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Hackernoon logoTelegram Bots Have Helped Pave The Way for dApps by@ks.shilov

Telegram Bots Have Helped Pave The Way for dApps

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@ks.shilovKirill

Blockchain enthusiast developer and writer. My telegram: ksshilov

2020 is shaping up to be the year of dApps! New communities are forming around cryptocurrency and they are asking for just one thing: decentralization. All the services and platforms you are accessing online right now can be decentralized in one way or another.

Of course, the current leaders won’t give up power to their users so easily. And they don’t need to. Decentralized alternatives are being developed and, based on their growing communities, users have already made their choice.

In this article, I’m going to reveal a recent movement that’s happening across the crypto space, and what I believe to be a great way to find future growth in platforms. Let’s begin!

If you tried to keep up with news about cryptocurrency, I’m sure you have inevitably stumbled upon Twitter. Crypto Twitter, or CT for short, is already a thing and anyone who wants to attract the attention of cryptocurrency enthusiasts is going to do so in a tweet.

Anyway, Twitter (like most other social media platforms) remains a centralized, curated platform. The tweet feed that you’re casually checking out is the result of an algorithm controlled by the platform. Of course, Twitter can’t possibly display all the tweets of the people you’re following.

If that would be the case you might end up scrolling indefinitely, never reaching the end. Or the top in this case. Nevermind, Twitter, as a platform, doesn’t seem to be able to serve the crypto community well.

And I think the recent hack where Elon Musk, Kanye West, and Bill Gates’ accounts were hijacked promising Bitcoin payments is just the tip of the iceberg. Where is the community heading next? Where it always was: on Telegram!

Telegram has been serving the crypto community since 2018, when most decentralized projects needed a place where their communities can freely communicate without any external intervention.

Telegram is the best for it as it acts as nothing more than a group chat. It’s true that there are admins and moderators, but these are not Telegram employees. These are the project founders or even people from the community.

Plus, Telegram includes features like anonymity and encrypted chats, protecting its users’ privacy in the same way a cryptocurrency address does. All this package makes the messaging app a safe place for crypto enthusiasts. Based on the recent statistics, millions of crypto users are already using the app.

If we were looking at the number of followers of a project’s Twitter account to determine its popularity, I believe that watching a project’s activity on Telegram can be used as an effective metric to determine its success today. Following this idea, I came across one particular feature on Telegram that serves the basic needs of all cryptocurrency users: Wallet Bots

Let’s look into the best cryptocurrency wallets I’ve set up directly from my Telegram account.

Are you an ILCitizen?

The first bot of this kind that has seen interest on Telegram is the ILCoin Wallet Bot. Such a tool seems to be essential for the community of ILCitizens; users of the ILCoin protocol. The main function of the bot is to allow sending each other ILC coins by simply writing a chat message. This simple addition sparked more peer-to-peer transactions on the network than ever before. But why is that?

I’ve tried to understand ILCoin and its community. ILCoin began as an alternative to Bitcoin. Similar to Bitcoin or Ethereum, ILCoin is a protocol, it has its own native currency, and other dApps can be built on top of it. Actually, the Wallet Bot can be considered one of these dApps that become part of its environment. Let’s see how it works.

In order for the transactions to be considered legitimate, they need to take place on-chain. In order to be able to access the blockchain, store coins, and cast transactions you need to create a new wallet. Similar to any other blockchain.

Anyway, with the ILCoinWalletBot you’re not downloading any software, you’re not accessing any webpage, you don’t even need to write down a mnemonic phrase. You simply engage the bot in a private conversation with the text “/start” and that’s it. You’re ready to go! Now you can deposit funds in your newly created wallet with the command, you guessed it, “/deposit” and send coins to anyone instantly. 

There are many reasons why ILCoin is the perfect environment for dApp creation:

  • First of all, it allows for on-chain storage. That means fully decentralized storage with no limitations. Data transfer, payment processing, it all happens on the blockchain.
  • Its security is up to blockchain standards: SHA-256 Proof-of-Work is used for storage and transaction confirmation.
  • You get all of these features without compromising its scalability. Under the hood, it uses the RIFT protocol which allows mined blocks to contain mini-blocks (similar to sharding) but, in this case, the network size can be scaled up directly with the demand. There is no block limit (the network successfully mined 5GB blocks) and the processing of the mini-blocks can be done asynchronously, speeding up the confirmation time of individual blocks.

