After the Network’s Super Representatives voted in favor of launch, the Tron Virtual Machine went live today at 8 pm according to Singapore time. The upgrade, dubbed as Odyssey 3.1, enables Tron to host Ethereum-like smart contracts on the high-throughput, proof-of-stake blockchain.
Tron’s supporters and investors believe that the Virtual Machine will offer a major upgrade in throughput for decentralized applications. In a tweet celebrating the launch, Tron founder Justin Sun said: “TRON will be 200x faster vs. ETH, 100x cheaper vs. EOS.”
If things continue smoothly, the launch will represent a formidable coup for the Chinese-led cryptocurrency project, which until a few months ago was dismissed as a scam and a money- grab. Evidence of plagiarized or borrowed code prompted wide speculation that Tron’s virtual machine was “Frankenstein code” in danger of bursting at the seams.
However, Justin Sun has managed a summer makeover for the Tron project, with new acquisitions that include one of the web’s most-used decentralized platforms. Under the codename Project Atlas, Tron acquired BitTorrent with the intention of integrating the file- sharing platform with the Tron blockchain.
Although Tronix froze during the bear market as badly as any other crypto project, Sun has continued to make strong predictions. In a recent interview, he speculated that TRX would break into the top ten cryptocurrencies within half a year.
This isn’t the first time Sun has talked a big game, and the Tron founder has a well-earned reputation for over-promising. Nevertheless, the network claims a number of technical advantages over proof-of-work blockchains.
There is no mining in Tron’s consensus protocol, unlike proof-of-work blockchains like Ethereum. Instead, transactions are processed by a number of “Super Representatives,” which are elected by on-chain voting.
Tron’s blockchain is capable of handling thousands of transactions per second, by restricting block production to a restricted number of high-powered nodes, at least on paper. Sun told Investopedia that the Tron Virtual Machine is fully compatible with Ethereum’s Virtual Machine. Moreover, it costs a fraction of one TRX to support smart contracts on the TVM and to create TRON accounts.
This is sharply distinct from Ethereum and EOS, whose networks have been bottlenecked by CryptoKitties and RAM shortages. By Comparing with Tron, he commented that creating and supporting contracts o Ethereum and EOS can cost a user more than $10.
It remains to be verified if those promises will pay off for dApp developers. But investors have already begun to see the rewards. Tronix’s market cap climbed around 17% in the lead up to the Virtual Machine’s activation, crawling past IOTA to become the eleventh largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.