TRON is an open-source blockchain platform that went live in June of 2018. Prior to the mainnet launch, the platform’s native asset TRX existed as an ERC-20 token on the Ethereum (ETH) blockchain. The TRON blockchain is designed to host smart contracts and decentralized applications (dApps). Similar to the concept popularized by Ethereum, TRON can also be used to issue custom blockchain-based tokens, which must adhere to the project’s own technical standards, such as TRC-10 and TRC-20.
Here’s a quick overview of key facts about TRON and its core blockchain features:
- TRON is a blockchain platform that uses a delegated proof-of-stake (DPoS) mechanism to reach a consensus about the state of its ledger
- The TRON ecosystem consists of a native NFT marketplace, interoperable BitTorrent Chain, sidechains, and a decentralized stablecoin USDD (USDD)
- The TRON network shares a lot of similarities with Ethereum, both due to its token standards and smart contract functionality
- Chinese cryptocurrency billionaire Justin Sun founded the TRON foundation in 2017 to pursue a “truly decentralized Internet”
- The native digital currency of the TRON ecosystem, the TRX token, was initially sold in an ICO in 2017 at a price of roughly $0.0019 per coin
What is TRON and how does it work?
The TRON platform aims to provide the scalability required to support popular dApps by employing a delegated proof-of-stake (DPoS) architecture. This design allows the TRON network to perform fast transactions with minimal fees. This has allowed the platform to become one of the most active in the industry in terms of transaction volume – TRON-native Tether (USDT), for instance, regularly tops the lists of most transacted cryptocurrencies.
TRX holders use their tokens to vote for Super Representatives (SRs), which maintain the TRON blockchain. At any given time, the 27 SR candidates with the most votes are active and take part in the TRON blockchain’s consensus process.
Some of TRON’s biggest competitors when it comes to popular blockchain platforms for smart contracts and dApps are Solana and Ethereum. Projects such as BitTorrent (BTT) and WINkLInk (WIN) have used the TRON platform to create their own tokens and raised funding through token sales.
TRON employs a 3-layer blockchain design, with a dedicated storage, core, and application layer. TRX, which stands for TRONIX, is issued by TRON DAO, a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) governing the TRON ecosystem. TRX is used as a primary medium of exchange and as the main asset covering transaction fees on the network.
Creation of TRON
The TRON project was founded by Chinese entrepreneur Justin Sun, and its development is headed by the TRON Foundation, which was established in 2017. The TRX token started trading on cryptocurrency exchanges in September of 2017, after the successful completion of the project’s initial coin offering (ICO) campaign in August 2017. In total, 15,200 BTC (worth approx $70 million at the time) were raised in the month-long public sale of 40 billion TRX.
Sun acquired San Francisco-based tech company BitTorrent Inc. in 2018. By leveraging the sizable existing user base of BitTorrent’s products, the TRON team aims to boost the adoption of the TRON blockchain. BitTorrent launched BitTorrent Token (BTT), its own token on the TRON blockchain, in 2019.
It is worth noting that Sun has drawn substantial amounts of criticism over the years, both for his often brash and outspoken behavior and for allegedly copying features from competing blockchain platforms (such as decentralized stablecoin, token standards, etc.).
According to TRON’s 10-year roadmap, the final stage of the TRON development outlined in the white paper is slated to roll out in 2027. In the future, the TRON team intends to pursue safer and faster TROM Virtual Machine (TVM) operations for enhanced smart contract functionality, better cross-chain support, and deeper decentralized finance (DeFi) integrations, with an end goal of building an all-encompassing Web3 hub.