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One of the primary issues associated with first-generation blockchains such as Bitcoin is their perceived lack of scalability, which has prompted the developers of subsequent iterations and protocols to tackle the problem head-on. It's from this ambition that the DigiByte (DGB) blockchain was born, with the software designed to compete directly against major cryptocurrencies by providing improved scalability and enhanced levels of cybersecurity.
In fact, DigiByte is renowned as the fastest and most secure UTXO blockchain in existence, with new blocks occurring within the network every 15 seconds. In terms of transaction speeds, these are approximately 40-times faster than the market-leading blockchain Bitcoin, making DigiByte highly appealing from a practical perspective. Not only this, but DigiByte also serves as a complete blockchain network based on three alternative layers, offering users the opportunity to issue assets, launch applications, and fully utilize digital identities.
The top DigiByte layer is for the development and implementation of smart contracts, as well as decentralized applications and customizable tokens. The middle layer serves as the network's public and decentralized ledger, which enables its native DGB coin to move throughout the network and act as an underlying asset (there's a maximum supply of 21 billion coins available). Then there's a final bottom layer that represents the core infrastructure of the overall network, which includes functional elements such as decentralized nodes and the unique client software.
DigiByte is the brainchild of founder Jared Tate, with the blockchain officially launching in January 2014. DGB initially traded at below $0.0004 through April 2017, when it became the first major altcoin to activate SegWit (which is an action that's designed to help increase the block size limit on a particular blockchain). Two years later, in May 2019, DigiAssets was launched as the network's third layer, with this triggering noticeable (albeit modest) price growth by allowing for the creation of smart contracts, decentralized apps and similar entities as mentioned above.
Interestingly, DigiAssets can be used to securely and cryptographically represent anything that we find in the corporeal world, making it a trail-blazer for third-generation networks such as Cardano. There's a great deal more to the DigiByte network, of course, from its unique selection of mining algorithms to its capacity for real-time adjustment. However, we'll touch further on these factors a little later in the piece.
What is a DigiByte (DGB) Wallet?
Like all crypto assets, DGB tokens can be stored, managed, and exchanged on a compatible wallet. In fact, you'll need to access a wallet to send and receive DGB coins, with this type of asset completely digitized and offering no corporeal store of wealth.
In general terms, the software within a crypto or DGB wallet is connected directly to a particular blockchain, enabling you to submit various transactions to the decentralized ledger. As part of this process, the wallet also serves as a protocol that generates your public and private keys, the former of which contains historical transaction data and enables you to receive assets.
A public key usually takes the form of a randomly generated, 512-bit sequence of case-sensitive letters and numbers, while the last 20-bytes of this string reveal your unique wallet address. Though private keys are generated from the same algorithms that generate the public key, this is a secret and completely encrypted sequence that allows you to control how you spend your crypto assets.
Each private key is attached to your public address as an encrypted signature, which serves as proof of ownership of the wallet and can be used to authorize transactions. Private keys are further secured by a 12-word mnemonic seed phrase, which will never change and must be stored separately and safely at all times.
However, there are various types of DigiByte wallet available, so we've broken these down in a little further detail below:
A Hardware DBG Wallet
We'll start with the most secure type of DBG wallet, which may be referred to as either a cold or hardware wallet.
In simple terms, these are dedicated USB devices that are designed to send and store crypto assets offline, making them immune to the threat of malicious attacks and cybertheft. While they provide the ideal combination of security and usability, however, they're relatively expensive from the perspective of casual traders with minimal capital holdings. In fact, they can cost anywhere from $70 upwards, so you may choose a more cost-effective option as a part-time or low-level investor.
A Web DGB Wallet
If you are new to the world of crypto trading and assets such as DigiByte, you may find that web (or hot) wallets offer a more viable and accessible option.
These entities are available online and don't typically require any software installation. They can also be accessed simply in real-time through a viable Internet connection.
