’s valued at around $12 each.
It seems in the last few months that not a day goes by without a new project announcing it’s use of Ethereum to power its platform.
Some of these projects that use Ethereum include Golem, Streamr, Render Token, OmiseGo, and many others. All of this positive attention and the consequent need for Ether keeps the price of ETH high. On the other hand, ETC seems to have been left behind.
A Change in Sentiment for Ethereum Classic
Grayscale, an investment company which says it is a sponsor of the “Ethereum Classic Investment Trust,” released a 22-page paper back in August of this year entitled “Into the Ether with Ethereum Classic.” The paper outlines the potential use cases for ETC and why investors should be paying attention to it.
The author of the paper, Matthew Beck, writes “…we believe Ethereum Classic may one day be the substrate for a global, secure, and decentralized Internet of Things (IoT).”
The term Internet of Things appears multiple times in the paper and seems to be one of the central points behind Beck’s argument for ETC. In this aspect, Beck believes based on his own research and calculations, that ETC will be ideally suited for handling machine to machine autonomous data transactions. He states that if ETC were able to capture just 10% of the estimated data traffic produced by IoT devices estimated to exist by 2025, the value of one ETC would be close to $150 each.
In regards to the investment opportunity that ETC represents, Beck writes “First, ETC possesses store-of-value properties similar to precious metals and bitcoin, giving it credence as an inflation hedge over long-term investment horizons. Second, as the digital token that runs Ethereum Classic smart contracts, ETC can become the scarce commodity that powers a universally-scalable Internet of Things.”
The paper is quite compelling, but it should be noted that the creators behind the paper stand to gain significantly from an increase in value or usage of ETC.
Ethereum Classic Summit in Hong Kong
Next month, a group of developers and supporters of Ethereum Classic will be meeting for a summit in Hong Kong to discuss the future of the platform.
At the official website for the conference, the creators of the endeavor write: “Ethereum Classic remains a nascent but exciting technology that can enhance the ways that information and value are shared in a digital economy. Featuring a flexible and intuitive smart contract programming platform that is powered by ETC, Ethereum Classic can propel the development of a global, secure, and decentralized Internet of Things.”
As soon as I saw the phrase Internet of Things, I immediately thought of Beck’s paper for Grayscale. Looking further into who is behind this summit, I quickly found Beck’s name, as well as another person for Grayscale, Michael Sonnenshein, who is listed as a director of business development. Aside from Grayscale, members of the ETCDEV team, the Digital Currency Team, and IOHK.
Attendees aside, the purpose of the conference seems to be to further develop and improve the reach and usage of Ethereum Classic. It also seems that the people who are standing behind, but not necessarily controlling ETC, are pursuing the IoT branding – which in my opinion is a fair idea.
If ETC is to succeed, it’s important that it has its own purpose and identity. Even if it possesses all of the power and technology that normal Ethereum does, it will not thrive if it doesn’t stand for something that is both unique and important. No one can say for certain what the future holds for ETC, but with enough support and effort, ETC may find it’s true place in the crypto world.