Whether you are a crypto pro or a newbie, you can never be too careful when making crypto transactions. The long string of numbers and letters that makes up a wallet address, doesn't exactly roll off the tongue. It's easy to put in the wrong address and lose your assets forever. It is not the kind of transaction to be done in a rush, making it a nerve-wracking experience. Every time I wait for an on-chain transaction to show up, I wish for a less stressful way to transact. FIO protocol understands this. Making transactions straightforward will undoubtedly remove this barrier and add to the accelerated crypto adoption.
What is the FIO protocol?
The simple answer is - a solution to complicated crypto payments. FIO or the Foundation for Interwallet Operability is a DAC or a Decentralised Autonomous Consortia of wallet providers, exchanges, payment processors, applications, and protocols that work to make interoperability easier. A decentralized, open, and permission less protocol that anyone can join. FIO provides human-readable addresses for public keys. There are two parts to a FIO name - a domain and a handle. So, my FIO wallet name could be aakashablogs@publish0x, for instance, or aakashablogs@writer. Both the parts before and after the @ can be a custom name. If you have a business, you can go and get a custom domain and add multiple handles. These wallet addresses are NFTs. Once created, there is complete ownership of the name.
How is it any different from ENS or Unstoppable domains?
I am glad you asked. It's the same to the extent that ENS or Unstoppable domains provide a wallet naming solution, but there is much more to FIO than that.
- Besides FIO send feature with an uncomplicated crypto transfer, FIO also allows for requesting funds, with an additional attribute of a memo which can be an invoice or statement details for a transaction. This information is stored as metadata on the blockchain.
- FIO operates on its own blockchain, so there is no dependency or favoring of one blockchain or the other. It is a usability layer that can be used for any blockchain. This also enables secure transactions with increased privacy.
- Unlike other wallet naming services, FIO works across blockchains. One FIO address is all you need. It works across blockchains, such that when a payment is made it automatically recognizes the correct address and makes the deposit within the ecosystem participants. If you send ETH, it gets deposited into the ETH wallet and BTC into BTC with the same crypto name. It is similar to the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) used in India, which is a single-window interface that allows the transfer of money across banks. A username@walletname is all that is required to deposit or withdraw funds from the bank.
- FIO handles make it possible to sign NFTs to avoid forgery. Irrespective of who holds the NFT, the authenticity of the artist can be determined with a fio crypto handle. One is the first marketplace to have integrated this feature, and Talken is next.
FIO staking and FIP-21
If all of this sounds exciting, and you are wondering how to support the project, I have good news! The FIO community via the FIP 21 (FIO improvement proposal, which describes proposed changes to the FIO Protocol) has enabled the staking feature and it's available on the mainnet. FIO is a utility token for participating in the on-chain governance by staking your share. Staking will be activated on the 22 of February 2022, until which time rewards will accrue. As with any staking pool, committing in advance can be highly rewarding with the possibility of earning 450% APY.
Here's how you can go about staking FIO tokens.
- FIO Crypto handle and wallet.
- Check supported wallets here: https://fioprotocol.io/ecosystem/
- FIO tokens to stake
Register a FIO crypto handle
Edge wallet gives you the first crypto handle for free. Once you have added the FIO wallet, you should see an option to reserve a free address on the FIO domain under FIO names on the main menu.
Alternatively, once you set up Edge wallet, you can scan the Edge application QR code to open the link https://deep.edge.app/promotion/fio and reserve a preferred address. Select a handle of your choice and check to see if its available.
These handles can be likened to an email address and a domain name.
Staking on Edge Wallet:
At present, FIO can be staked either via Edge Wallet or Anchor Wallet. There are a few additional steps when using Anchor wallet, but there is more control over voting and governance. If that's a priority, then Anchor Wallet should be the choice. I went with Edge instead, and it was very straightforward to set it up.
Download and set up Edge wallet. Remember to safely store your private key during this process since there is no way to recover it if you forget or lose your keys.
Select 'Add wallet' to add FIO, then click 'create wallet' to generate the address. You can also choose to give your wallet any name you want at this stage.
Go to 'Stake' >> 'stake more funds' to start staking. Enter the amount - this can be either in fiat or FIO token. Confirm your stake to lock your tokens.
That's it! You are all set to start earning FIO rewards. Tokens locked before activation will receive a higher bounty than those locked after. Funds can be unstaked any time, although rewards won't accrue if dissolved prematurely. Redemption is available only after the 22nd of February. The unbonding period after unstaking is seven days.
FIO has a growing number of members and token holders. Staking will further increase participation with scope for economic benefits. Crypto adoption requires easy onboarding and crazy long addresses have to go away sooner or later. A universal crypto handle that manages all the different currencies and tokens is a much more sensible way to go. It is a user-friendly solution that encourages anyone new to the space to explore and try it out. Businesses will surely prefer one address that maps all assets automatically rather than tediously map them individually. All of this makes me super excited about FIO. If you haven’t yet, you should check out the project.
Disclaimer: Cryptocurrency trading and investment are subject to high risks. Always do your own research before you invest. The information in this article is for educational purposes and is not meant to be taken as financial advice.
Dear Reader, what do you think of the FIO protocol? Do you have a FIO or any other crypto handle? Go ahead and let me know in the comments. Show your love by adding a tip or a like! Your support encourages me to keep writing.