According to information shared with ETHNews, the distributed ledger technology platform Hedera Hashgraph has launched its Community Testing Program. Community members will be able to test, as well as build third-party applications on, Hedera's mainnet (plus testnets) while earning up to 1,000 hbars, the platform's native cryptocurrency. Sample features available to test include the Hedera Wallet, a content site called The Daily Timestamp, and a micropayments extension on the Chrome browser.
In its first phase, the testing program is largely focused on micropayments, according to Hedera's chief marketing officer, Christian Hasker. "We would like to understand what we need to do to make micropayments even easier for developers to integrate into their applications," he told ETHNews.
However, Hasker noted that Hedera hopes to also receive feedback regarding how its wallets are working, as well as insight into users' experiences with the platform's extension and portal (like account setup and KYC requirements). In addition, he said the feedback "will help our engineering team be able to work with and optimize real-world transactions on the network."
The testing program does not have an expiration date and is expected to "run beyond open access," Hasker maintains. More demo apps will be added to test other functionalities of the Hedera platform, such as decentralized markets, machine-to-machine negotiations, and internet of things payments.
Hedera Hashgraph is different than many networks in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space because it's built using a directed acyclic graph (DAG) – it's not actually a blockchain. The network's nodes share information through a gossip protocol, allowing all nodes to run the same consensus algorithm. Consensus regarding the state of the ledger, then, is reached without extra communication or bandwidth.
Hedera says its platform, because of its DAG structure, can handle hundreds of thousands of transactions per second, as opposed to only a handful of transactions per second within the Bitcoin and Ethereum networks. Moreover, Hedera has taken data privacy into consideration as it moves forward with development. Mance Harmon, co-founder and CEO of the company, explained:
"We are especially excited that consumers will get their first taste of the kinds of freedom of data ownership that micropayments can bring to business models."
Individuals can register to test Hedera's mainnet and testnets on the platform's portal.