However, your private keys are typically stored on a centralized online server with this type of wallet, potentially exposing you to hackers, cyber-thieves, and third-parties.
Mobile and Desktop DGB Wallets
Mobile DGB wallets also offer good value for casual users, with most contemporary iterations widely available across Android and iOS software.
Like web alternatives, however, the accessibility and ease of use associated with mobile wallets are offset by increased exposure to hackers, although it's fair to say that smartphones and tablets (particularly those operating on iOS) may be a little more secure and less open than desktop devices.
In this respect, a mobile DGB wallet may be ideal for anyone who's looking to buy and store small amounts of cryptocurrency, with this type of hot wallet usually available through both browsers and independent apps.
A Paper DigiByte Wallet
We close with paper wallets, which provide a secure, cold storage option and operate in a simple and easy-to-understand way.
However, they can also be slightly more complex to set up while requiring you to print both public and private keys on a sheet of paper that must be kept safe and secure at all times. So, although this type of cold wallet should offer greater security and peace of mind to holders of DGB tokens, there's a greater onus on you to safeguard your unique public and private keys.
We'll delve into Atomic Wallet's unique composition and features below, but this entity is quite unique in that it acts as a non-custodial and decentralized wallet. This means that your unique seed phrase and private keys are stored and encrypted locally on your device rather than being accessible through a third-party and centralized exchange.
As a result, you retain full control over your sensitive information and funds at all times, creating a type of cold wallet that can also be accessed seamlessly and in real-time through encrypted mobile and desktop applications. Atomic Wallet is also one of numerous platforms that enables you to manage and exchange a diverse range of tokens through a single interface, while each will apply its own individual transaction fee.
There are also inherent transaction fees associated with each token, and DGB is no exception to this rule. This is typically far lower than alternative coins such as Bitcoin, with transaction fees for DGB usually expressed in fractions of a penny. Of course, this is proportionate to the lower value of DGB tokens in relation to BTC and rival altcoins, with this asset having reached its historic high of $0.116154 on January 5th, 2018.
What are DigiByte's 5 Mining Algorithms?
While most cryptocurrencies are renowned for being completely decentralized in their nature, this is slightly offset by the control afforded to a core group of developers, miners, and employees who manage individual networks.
Mining centralization is particularly troublesome, particularly in instances where there's only a single mining algorithm or a particular miner possesses more than half of the network's hash rate (enabling them to make proof-of-work consensus their tool).
This is commonly referred to as the "51% attack", which becomes a significant and strategic risk once a miner is able to control the majority of the hash rate. This could lead to sustained network disruption in some instances, as the miner in question would have the power to intentionally modify and manipulate the ordering of transactions.
The good news is that DigiByte has tackled this issue by utilizing five different and independent mining algorithms, which directly prevent mining centralization and automatically make the network more secure and transparent.
List of the five mining algorithms used in DigiByte's network:
- Scrypt (ASIC Mining) - Used in Litecoin and Dogecoin
- SHA256 (ASIC Mining) - Used in Bitcoin and most of its forks
- Qubit (GPU, CPU Mining) - Used in DigiByte
- Groestl (GPU, CPU Mining) - Used in DigiByte and GroestlCoin and is hardware friendly
- Skein (GPU Mining) - Used in DigiByte
As we can see, these mining protocols are quite diverse in nature, particularly in terms of the power available to miners and each user's potential return on investment. These protocols are also utilized alongside real-time difficulty adjustment measures, which help to further prevent malicious mining centralization over time. One particular measure is known as 'Odocrypt,' which changes itself every ten days to help optimize ASIC resistance.
In addition to decentralizing the mining process and optimizing the stability of the network as a whole, DGB's five protocols each have their own unique requirements and enable almost everyone to mine tokens. This is an important consideration and a key point of distinction between DigiByte and rival altcoins, particularly with the circulating supply of 14.13 billion DGB tokens significantly lower than the maximum supply of 21 billion.
What are Digitbyte's features?