ILCitizens are already enjoying these benefits, and the Telegram bot is living proof of the protocol capabilities. I wouldn’t be surprised if more similar dApps will be joining the community soon.

All, with the press of a BUTTON

While exploring the “Crypto Telegram” space, I found that this is not the only Wallet Bot available. Actually, managing your cryptocurrency wallet through the Telegram app is a common practice. One of the communities I’ve found is formed by the users of the Button Wallet.

What makes it so desired between cryptocurrency owners is that the wallet created through the bot is noncustodial, completely decentralized, and free to use. There are more than 100,000 accounts created each year since it first launched in 2018.

Going back in time, two years ago there was a new startup whose founders saw the unexpected growth of interest towards Telegram of cryptocurrency owners.

To remind you, that’s when Twitter was hosting most of the crypto communities, and the Telegram craze was just starting. During that time, the team came with the idea of having a cryptocurrency wallet embedded in Telegram. And they did it! Button Wallet is a cryptocurrency wallet completely managed through the Telegram app.

Not only that, but the wallet acts according to crypto standards, allowing you to safely deposit, store, and send cryptocurrencies on multiple chains, such as BTC, ETH, BCH, LTC, ETC.

But it also lets you buy these coins directly from Telegram. The startup made a partnership with the payment processor Wyre and now you can have the newly acquired coins delivered directly to your Button Wallet.

Button Wallet uses your email address (which is supposed to have high security) to send you the private keys for safekeeping. If you were going to create a new wallet, make sure you are providing one of your email addresses that is safeguarded via 2FA authentication and has a strong password.

In fact, you could even create a new email address for this very purpose and never share it with anyone.

With an account created, you can simply deposit new funds, store them safely as long as your email address hasn’t been compromised, and even send them directly to your Telegram contacts.

It works similar to PayPal, where you can choose one of your contacts’ email addresses. Here you only need to type “@” and the Telegram handle of the person you want to send to. Telegram will make sure to fill in the username for you so you don’t need to worry about sending your coins to another person.

Button Wallet gives us a glimpse of a decentralized future where dapps and cryptocurrency can be easily accessed through a messaging application. Anyway, similar to ILCoin Wallet Bot, Button Wallet is a tipping wallet that should hold only a small amount of funds. For long-term storage, one should consider using a traditional software wallet or even a hardware wallet.

Papaya is not just a fruit

Papaya Bot is similar to the services described above. It’s a Telegram wallet for cryptocurrency. And to stretch the use of Telegram bots to the maximum, this wallet supports BTC, LTC, ETH, XLM, all ERC-20 tokens, as well as fiat-backed stablecoins like USDT, EURT, RUBT, AEDT, AUDT, and more. If you’re planning to build a cryptocurrency portfolio, Papaya Bot is one of the most diverse wallets out there.

Similar to ILCoin Wallet Bot, Papaya Bot is a custodian wallet service. There are no passwords or private keys involved, everything is handled by the software in the background. And by extension, the wallet is as secure as your Telegram account as the only way to access it is through your own account.

Papaya Bot is based on Stellar protocol and has one unique feature: transfers between Papaya users are completely free. No transfer fees involved. Of course, these transfers are handled off-chain but as an end-user, there is no difference in handling the coins.

The wallet is one of the easiest to use and it shows us what cryptocurrency users should look like in the future. There shouldn’t be any complex passwords to remember or technical requirements, storing and transferring cryptocurrency peer-to-peer should be done through a text at no cost.

Source: xkcd.com

Telegram, its growing communities, and especially bots are a great way to interact with cryptocurrency no matter if you’re a veteran or you just joined the space.

And what better service to use than a Wallet Bot. We all already have our own network of people on Telegram. Now imagine using these solutions to send money as easily as sending a Telegram message!

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