Welcome on Board: Changelly and IoTeX Talking Crypto

Changelly interview with IOTEX

With IoTeX being listed on Changelly, the IOTX has become available for seamless crypto swaps for 150+ other cryptos available in Changelly service and Changelly mobile application. Our CEO Eric Benz has invited Raullen Chai, co-founder of IoTeX for crypto-talk to unveil the company’s short- and long-term development plans.

Also, just the other day our two companies have carried out a super generous giveaway with prize fund worth $100.000! If you’ve missed the promo don’t despair, since we have various cool activities almost every week! So, subscribe to Changelly blog and keep abreast of our latest crypto-giveaways while reading Promotions section.

Eric:
So, IoTeX is enabling a decentralized network for the Internet of Trusted Things (IoTT), would you be able to elaborate more on this subject and what it can provide to the world?

Raullen:
Today’s Internet of Things (IoT) consists of billions of Internet-connect devices, which add convenience to our daily lives but also present urgent challenges for our security and privacy. New hacks and data breaches occur every day, yet most of society continues with business as usual as there is a “safety net” for digital data — if your bank account gets hacked, at the end of the day your bank will help to fix your problems. However, when hacks extend from our digital data to our physical devices, we are talking about a totally different problem with no safety nets. If a connected vehicle is hacked on the freeway and crashes, that is a REAL repercussion that cannot be reversed. This is why IoTeX is focused on enabling true end-to-end security, privacy, and trust to protect our data, devices, and networks.

Just like Bitcoin has built a decentralized and trusted network for payments, IoTeX is creating a decentralized and trusted network for connected devices — what we call the Internet of Trusted Things (IoTT).

Raullen Chai, co-founder of IoTeX

Our vision for the Internet of Trusted Things will enable all physical and virtual “things” — people, devices, businesses, DApps — to exchange information and value with full trust and at global scale. Our vision also pushes data ownership/control to the user, which will catalyze a new user-centric and privacy-focused future.

Eric:
Now, from IoTT perspective, how will IoTeX power the Internet of Trusted Things?

Raullen:
IoTeX’s vision for the Internet of Trusted Things will undoubtedly change the world for the better. But how will we get there? The truth is blockchain alone cannot To build true end-to-end security and trust, we need trusted data from trusted devices managed by a trusted infrastructure with trusted computing resources. This goal involves not only blockchain, but also technologies including secure hardware, decentralized identity (DID), and new connectivity types (e.g., 5G, LoRa). What truly differentiates IoTeX is that we not only have a deep understanding of blockchain, but also IoT and traditional Cloud infrastructure. Creating the Internet of Trusted Things with full end-to-end trust requires using/merging technologies in a “fit for purpose” way.

To give you an example, IoTeX is launching several blockchain-enabled IoT products very soon. One is called Ucam, a fully private home security camera that recently won a CES Innovation Award for Cybersecurity & Privacy. Ucam utilizes hardware innovations, custom firmware for end-to-end encryption, and software in the form of blockchain and decentralized identity frameworks to achieve full data privacy and end-to-end trust. We hope to inspire others to build similar products as Ucam by offering the needed tools/capabilities, as well as “templates” to showcase real game-changing products that can be built only on IoTeX.

Eric:
People say that the future is totally going to focus around IoT; a network which can be considered centralized by some. So how can IoTeX decentralise, an already perceived to be a centralized system?

Raullen:
Today’s Internet of Things is extremely centralized. IoT data is grouped in vertical silos, which are owned by tech giants like Google, Apple, and Amazon. These silos restrict interoperability and fundamentally “lock” our data — in other words, once we give our data to corporations, they make it incredibly hard to take back our data. Our vision is to break down these vertical silos to make IoT horizontally scalable and user-centric, rather than corporation-centric. Some parts will be technologically driven, while others will be culturally driven. We must not only give people decentralized products, but also educate them on the benefits to drive adoption.

