The Aptos project was launched in October 2022, and immediately drew the attention of the crypto community. It received a mixed response, with some calling it a “Solana killer” and “the fastest network in the history of crypto”, while others said it was “the most ingenious scam of 2022”.
So what is Aptos? We’ll take you through the basics in this article.
A brief history of Aptos
The Aptos blockchain was created by former employees at Meta, the holding company that owns a couple of social networks we’re all familiar with and the WhatsApp messaging service. Since 2018, they had been working on a project to integrate crypto into Meta’s products: Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp. The Diem stablecoin, however, was not fated to see the light of day. The U.S. Federal Reserve opposed it and, after several congressional hearings, the project was halted.
Shortly afterwards, former Meta partner relations department head Mohammad Shaikh and head of blockchain development Avery Ching founded Aptos Labs, which served as the basis for the creation of a new startup. The Aptos team also onboarded many other experts who had been involved in the Diem project.
The project received significant support from major investors, attracted millions of dollars in investment, ran a high-impact advertising campaign and announced the startup to great fanfare within the crypto community.
What is Aptos and how does it mark itself out in the space?
Aptos is a public, Layer 1 network written in the Move programming language, which was created for Diem. It uses the AptosBFT consensus algorithm, which combines proof-of-stake (PoS) and Byzantine fault tolerance (BFT). This combination is used by other networks, including Fantom.
BFT offers networks a high level of protection from hostile acts, allowing the blockchain to function properly even if as many as a third of the network validators don’t respond or produce incorrect data.
Additionally, Aptos processes transactions in parallel rather than sequentially, which the developers say gives the blockchain a TPS of more than 160,000 transactions per second and a transaction completion time (the delay between submission and execution) of less than one second.
The core principles underlying the project are scalability, security, reliability and upgradability.
The Aptos team is developing an ecosystem of decentralized applications, and the blockchain can be used for all standard crypto use cases, such as DeFi, NFTs and the metaverse.
Aptos has a modular structure. This allows participants to divide the network into conditional segments and, as a result, quickly implement DApps and new Web3 solutions.
Users, applications and smart contracts interact in Aptos via the Move VM. The developers hope that it will become a competitor to the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM).
Aptos is ultimately aiming to compete with the likes of Ethereum and Solana.
The network’s native coin
The platform’s native token is APT. Its current value is around $6, and the total market capitalization is in the region of $1.5 billion. APT token holders can delegate tokens to validators, i.e. send them for staking. APT can be purchased on major exchanges, including Binance, Huobi and Coinbase.
The Aptos architecture
The basic functioning of the blockchain is provided by the consensus algorithm that uses proof-of-state and BFT, along with delegated validators. Network participants “pledge” their tokens for the opportunity to become a validator and receive a reward for supporting the operation of the network. A minimum of 1 million APT tokens must be staked.
The network is segmented, and participation levels are divided into full nodes and Light clients. Full nodes are responsible for storing a complete copy of the blockchain and validating transactions and blocks. The latter, which use Simplified Payment Verification (SPV), store only part of the blockchain. By storing just block headers, for example, they can confirm transactions without downloading the entire blockchain history. They cannot replace full nodes and instead work alongside them. This approach allows them to interact more quickly with the network.
The network itself is modular, and every element within the system can function independently. If a problem is encountered or an update is required, the other parts of the network will be unaffected. This also improves scalability: participants can add and update modules individually without having to rebuild the entire system.
The most interesting feature of Aptos is its resources, which represent objects that cannot be copied or discarded. Resources must be registered by users on their own accounts, which makes token spam impossible and provides security and control for assets on the Aptos network. Since resources cannot be accidentally lost or duplicated, this prevents many potential threats and attacks that could occur in other blockchain systems.
DApps on Aptos
As we already mentioned, Aptos is building out a decentralized application ecosystem on its network. Aptos is currently home to a wide range of DApps, such as DEXs, NFT marketplaces, DAOs, DeFi platforms, cross-chain bridges, crypto wallets and more. Some examples include Aptos Bridge, Liquidswap, Ditto, Tortuga, Topaz, AptosLauncher and Petra.
The future of Aptos
Aptos is one of the most advertised projects in the crypto industry. Thanks to its impressive marketing, it is also one of the most talked about blockchain platforms. Given that it offers many interesting features and has a serious development team, it certainly has the potential to become a very successful project.
Aptos is also more than capable of solving the blockchain trilemma facing any Layer 1 network. In the future, Web3 developers and parties seeking to expand the capabilities of the DApp ecosystem may choose to develop on top of the network.