Topics Altcoins
Bybit Learn
Bybit Learn
Intermediate
Feb 17, 2022

ICON Network (ICX): What Is It?

Buzzing with activity 24/7, the crypto market never sleeps… unlike its traditional counterparts. To date, the field has witnessed the birth of several blockchain projects and networks, each with different uses and functions. Perhaps one of the most unique is the ICON network.

Created by the South Korea-based ICON Foundation, ICON is arguably the blockchain of blockchains: It provides a platform for the interaction of different blockchains, while still focusing on interoperability and independence. Not only is it designed according to real-life economics, it also has high utility.

Using ICON as a medium, several fields, including business, healthcare and even nonprofit, create value and process transactions on the decentralized ICON ecosystem. The ICON network is run by a native token known as ICX, which is used for all trading transactions on the network.

What Is ICON Network?

Established in September 2017, ICON is an independent network founded by DAYLI Financial Group Inc. (DFG) of South Korea. The network serves as a point of convergence for blockchain communities from fields such as healthcare, finance and security via smart contracts, and provides a meeting point for various blockchains via Citizen nodes.

Dubbed the “ICON Republic,” the network solves a particularly pressing problem in the rapidly-evolving blockchain technology landscape — i.e., how widespread adoption of blockchain technology is limited by blockchains using their own networks.

The digital content distribution platform enables data to be stored and transferred securely. ICON Network implements a form of exclusive blockchain license using decentralized identifier (DID) technology. This is critical in the creation of a decentralized financial (DeFi) system that stores users’ details on digital devices, such as smartphones.

What Is the ICX Token?

The official/native token or currency of the ICON platform is ICX, which functions like Ether on the Ethereum network. All transactions on ICON Network must be made using the ICX token.

In September 2017, an initial coin offering (ICO) of approximately $43 million was made, leading to half the market cap of the ICX token supply to be sold. The ICON blockchain was launched in early 2018, and participants received their ICX tokens by mid-2018. In 2019, the ICON Network allowed users to implement its software to create unique tokenized assets with a standard token called IRC-16

How ICON Works

ICON describes itself as a network which “permits interoperable economic actors to develop their distinct forms of value in the way they choose.” Unlike centralized blockchains, where users must conform to laid-out rules, the ICON project allows each individual community node to maintain control of their own “corner” of its ecosystem.

The ICON Network functions using a unique consensus mechanism known as the delegated proof of contribution (DPoC), which runs on a loop chain algorithm known as loop fault tolerance (LFT). This protocol enables algorithmically selected users to vote for or against new block production. 

Subsequently, blocks are validated using validator nodes that both confirm the validity of proposed blocks and generate new ones. The loop chain functions using a process referred to as “spinning.” This process drastically reduces the number of the steps involved in generating and validating proposed new blocks, and increases transaction speed within the network.

Key Features

Citizen Nodes: These include active members of the ICON blockchain. This group of nodes does not possess the right to vote. However, they can perform transactions freely within the larger ICON Republic and individual communities.

Community Representatives (C-Reps): This set of users are elected by voting to represent each community in the ICON Republic. They are usually paid in ICX.

ICON Republic: This is the main governance system of the ICON platform, elected by the votes of the C-Reps. They oversee the minting of new ICX coins, but they do not control the individual communities.

ICON Community: This comprises a heavily focused network of nodes that function by a single governance system with individually determined characteristics, node numbers, decision-making process and government structure.

Community Node (C-Node): This organized structure is responsible for maintaining the blockchain of each community.

DApp Creation: The ICON project also possesses a blockchain feature which enables users to build decentralized applications (DApps).

Nexus: A looped chain, which is algorithmically operated and responsible for the maintenance of Nexus, the ICON Republic blockchain.

Real-Life Application: ICON’s decentralized economic model can be used in many real-life situations, including the storage of medical records and other high-profile personal data. Transactions are also processed quickly on the network.

Trade ICX on Bybit now!

ICX Tokenomics

Note: Figures below are accurate as of this writing, and are approximated up to two decimal places.