In addition to DigiByte's five mining algorithms, what other features help to set this blockchain protocol apart?
One noticeable feature is the aforementioned deployment of Segregated Witness technology (SegWit), which is synonymous with Bitcoin and typically utilized during soft fork changes to increase block size limits on the network. DGB was the first major altcoin to implement SegWit in April 2017, as the network's founders sought to deliver on their promise of tackling the immense scalability issues associated with first-generation blockchains such as Bitcoin.
In practical terms, SegWit works by optimizing space in individual blocks, primarily by holding information on confirmations separately. This has enabled DGB transactions to become considerably faster over time, without compromising on the size of individual transactions or the volume processed within a given time period.
As we've already touched on, DigiByte also boasts three unique blockchain layers, allowing for far greater functionality and increased growth potential over time. These include a base layer that's responsible for generating consensus between nodes, which is fairly common within blockchains and helps to underpin DigiByte's core functions.
Next is the 'Digital Assets Layer,' which boasts an equally familiar and important purpose within the DGB blockchain. More specifically, this is responsible for transferring transactions and mining, and as a result of this, it holds the vast majority of the network's data. To put this into context, approximately 200,000 full nodes work on managing and processing the data included within this layer, which contributes to a stable and ultimately functional blockchain.
However, it's the third, 'Applications' layer that really sets DigiByte apart from most of its rival networks, as this creates the type of advanced and additional functionality that's synonymous with blockchains like Ethereum. It's this blockchain layer that allows for the development of transparent, encoded, and immutable smart contracts, while it can also be used to create customizable tokens for distribution.
Beyond this, decentralized applications (Dapps) can be built directly on top of DigiByte's top blockchain layer (also known as DigiAssets). This layer has immense potential and almost endless applications in the modern age, too, as it can be used to digitally recreate anything that exists in the physical realm.
We'll discuss how DGB's applications layer manifests itself in real-world applications later in the piece as the DigiByte blockchain continues to evolve and realize its immense potential.
DigiByte Wallet Features:
We've already touched on Atomic Wallet's unique set-up, which strikes the ideal balance between accessibility and security by acting as a non-custodial and decentralized platform for the comprehensive management of crypto assets.
Remember, Atomic Wallet ensures that your private keys are fully encrypted and will never leave your chosen device, so you retain full control of your funds and never have to risk having this data stored on a centralized exchange.
Through Atomic Wallet, you can manage and exchange up to 500 crypto assets, while it's also possible to buy DGB directly through the platform. However, you will need to verify your identity to access this wallet feature, with the use of a photo ID (such as a passport or driver's license) required to prevent theft or fraud.
You'll need to invest a minimum of $50 when first buying DGB tokens through Atomic Wallet, while a maximum of $2,000 of your chosen crypto asset can be procured on a daily basis. You won't need to verify your account to use the wallet's most basic features, however, so you can seamlessly manage and exchange tokens with the minimum of fuss here.
Despite being officially classed as a cold wallet that actively secures and encrypts your private keys, Atomic Wallet can be accessed seamlessly through desktop and mobile devices. So, you can manage your cryptocurrency portfolio and DGB assets from anywhere with Atomic Wallet without compromising your security or making your information more vulnerable to hackers.
What are some real-world applications for DigiByte?
The network's unique 'DigiAssets' blockchain layer has a huge range of potential real-world applications, which have become increasingly apparent in recent times.
One of the best examples of this is provided by the so-called 'Digusign' project, which originated in China and utilized intuitive smart contracts that allow users to store and sign electronic documents securely on the blockchain.
Digi-ID is another fascinating project and one that operates as an identity management platform that government agencies of the Netherlands currently use to verify the identity of Dutch residents online. The underlying objective here is to make virtual authentication processes considerably more transparent and decentralized while also utilizing cryptography to secure the sensitive data submitted to third parties.
As recently as 2015, Digi-ID was used for an estimated 200 million authentications by 12 million citizens, aptly demonstrating that this application has the potential to succeed in various markets and industries across the globe.
