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Submitted by on Sep 3, 2021

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IOTA is a cryptocurrency and open-source distributed ledger developed for the Internet of Things (IoT). It stores transactions on its ledger using a directed acyclic graph, which has the potential to be more scalable than blockchain-based distributed ledgers. IOTA does not employ miners to validate transactions; instead, nodes must approve two prior transactions before issuing a new transaction on the network. As a result, transactions may be issued without costs, making microtransactions easier. The network presently reaches consensus using the IOTA foundation’s coordinator node. The network is currently centralised since the coordinator is a single point of failure.

IOTA has been chastised for its unique design, which has raised questions about whether it would operate in practise. As a result, IOTA was completely rebuilt for the Chrysalis (IOTA 1.5) network update, which debuted on April 28, 2021. Controversial options like ternary encoding and quantum proof cryptography were dropped favoring established standards in this version. In late 2020, a testnet for a follow-up upgrade termed coordicide, or IOTA 2.0, was launched, with the goal of launching a distributed network in 2021 that does not rely on the coordinator for consensus.

David Snsteb, Dominik Schiener, Sergey Ivancheglo, and Serguei Popov developed the value transfer protocol IOTA in 2015, called after the smallest letter in the Greek alphabet. An online public crowdsale was used to fund the initial development, with users purchasing the IOTA value token with other digital currencies. A total of 1300 BTC (about 500,000 USD at the time) was raised, and the whole token supply was allocated pro-rata among the original investors. In 2016, the IOTA network became operational.


Early IOTA token holders gave 5% of the total token supply to continue development and establish what would ultimately become the IOTA foundation in 2017. The IOTA Foundation was established as a Stiftung in Berlin in 2018 to assist in IOTA technology research and development, education, and standardisation. The IOTA foundation is a board member of the International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications (INATBA). It is a founding member of the trusted-IoT alliance and the MOBI (mobility open blockchain initiative), which promotes blockchain and distributed ledgers in regulatory approaches, the IoT ecosystem, and mobility.

Sergey Ivancheglo resigned from the board of directors on June 23, 2019, following a disagreement between IOTA founders David Snsteb and Sergey Ivancheglo. The IOTA Foundation Board of Directors and Supervisory Board stated on December 10, 2020, that the Foundation has formally severed ways with David Snsteb.


IOTA claims to provide the same benefits of blockchain-based DLTs – decentralization, distribution, immutability, and trust – but without the drawbacks of wasted resources and transaction fees associated with mining. However, several of IOTA’s design elements are unique, and it’s uncertain if they’ll function in practice.

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