Helium (HNT) Cryptocurrency Overview

You’ve probably heard about the internet of things by now. The concept is becoming increasingly popular, and we are promised that in the not too distant future, the Internet of Things will revolutionize the way we live, with businesses and consumers embracing smart technology en masse.

On the internet, devices communicate directly with one another. Smart gadgets purchase the necessary resources themselves, order goods for the host and make payment transactions. But the traditional financial system is not equipped to do that. A blockchain platform designed specifically for the concept is better suited to the task. There are dozens of projects claiming to be a payment network for the internet of things. One of them is called Helium cryptocurrency.

The goal of the project’s developers is to make internet connections much better and prepared to handle new technologies.

What is Helium (HNT)?

Helium (HNT) is a decentralised blockchain network powered by Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Unlike most of the same coins on the market, it provides real-world usage via dedicated LoRaWAN access points. It is a ‘multipoint networking’ protocol that uses Semtech’s LoRa modulation scheme. It also includes a cloud component to which multiple gateways are connected.

LoRaWAN is a combination of the two technologies:

LoRa, a way of manipulating radio waves to encode information;
WAN low-power broadband networks.
The Helium network is designed for battery-powered devices that transmit minimal amounts of data over long distances. These include smart collars for pets, environmental sensors, bicycle trackers, and other similar gadgets. The project website states that there are currently thousands of compatible LoRaWAN devices.

Helium’s network design concept is based on encouraging the creation of decentralised wireless networks. The developers position their project as a “People’s Network” that is formed and managed by ordinary citizens. To ensure security, the ecosystem is verified and protected by trusted nodes, also known as “Hotspots”. In doing so, users can mine a Helium token when the device’s network connects to the internet through the protected nodes.

A Helium hotspot is a device that provides network coverage within a certain radius. It is used to mine cryptocurrency. The Helium miner rewards participants for using HNT tokens. Once the access point is active, any sensor using the Helium LongFi wireless protocol can connect to the network.

Features of Helium (HNT)

The internal token of the Helium ecosystem has the trade ticker HNT. Its main purpose is to make transactions and payments to miners. Let’s summarize the main characteristics in the table.

Name of the cryptocurrency Helium
Trade ticker HNT
Year of issue 2018
Official developer website https://www.helium.com
Helium Network base blockchain
Current supply 103,101,461 HNT
Maximum supply 223,000,000 HNT
Capitalisation at current issue $4,097,452439
Helium Explorer https://explorer.helium.com
Project documentation https://docs.helium.com
Source https://github.com/helium
Blog https://blog.helium.com
Pages on social platforms https://discord.com/invite/helium

Helium blockchain uses a new consensus algorithm called Proof of Coverage. It makes sure that network access points are physically located where they claim to be and that they fairly represent the service.

In less than two years since the network launched, Helium’s blockchain has issued and processed tens of millions of calls. As each new call is issued and processed, Helium’s blockchain receives and records more information about the quality of the network.

The nodes serving the network have different purposes:

Rival node – monitors the operation of other nodes. Access points monitor the network approximately once every 240 blocks.
Transmitter or “Call Receiver” – is responsible for transmitting packets of information that can potentially be acknowledged by other nearby nodes.
Witness – located close to the “Transmitter”, reports the call packet once sent.
The consensus is based on a variant of the HoneyBadger BFT protocol, which was originally designed and developed as a result of research conducted by Andrew Miller and a team at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. All transactions are encrypted using a common public key, and can only be decrypted by the joint efforts of a select consensus group.

A new consensus group (CG) of 16 members is elected once per epoch. All active Helium hotspots in the HNT network are eligible to be elected to the CG. A hotspot is more likely to be elected if it does well in the PoC.

At each election 4 new CG members will be elected. The remaining 12 members are members of previous CG elections. Once elected, an AP can participate in 4 consecutive CGSs. Unsuccessful nodes are likely to be removed from the CG before the limit of 4 epochs is reached.

Once a new CG is elected, a Threshold Encryption Key (TPKE) is generated. TPKE allows any access point in the network to encrypt transactions using the master public key (PK), so that the CG must work together to decrypt it. TPKE is used to make the network resistant to censorship, as it becomes difficult for CG members to arbitrarily ignore or delay certain transactions.

History of the emergence and the Helium Team (HNT)

Amir Halem, Sean Fanning and Sean Cary founded Helium in 2013.

Amir Halem, has worked in the gaming industry and cyber sports.
Fanning is the co-creator of the music-sharing service Napster.
Cary was previously an employee of advertising optimisation firm Where.
The Helium Network team includes experts with extensive experience in radio communications, distributed systems and blockchain technology.