According to a recent announcement, the Ren protocol has also revealed support for DigiByte and the DGB token. As a result, Ren users will now be able to use DigiByte's native token to mint and burn Ren DGB through the LINKSWAP bridge, bringing the UTXO-based blockchain into the fast-growing world of decentralized finance.
How to store DBT Safely?
One of the main advantages of Atomic Wallet is its non-custodial nature, which ensures that your private keys are never stored on a vulnerable, centralized exchange. This minimizes the risk of fraud and theft considerably, as centralized crypto exchanges have an unfortunate history of being hacked or manipulated during the previous decade. However, it's still important that you adopt a proactive approach when managing DGB tokens and other crypto assets through your wallet, as this will provide an additional layer of protection at all times.
Most importantly, we'd recommend that you don't store your seed phrase of private keys as a picture or standalone text on your phone, email, or Google Drive. Remember, Atomic Wallet encrypts your private keys automatically on your chosen device, so replicating this data elsewhere on your phone or desktop is potentially risky and arguably unnecessary.
If you're a desktop user and do decide to store your private key information separately on your device, we'd recommend using a password-protected folder or ensuring that your Google Drive is secured with two-factor authentication and hardware security keys such as Titan.
On a similar note, it also makes sense to frequently back up your DigiByte wallet and cryptocurrency balance information. The reason for this is simple - it enables you to restore your balances from historical data in the event of a network failure or similar incident.
Just remember to back-up the relevant wallet.dat files on a hard drive or USB, as this creates a point of separation between your most sensitive data and a public or private network.
Regardless of what device you use, you should also take the time to regularly update your operating software. This creates a more robust defense against hackers and cyberthieves, ensuring that you don't become a soft target for individuals who want to seize control of your funds.
Top 5 things to know about DigiByte:
- Both DigiByte and Bitcoin utilize 'Unspent Transaction Output (UTXO), which is a technical method of tracking blockchain transactions between accounts. DGB boasted nine million blocks as of July 2019, allowing for transaction speeds that are 40-times faster than Bitcoin.
- DigiByte is considered to be one of the most secure blockchains in the world, primarily because it's distributed over 100,000 servers, devices, and nodes
- The DGB network has benefitted from numerous upgrades since 2014, with these entities commonly referred to as 'Improvement Milestones.' These soft forks were not considered splits and didn't generate any additional coins and were simply conceived to help improve and reorientate the direction of the network.
- Unlike many crypto projects, DigiBytes was not an ICO or underpinned by a token launched on an alternative network. Instead, it operates as a pure blockchain project with its own consensus rules like Bitcoin or Vertcoin.
- With its five mining algorithms and the 1-Click miner protocol, anybody can start participating in DGB mining (using only the graphics card in their computer). This makes the network incredibly accessible, while it also contributes to the innate security of the blockchain.
Clearly, DigiByte (DGB) is a diverse and advanced blockchain that has immense potential in terms of its future applications. This was reflected by the price forecast issued by Crypto Gunter at the beginning of 2020, which suggested that DGB's price could soar to $20 by the end of 2021 (affording the asset a total market capitalization of $220 billion in the process).
This forecast appears incredibly optimistic, however, with DGB sporting a real-time price of just $0.066009 as of March 17th, 2021. Most price predictions estimate that this will increase incrementally to around $0.10 by the end of the year, with the rate of adoption remaining steady rather than exponential across the globe.
Even price forecasts for 2025 suggest a potential ceiling of between $1.75 and $3.50, although much depends on how the network continues to scale and its ability to underpin significant Di-Fi and authorization projects during the next four years. The recent collaboration with the Ren protocol offers some optimism in this respect, so this is definitely a space to watch going forward.
Regardless, DGB is clearly an accessible crypto asset with significant growth potential in the longer-term, so now may be the ideal time to invest in the token and build a store of this asset in your Atomic Wallet.