The first step to fulfill this vision of a decentralized Internet of Trusted Things is to deliver data ownership back to the user. Whether you are a consumer, small-to-medium business (SMB), or enterprise, owning your data means you have full control of whether to keep data private, share it with authorized users, or buy/sell/trade it in open P2P marketplaces. Although consumer privacy laws like Europe’s GDPR and California’s CCPA will help to drive this change, we cannot rely on regulations and Terms & Conditions to protect our privacy — we must utilize trusted technologies like IoTeX with “privacy by design”.

Eric:
Regarding IoTeX’s infrastructure, it has been labeled as more than just blockchain. Would you kindly reflect how so?

Raullen:
To put it simply, IoTeX’s vision for end-to-end trust does not start and end with blockchain. Rather, our vision starts with ensuring any data written to blockchain is trusted and secure and ends with allowing developers to compute over encrypted data — blockchain alone cannot enable these capabilities. There are multiple technological layers of the IoTeX platform, namely blockchain, secure hardware, and decentralized identity (DID). Each of these technologies plays a specific role. Blockchain is the foundation for trust, transparency, and decentralization for the entire IoTeX Network. Secure hardware enabled by the Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) is a hardware-based approach to privacy for data-at-rest, in-transit, and in-use (i.e., runtime). Finally, decentralized identity (DID) allows humans, machines, and businesses to own their own data/identity and transact in a P2P fashion. These three key pillars of the IoTeX platform enable powerful tools/capabilities, including data oracles, trusted computing, secure authorizations, and IoT data marketplaces.

Eric:
What solutions will IoTeX give to the end-user? Or more-so, to developers and people working in tech?

Raullen:
The solutions delivered to end-users and developers are different. What we deliver to end-users is simple yet transformational — anyone that uses IoTeX products will fully own their data, identity, and privacy. Delivering data ownership back to the end-user does not mean that have to live a disconnected lifestyle. It just means that they have the choice to keep their data fully private or expose it to others, such as service providers. This in itself is a massive paradigm shift, which is a prerequisite for data monetization, data-as-a-service, and other more advanced use cases.

For developers, IoTeX offers a variety of powerful tools/capabilities that are unique to IoTeX. We are the only platform in both the crypto and traditional worlds that is designing a platform for full end-to-end trust. This means that developers can leverage our tools off-the-shelf and build next-gen products. Another interesting perk for developers/businesses is because consumers own their data, businesses are not liable for GDPR-related compliance as they never touch the customer’s data.

Eric:
When starting publicly back in July 2017, did you see the IOTX token’s mission evolve as time passed? 

Raullen:
Our mission has largely been the same since we started — we always knew we wanted to build a robust, privacy-centric infrastructure for the Internet of Trusted Things. However, our approach to achieving this has changed over the years. Throughout July 2017 – April 2019, much of our work was focused on building out the IoTeX platform and protocol from scratch (i.e., no forks!). This included designing our Roll-DPoS consensus mechanism, onboarding Delegates, and launching four Testnet releases. Now that the platform is live and stable, a new focus as of late has been to build real products and services on top of our platform. This has been a shift in thinking — we are no longer just talking about blockchain primitives, but rather how to use our platform to solve real world problems. Going forward, we will continue to build out the platform and protocol (our full-fledged Mainnet GA is coming in Q1/Q2 2020) and also work with our partners/enterprises to use our platform to power next-gen products.

Eric:
How does the token function within the platform?

Raullen:
The IoTeX token (IOTX) serves multiple functions within the IoTeX Network. It is a utility token that is used for staking/governance, gas fees for transactions/contracts, and also registration of IoT device identities. The first two are things most blockchain-educated people are familiar with — the native token balances incentives between users and miners/Delegates and also represents “bandwidth” in the network. Although we have unique designs for our crypto-economics, the overall structure is similar to other public blockchain platforms like Ethereum. One thing that is truly unique is that an amount of IOTX will be burned every time a new IoT device is registered to the IoTeX Network. This means IOTX is a deflationary token, where the more devices (i.e., decentralized identities) are registered to the network, the less supply of IOTX there will be. This provides incentives for community to encourage more devices are added to the network, as well as ensures there is “something at stake” for businesses.

