I previously wrote an article about the Internet Computer working on a way to integrate Bitcoin into the ecosystem, for which I’m excited to finally give you an update.
What’s The Update?
Essentially, the Internet Computer just released its Beta version for the BTC<>ICP integration where the Bitcoin Testnet API is now available for developers to begin testing and building with the integration’s APIs.
The Beta release includes four features: an experimental Bitcoin Testnet integration API, a threshold ECDSA deployment with a test key, documentation, and sample code for deploying canisters in Motoko and Rust.
What’s The Takeaway?
The Beta version is the precursor to the general availability release that will come out in the coming months. The results of this integration will be — the Internet Computer’s innovative smart contract functionality will now be available for Bitcoin. But instead of working on the Bitcoin blockchain, everything’s on the Internet Computer blockchain, which has fast finality and low transaction costs. In the end, the BTC integration allows Internet Computer smart contracts to leverage Bitcoin, store them on the Internet Computer, and allow Bitcoin to be used for DeFi and on DApps being built on the Internet Computer.
What’s The Innovation?
The biggest innovation here is that this is a bridgeless integration. Bridges, of course, are a recent hot topic due to countless hacks, smart contract code bugs, exploits, and network outages, which have really set cross-chain functionality back to the Stone Age. However, this BTC-ICP integration contains no bridges, it’s trustless, has no single points of failure, and enables Internet Computer canisters to hold Bitcoin addresses and function as wallets that can hold, receive, and send Bitcoin through ECDSA signing keys.
In the end, this is a major push for developing Bitcoin (BTC) capable DeFi apps on the Internet Computer. So I’m predicting BTC will soon be available on IC DeFi, and soon afterward, other IC DApps will try and integrate BTC into their platforms to attract those users who want to see BTC in the world of DeFi (and metaverse).