Qtum is a cryptocurrency fueling the Qtum blockchain which was developed on the Ethereum platform. It’s a hybrid of two cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin and Ethereum, as it merges the popular design aspects of them both.
Qtum is technically a fork of Bitcoin Core version 0.13 with the integrated element of the Ethereum virtual machine which executes the smart contracts on the platform. The project was launched because the public blockchain developers were so dissatisfied with existing choices that they started seeking an alternative. It combines the best of Bitcoin and Ethereum blockchain technologies and eliminates their flaws. Qtum borrowed security from Bitcoin and smart contract functionality from Ethereum.
Qtum is financed by the company Quantum Foundation headquartered in Singapore. The project was launched in March 2017.
The Qtum platform
Qtum is an open-sourced decentralized smart contract platform. The main goal of Qtum is to provide convenient and simple tools for companies to create decentralized applications while ensuring high network security and reliability.
The first focus target of the project are applications for finance, the Internet of Things, and supply chains.
The Qtum technology
The Qtum cryptocurrency is based on the BTC transaction model, but the consensus represents an upgraded version of Ethereum’s technology.
The developers improved the consensus of PoS and adopted MPoS (Mutualized Proof Of Stake) to prevent the harm that might be inflicted by malicious nodes. The Bitcoin core code supports the UTXO (Unspent Transaction Output) model with Account Abstraction Layer (AAL) providing integration of Ethereum virtual machines and supporting smart contracts. Despite the apparent simplicity of operations for sending QTUM to other contracts, it’s worth noting the complexity of the AAL that allows adding new virtual machines, for instance, x86 VM.
Qtum doesn’t use masternodes and every Qtum core wallet is a decentralized full node. There are more than 3000 nodes globally at the time of writing located in over 60 countries, with about 30% of them in South Korea and the USA.
The Qtum cryptocurrency is mainly used in Asian markets, therefore it is often exchanged to such fiat currencies as the yuan and the South Korean won. BTC and ETH are the most frequent cryptocurrencies involved in exchanges.
The funding was raised in several rounds. The seed round took place on January 11, 2017 with 9 investors among Qtum blockchain angels. 1 million dollars was raised to prepare the infrastructure for sale of tokens in a public ICO, or public sale of tokens to investors.
ICO was launched on March 17, 2017, during the amount equal to 15,600,000 USD was raised in 117 hours. The project became record-breaking as by that time it was the fourth most-funded cryptocurrency crowdsale ever.
The Qtum token sale was launched during ICO on 6 cryptocurrency platforms with ETH and BTC accepted as the main means of payment. The project raised 11,156.766 BTC and 77,081.031 ETH in exchange for the 51 million Qtum tokens distributed to the public.
The grant round was arranged on December 19, 2018, during which 400,000 USD was raised. The project founders have awarded an R&D grant to the team of academics at Columbia University to fund the development of a new programming language named DeapSEA for Ethereum-style smart contracts and its further integration with ETH smart contracts.
The Qtum tokens
The Qtum tokens were distributed in the following way:
51% of QTUM was distributed via crowdsale with the funds used for financing marketing, development, and covering administration costs
29% of tokens were distributed to community initiatives (R&D, education, expansion of market)
20% of QTUM tokens were allocated to the founders, backers, and developers.
The cryptocurrency is available for exchange and sale/purchase on Hong Kong Bitfinex platform. The operations for the exotic QTUM/KRW pair are available on the South Korean platform Coinone. Among other big platforms supporting Qtum are Binance, CoinEgg and Cat.Ex.
The Qtum developers provide the official Qtum core wallet and support Qtum QRC20 tokens and smart contract transactions. There are also 3rd party QTUM wallets that may feature limited functionality. The users can resort to Atomic wallet, Jaxx Liberty wallet and Bitpie wallet to store their digital assets on them. Those who need hardware wallets, Ledger and Trezor can serve as an alternative.
The team wanted to bridge the gap between the communities of both cryptocurrencies. For this reason, it’s only natural that the Quantum team includes people who worked over the development of the Bitcoin and ETH platforms. They also worked with top companies such as Alibaba, NASDAQ, Baidu, and others.
For instance, Patrick Dai, the key person in the team, used to be working at Alibaba before. Now he is a co-founder of the company along with Jordan Earls. The project is supported by numerous significant figures in the sphere of blockchain venturing investments, for example, Roger Ver who helps many Bitcoin startups, Xu Star, OKCoin founder, and others. The executives of big Chinese companies also invest in this company.
In addition, Qtum partners with PwC Asia, which provides accounting services for the project.