Total Supply — 800 million ICX 

Circulating Supply — 725 million (91% of total supply)

Market Capitalization — $538 million

24-Hour Trading Volume — $16 million

Price — $0.74 per ICX token 

Pros and Cons

Pros

Aids Independence: The ICON Network permits each community to create its system of operation and policies, which fosters independence and at the same time promotes interaction between other communities within the larger network. This enables each economic player to register their presence and operate on their own terms, without fear of third-party interference.

Lowered Transaction Fees: Transaction fees on ICON are significantly lower than those of competitors like Ethereum. This is achieved through presence of different blockchains on the network, which aids interconnectivity and eases the transfer of funds, cryptocurrency and data on the network, hence lowering transaction fees.

Reduced Transaction Time: The ICON platform reduces or even eliminates the action of unneeded mediators or intermediaries during the transaction process. This increases the speed of transactions on the network, thereby saving time. It also allows transactions to be performed in real time, eliminating delay.

Improved Security: The protocol used on the ICON network is not easily susceptible to hacking, system breakdowns and cyber bugs. This ensures the security of the transactions performed, and keeps user details safe. It also runs a decentralized system that ensures that the running of the network doesn’t fall into the hands of a select few.

Efficient Reward System: The ICON Network regularly rewards the community representatives who serve as intermediaries between the citizen nodes and the ICON republic, typically in the form of ICX tokens.

Cons

Overload: As a result of the different blockchains operating simultaneously on the ICON platform, it might be difficult or tedious to manage each community and monitor its operations while maintaining the functioning of the larger ICON Republic.

Fierce Competition: As it’s a relatively new project, investors may be skeptical about the ICON Network, potentially opting to use established centralized blockchain platforms instead.

Scalability Issues: As nodes have to confirm every transaction carried out on the network, the ICON Network could face scalability issues in the future.

Is ICON Network A Good Investment?

As a leading blockchain platform, ICON Network has attracted several high-profile investors since its inception, and its value is likely to continue to increase. The blockchain’s unique features, such as its blockchain mechanism and interoperability, are key selling points that will attract users.

If ICON can implement the goals, objectives and features it’s mapped out, there’s no doubt that it will become viral. The fact that ICON is highly focused on solving real-life problems in everyday economic systems (e.g., educational, commercial and healthcare) will likely lead to the generation of revenue sufficient to push up ICX’s price.

Buying ICX

ICX can be bought on various crypto exchanges. Here’s how you can buy ICX via Bybit.

Step 1

You must be a registered Bybit user to buy or sell cryptocurrencies on the exchange. Visit the official Bybit website and click on Register. Fill in the requested details and complete the quick verification process. 

Step 2

As the ICX token is paired with USDT on Bybit, you need to acquire USDT before making the trade. If you have USDT, transfer it to the Bybit exchange wallet, or buy USDT instantly via the Buy Crypto page.

Step 3 

Visit the Spot Market section and select the ICX/USDT pair. To avoid slippage, we recommend using a limit order to place your trades. Enter the amount of ICX tokens you want to purchase and click on Buy ICX. Once the order is filled, the tokens will be transferred to your Bybit wallet. 

ICX/USDT pair on Bybit
Source: Bybit | ICX/USDT

Step 4

You can store your ICX tokens in the exchange wallet if you intend to trade them and profit from price fluctuations. We recommend transferring large amounts of ICX to cold storage for additional security.

Closing Thoughts

Since its 2017 launch, the ICON network has experienced high levels of uncertainty and volatility, but has nevertheless managed to keep its head above water and maintain a competitive stance in the crypto industry. 

ICON has a variety of segments in its decentralized ecosystem, such as the balanced network (an interaction between four public representatives) and the open money market (an interaction between three public representatives which enables users to borrow assets and earn interest on the network). These interactions aim to bridge the gap between blockchains by encouraging increased economic activity across the network. 

As ICON Network’s utility increases, more investors will recognize its value and invest. All things considered, we’re excited to see how ICON performs in the future, as we believe it has the potential to go far.