Streamr is a complete system that will be able to tokenize real-time data, allowing people as well as machines to trade it via the system’s decentralized P2P network. Streamr is frequently compared to IOTA because the two are in direct competition, even though Streamr’s is still growing while IOTA recently exploded to take it’s place among the top cryptocurrencies by marketcap.
To illustrate how Streamr works in a real-world scenario, consider the example of a self-driving electric car. To work at optimum efficiency and capacity, that vehicle would need data on things like electricity prices, traffic congestion, and weather forecasts. The car would be able to get all this information in real-time via Streamr, paying for everything using the DATAcoin token. In return, the car sells the data it produces, such as road condition and traffic information. The team behind Streamr argues that this is just one of the many ways that a data stream economy will be developed, with users in control of their own data instead of big corporations.
Why the IOTA Solution to IoT Is Less Than Ideal
The team behind Streamr felt that this platform was necessary because of somethings lacking in the IOTA platform. IOTA is essentially a blockchain that was created specifically for the IoT. Those at Streamr feel that the IoT can indeed get help from certain parts of blockchain technology, like the censorship resistance and permission-less elements. However, this is not ideal, and there is simply no need to create a dedicated blockchain for the task.
Additionally, storing the IoT data on the blockchain leads to all sorts of issues, most importantly the problems related to both scalability and centralization. The team at Streamr realized that there is no need to store all the data generated from the IoT on the blockchain. Most of this data has minimal value when not used in real-time. With the self-driving electric car example, the auto wouldn’t need to know where a traffic jam was a year ago, just the ones at the moment.
In addition, the blockchain was not designed to hold large quantities of data. Instead, it was created for storing limited data in a robust way. Given the sheer amount of data produced by the IoT, it becomes clear why these two are at opposition. To effectively use blockchain technology with the IoT, you must limit the data stored to some extent, and Streamr does this by focusing solely on live data.
A Major Difference Between Streamr and IOTA: The Blockchain
After looking at IOTA, the IoT, and blockchain technology, the team at Streamr realized that a different approach was necessary. The largest difference between IOTA and Streamr is that IOTA felt the need to develop a completely new blockchain while Streamr saved resources by using the existing Ethereum blockchain.
This allows Streamr to benefit from the technology associated with the Ethereum blockchain without reinventing the wheel and creating a new blockchain. Instead, the team can focus on developing additional features.
What Are Some Other Advantages of Streamr?
Streamr has been working to develop the platform and data marketplace for years. In fact, it used to be a private company and has already proven that the system works. This experience should allow it to maximize scalability while minimizing latency. Streamr also takes advantage of the existing Ethereum network’s features, such as its security and payment methods.
What to Know about DATAcoins?
DATAcoins are an integral part of Streamr. They are part of every transaction, whether you buy or sell data via the platform. Compared to other cryptocurrencies, including the IOTA token, DATAcoins are still relatively affordable, making it the perfect time to invest if you plan on participating in the Streamr platform. Whether you choose to buy or sell data via Streamr, you will need the tokens to complete your transactions.
You will need the DATAcoin for a minimum of two purposes. You will need it to use the Streamr network and to pay for data licenses in the case of data on the marketplace that is not free. That first use of DATAcoins goes to very small fees. Since Streamr is a decentralized P2P network, it relies on nodes to form the network. So, those nodes will receive the fees in exchange for their data transport services.
DATAcoin is also used for karma, which is the metric for reputation used for message brokers, data consumers, and data producers. You earn karma from your DATAcoin transactions, with the quantity of karma earned being identical to the quantity of DATAcoin exchanged. However, keep in mind that karma will eventually expire after decaying, which DATAcoins do not do.
What Are the Key Parts of the Streamr Stack?
The decentralized pipeline of real-time data uses a multilayered technology stack. The Streamr Editor is a usability layer as well as a toolkit that makes it possible to quickly develop data-driven and decentralized applications. The Streamr Network is the layer for data transportation.
The high-performance Streamr Engine processes events and runs analytics. It executes off-chain in a decentralized fashion. The Streamr Data Market is the set of shared data streams that users can subscribe and contribute to. Finally, Streamr smart contracts let the nodes within the network reach consensus, handle integrity checking and permissioning, facilitate secure token transfers, and hold stream metadata. For those who want to see these tools in action, Streamr has explanatory videos on its website.
There is no denying that the IoT is everywhere and produces a significant amount of data. While solutions like IOTA have been available for a while, that does not make them the best. Streamr has a history long enough to inspire confidence and improves on the shortcomings of IOTA. The fact that Streamr uses the Ethereum blockchain instead of trying to create its own has allowed for extra research and development in other areas, which should translate into a positive user experience and reliable data. With an experienced team and strong technology, Streamr should continue to grow and prove even more useful in the future.