Secure, scalable and instant transactions—are the 3Ms (mantras) of Matic, a blockchain scalability platform based in India, which aspires to see a world where blockchain gains mainstream adoption, and fulfills its true promise.
In an exclusive interview with Cult.Today, Chandresh Aharwar, the Vice President—Operations & Marketing, speaks about the company’s journey, its focus areas and how crucial is the Indian government’s support for fuelling the growth of cryptocurrency in the country.
Tell us about the journey of Matic. How did it come about?
The Matic team has been active in the blockchain space long before our initial exchange offering (IEO) on Binance in April 2019—we’ve actually been making valuable contributions to the Ethereum ecosystem alongside Ethereum’s best developers for a long time. This includes working on implementations of Plasma MVP, the WalletConnect protocol (which allows users to access Dapps in a secure and user friendly way), and the widely-used Dagger event notification engine.
We could see the inherent challenges of scaling in the current blockchain environment and envisioned a method of Layer 2 scaling that could effectively overcome blockchain’s scalability limitations and provide the infrastructure to facilitate widespread mainstream adoption of decentralized applications. That vision was Matic Network, and we’ve been on our journey to scale the Ethereum ecosystem and beyond ever since.
You said earlier that the current decentralized ecosystem lacks usability and convenience. How much has Matic helped in simplifying the usability of DApps?
In the DApp space where almost every interaction is a transaction on the blockchain, the performance of the underlying blockchain is incredibly important for truly usable DApps. For example, with a DApp on Ethereum, an action (transaction) could take anywhere from 15 seconds to minutes to complete. This is not conducive to a seamless gameplay experience.
As Matic Network provides block times of ~1 second and a transaction-per-second rate of up to 65,000, actions within DApps on Matic are quick and seamless. This opens the door for complex blockchain integrations within DApps, and more importantly DApps which are able to handle large volumes of users whilst offering performance akin to traditional applications.
We also offer developers on Matic a range of developer tools which inherently make the usability of their DApps much simpler. One example is Biconomy, which enables meta transactions within DApps, meaning there is no need for users to hold crypto to pay transaction fees.
“New opportunities are always exciting, but the real value of DeFi is providing an alternative to traditional financial services which still remain inaccessible to so many people globally”
Could you take us through some steps a client needs to follow to work with Matic in order to launch a DApp. How does one go about it?
Deploying DApps on Matic is simple, an Ethereum DApp for example can migrate to Matic in as little as 30 minutes. We also have a range of resources available for developers who would like to build their DApp from scratch on Matic Network.
Developers using Matic are also provided with access to a wide range of developer tooling such as meta transaction services, oracles and wallet tools.
What kind of areas are you mainly focused on?
In terms of our DApp type focus, our infrastructure is capable of housing a limitless array of DApp types, and we are keenly focused on gaming and DeFi, as well as welcoming of all DApps which stand to further the decentralized movement.
There are more than 50 plus DApps building on Matic Network, as in currently either deployed on testnet or our Beta mainnet and waiting to move to our mainnet now that the mainnet is live.
DApps on Matic encompass a variety of niches ranging from gaming, social platforms, business solutions to DeFi, with a few notable projects including VR metaverse games Decentraland, Somnium Space and The Sandbox, whitelabel betting platform BetProtocol, and decentralized social media platform Sapien.
More DApps are onboarding every week.
What does the costing look like if someone were to take Matic’s help to launch a DApp?
We charge absolutely nothing for developers to deploy their DApps on Matic Network. Our tech team offers active assistance with migration, whether that DApp is currently based on Ethereum or any other blockchain.
We actually have a grants program for particularly promising DApps and a Developer Support Program to assist blockchain developers with technical, funding and talent sourcing related support.
Vitalik in his tweet on 2 July called DeFi exciting but reiterated that it can never be more attractive than traditional finance when it comes to returns. He focused on the need to balance meaning with excitement. He also said the flashy stuff is short-term. Your comments.
I think Vitalik’s comment was that DeFi won’t provide interest rates greater than 1% more than the traditional finance space, talking about the long-term. At the moment while the space is still building, there are many opportunities for significant financial gain.
But long-term in the years to come, once DeFi has reached mainstream adoption and the space has matured, those outsized returns will level out.
“The real value of DeFi is providing an alternative to traditional financial services which still remain inaccessible to so many people globally”
I completely agree with Vitalik’s general sentiment also regarding the importance of focusing building for the long-term rather than focusing on short-term gain. New opportunities are always exciting, but the real value of DeFi is providing an alternative to traditional financial services which still remain inaccessible to so many people globally.
There are aspects to DeFi which are way more important than short-term exciting opportunities.
A large part of the crypto community in India has focused its energy on lobbying the government. How important is government support in the growth of crypto in India?
Government support is important for the mainstream adoption of blockchain and crypto for sure, but it isn’t critical. You can’t stop people from buying and trading cryptocurrency, and there will always be blockchain innovators in India.
That said, the Indian government appears to be progressive when it comes to the new technology. There has been some confusion over whether India will ban cryptocurrency following recent reports of a note being circulated by the government. However, the source of this information is not reliable and there is no indication of any disruption to the recent official ruling by the Supreme Court of India overturning the cryptocurrency ban.
Indian government support can be seen in initiatives to foster the growth of the Indian blockchain ecosystem such as the establishment of the Telangana Blockchain District, and the T-Block accelerator program, organized by Tech Mahindra and the Telangana government. The aim of T-Block is to provide promising Indian blockchain startups with the support and tools required to flourish and thrive. Matic Network is a T-Block official platform partner.