Stanford Graduates Launched the First Smartphone-Native Cryptocurrency with Growing Adoption


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Former students and a researcher from Stanford University have developed a smartphone native cryptocurrency that aims to boost adoption with an enhanced user-friendly interface. This according to an article from The Stanford Daily, September 16, 2019.

A Network-Effect Cryptocurrency

Nicolas Kokkalis Ph.D., Chengdiao Fan Ph.D., Vince McPhilip M.B.A. ’18, and visiting student researcher Aurélien Schiltz, all from Stanford University have launched the Pi Network on March 2019.

Pi Network is a smartphone-based cryptocurrency that spurs crypto adoption by providing users with a friendly interface. According to the researchers, most people don’t benefit from cryptocurrencies as it is not easy for them to access the market and understand the different peculiarities of each token. The project reimagines public blockchains such as Bitcoin in a manner that allows more social inclusion. The network has already more than 500,000 users and aims to become used worldwide.

Pi does not rely on any energy-intensive algorithm as many other cryptocurrencies do. The security of the network relies on a dynamic system of mutual guarantees. Users, in fact, have to vouch for each other to guarantee the good faith of other users – a process similar to the verification. The verification framework allows users to mine straight from their mobile phone. Users can also benefit from their real-life social networks to participate in mining activities in exchange for a little battery usage with no financial costs, making it a very sustainable model.

Increasing Student Interest

As reported by BTCManager in late August, U.S. Universities are increasing their interest in both cryptocurrencies and blockchain. Leading crypto exchange Coinbase undertook an investigation into the top 50 U.S. Universities and discovered increased coverage of the new technologies into academic courses. Another peculiar finding is that crypto courses aren’t discussed in financial classes only. Other fields such as economics, humanities, and law-school are witnessing increased academic interest. 

Despite that the Pi Network hasn’t been backed by Stanford resources, it is clear that the academic environment played a key role in the development of the project. With the growing interest of Universities in cryptocurrency and blockchain, we are likely to see many other projects growing from academic classes.

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