Helium (HNT) mining opportunity

It is possible to mine Helium Coin (HNT) by installing a special device in your flat window. The Hotspot, consumes only 5 watts and guarantees the stable operation of the Helium LongFi wireless network within a radius of several kilometres, and you are rewarded with HNT tokens.

The system distributes rewards to access points, at the end of each epoch. An epoch is 30 blocks, and the network allocates 60 seconds to create a block. The theoretical time for an epoch is 30 minutes. You can view the actual block production statistics in the browser.

Hotspots receive 65% of the rewards, with the remaining 35% distributed to Helium Inc and some other early investors. Hotspots can be rewarded for all of the following:

Submitting valid evidence of coverage problems (as a “challenger”)
Successfully participating in proof of coverage (as a “challenger”)
Witnessing a problem with proof of coverage
Transmission of device data over the network
Participation as a consensus group member
The distribution of 65% of the rewards for Hotspots is as follows:

Applicants: 0.95%. Hotspots are selected by the network to send calls, encrypted messages over the internet, target group of hotspots, to verify wireless network coverage.
Coverage Verification: 5.31%. APs earn HNT for participating in coverage validation and verification of their partner’s wireless coverage. The amount each access point receives depends on how often it directly participates in coverage validation activities.
Witnesses: 21.24%. Access points which monitor and report activity confirming coverage (beacons) to other access points receive a portion of the HNT depending on the activity.
Network data transmission: 32,5%. HNT is distributed to hotspots that transmit data from devices in the network. The remuneration is distributed proportionally according to the amount of data transmitted by the hotspot.
Consensus group: 6%. APs are randomly selected into the Consensus Group to perform tasks, including checking transactions and publishing new blocks on the blockchain.
Helium mining has little relevance in Russia so far, although if you live close to the European border, such as in Kaliningrad, the venture might be quite successful.

Helium Special Equipment (HNT)

If you decide to buy a Helium miner, go to https://www.helium.com/ru/mine. There are Hotspot models approved by the community and the production supervision committee. Opposite each name there is a button to go to the order page.

In addition to mining on dedicated equipment, Helium tokens can be earned by steaking. To become a validator, you need to have 10,000 HNT. The amount is quite large and a 10K HNT option is available for those who cannot afford such an investment. There is a full guide to Helium Staking on the project’s official website.

Where to buy Helium cryptocurrency (HNT), available exchanges

If you decide to invest in the Helium blockchain project, Binance supports three exchange pairs with this cryptocurrency: HNT/BTC, HNT/BUSD, HNT/USDT.

The platform has:

A convenient multilingual interface;
A large number of trading pairs;
There is an app for PC, as well as mobile application for Android and iOS;
BTC, Ethereum and LTC mining pool is available;
Additional tools for comfortable trading.
A full list of exchanges and trading pairs, as well as the current HNT exchange rate and other data is available at https://www.coingecko.com/ru/Криптовалюты/helium#markets.

Helium Wallets (HNT)

The first thing you need to do is to download Helium Hotspot mobile app. It is used both to set up your Helium miner and as a crypto wallet. Once you have downloaded the app and opened it, you need to click on the blue create in button. A seed phrase of 12 words is used to create the account.

Click on create well of words, save the words and pass the seed-phrase knowledge test. If you answer correctly, you can proceed to the next screen to enter the pin code. After that you will have access to the miners settings and your wallet.

The Helium Command Line Interface (CLI) wallet is the most flexible, but it also requires additional technical knowledge. Its source code is available at https://github.com/helium/helium-wallet-rs.

Helium blockchain supports Ledger hardware wallets. When installed on a Nano S or Nano X, the Helium ledger application allows:

View your Helium address(es) and balances.
Issue a payment to a single address.
Submit validator transactions, including bid, transfer and bid cancellation.
Detailed instructions on setting up the Helium ledger app can be found here.

Prospects for the development of Helium (HNT)

The project has great prospects, judging by the coverage map it is quite widespread in Western countries as well as in the Middle East and Asia-Pacific states. The HNT digital coin has appreciated by 36651.5% in a year, which means that Helium’s return on investment is higher than many top crypto projects. Most importantly, the technology really works and in developed countries Helium mining equipment brings real profit to the owner. You can read reviews about the project on social networks. There is a topic Helium Miner on the Russian-language forum of miners MiningClub.info.

Conclusion

The Internet of Things is the technology of the future, and the time will come when it will be used in every home. There will be not only smart things and smart homes, but also smart cities. And perhaps Helium will one day become the leading company in this field. So set aside some HNT tokens just in case.

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