Eric:
What gives IoTeX the edge over other competitive blockchain technologies? 

Raullen:
IoTeX is uniquely positioned to dominate our “competitors”, but in reality there is nobody that is working on the same things as us. Many compare us to other companies in the blockchain & IoT space, but we also incorporate advanced privacy technologies and complementary hardware which enable capabilities that are truly unique to IoTeX. As far as areas where IoTeX has an edge, this ranges from our top-tier team to our long-term vision to our ability to deliver real results. Everyone knows that the blockchain industry is full of vaporware and false claims. However, even amongst the projects that are building real things, there are nuances that may seem small but make a world of difference. In this industry, it is so easy to copy others’ concepts and vision statements, but something that cannot be copied is the execution. At the end of the day, we believe we are in mile one of a marathon, and IoTeX has the stamina and experience to make it to the finish line.

Eric:
Privacy and security are two major factors that are currently being focused on by multiple blockchain-based companies out there, how does your technology solve or help boost these issues? 

Raullen:
Privacy and security are of the utmost importance to IoTeX. While some companies think about “layering on” privacy and security, IoTeX employs a philosophy of “privacy by design”. This means the upfront design of IoTeX prioritizes privacy as a must-have, not just an afterthought. One unique way we add privacy to the IoTeX Network is through secure hardware. IoTeX manufactures our own secure hardware in-house, including Pebble Tracker, a smart tracker dev kit for built-in GPS, temperature, humidity, air quality, and motion/vibration sensors, and AvoBoard, a privacy-preserving IoT gateway. These devices utilize special chips called Trusted Execution Environment (TEE), which are used in your credit cards for secure payments and also your iPhone to manage your fingerprints and Face IDs. What IoTeX has done is create state-of-the-art middleware and tools that allow developers to build very expressive and privacy-preserving applications using our secure hardware.

Eric:
Where do you see IoTeX in the next 5-10 years?

Raullen:
One long-term goal we have is to make IoTeX the standard for all future blockchain & IoT deployments. We have already started the work to standardize our protocol by collaborating with various standards bodies (e.g., IEEE, NIST) and product development consortiums (e.g., IIC, TIoTA). With every new IoTeX product (e.g., Ucam), we are expanding our own in-house understanding of how to best deploy blockchain in the real world, which will eventually guide the development of IoTeX. This is an important concept — IoTeX is building and shipping real world products not as our end goal, but as a means to provide “templates” for others to build on top of or customize. The more templates we build, the more inspiration we provide to our community and enterprises, which will surely help our goal of making IoTeX the standard for the blockchain & IoT industry.

Eric:
Is there anything else you’d like to share with our viewers? 

Raullen:
IoTeX has flown under the radar for the past couple years while we have been “heads down” building our platform. We did not do an ICO and have not spent exorbitant amounts of money on marketing like other projects, most of which are irrelevant today (i.e., no real products or plans for real products). IoTeX is not your typical “crypto project” — we do not hype our accomplishments and are in this for the long run. In other words, we evaluate ourselves on a different scale, which is centered around real world value and adoption. To that end, IoTeX is truly one of the hidden gems in the entire blockchain industry. 2020 will be a huge year for IoTeX with several real products hitting the global market — if you are interested in following or joining projects that have a real shot at mass adoption, look no further than IoTeX.

If you had to meet Satoshi one day, what’s the first question you would ask him?

Isn’t it obvious? I’d ask him for his private key! In all seriousness, I’m very interested to know the motivation behind why he created Bitcoin. Was it personal, political, financial, social, or just to stir things up? No matter what the reason, Satoshi has sparked a new wave of thinking that will define the upcoming generation. Many times, we in the blockchain industry get so enamoured with the “new shiny objects” that we forget why we are all in this industry — decentralization. Let’s all continue to represent Satoshi’s vision to the fullest!

Let’s do that! Thank you so much for the inspiring Crypto talk. See you in the endless crypto space!

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