My cryptocurrency picks for 2018 : part 2— Request Network — PayPal of the next generation?

Unexpected cryptocurrency Christmas sale (or as some people call it — the dip) happened over 2 last days. However — the revolution is safe, don’t worry!

The sale disappeared as fast as it arrived so it seems to be a perfect time to learn about another promising coin in preparation for next sale. As mentioned in the first part of series (which can be found there), my next pick is a coin based on the Ethereum platform. Lets see what this particular currency is about and what the team is trying to deliver.

2. Request Network

Request Networks (REQ) final Whitepaper came to life on October 25, 2017, created by the team behind the Moneytis project — a service that compares transfer fees for international money transfers.

But why is Moneytis important? I thought we were here to talk about cryptocurrencies, the revolution!

The Moneytis project won the ING startup pitch in 2015 and is supported by the Y Combinator which brought companies like AirBnb or Stripe to light. Those two facts show how competent and capable of delivering the team behind project is.

YC business tactics are EXTREMELY aggressive. YC doesnt fuck around with their startups. They will push Request down the throats of the normies in Silicon Valley and they will use it like addicts. They made Airbnb, Dropbox, Twitch etc mainstream and they will make Request into Venmo/PayPal 2.0
~ some random Reddit/Slack user.

The good news is that Y Combinator has decided to support Request Network as well. This alone is enough for me. Not for you? Okay… lets see what REQ is about then!

Request Network is a decentralized network, which allows users to create so called Request Invoices — which simply are requests for payment. How is the REQ token relevant for such endeavour though? In order for the transaction to go through small amount of REQ tokens are burned — the more transactions are happening, the lower the fees, which will eventually hit small amounts like 0.001 (currently $0.00034) of REQ coin for a transaction. This ensures that REQ tokens are in demand when system is in use. Additionally people that want to pay using Request Network don’t need to own the REQ coins personally — all they need is the currency they want to pay with.

Thanks to the use of blockchain the system is simple, secure and cheap in use.
  • Simplicity — everything happens with a click of a button unlike in traditional ETH transactions which include some newbie unfriendly things like providing the correct address or gas amounts.
  • Security — there is no need to share easily abused credit card information, everything is happening on the blockchain what ensures the system is immutable. After receiving automatic payment request generated e.g. by Amazon the user is asked to confirm — then the process continues.
  • Cheap — the REQ token which is required for the transaction to go through can be split into thousand pieces — this means the fees are minimal, unlike services like PayPal or Stripe which require from 1% to 7% of the amounts send as the fee. Request platform expects to charge between 0.05% to 0.5% of the transaction as a fee.
How the REQ apps will eventually look like

Another thing worth mentioning is that REQ aims to be currency-agnostic. The customer simply chooses to pay with Request Network then the system exchanges all the currencies accordingly to ensure the payment goes as planned.

Lets say Alice wants to pay for her new laptop with Bitcoins. She chooses “pay with Request” option. The system takes BTC out of her account then takes care of exchanging the bitcoins into USD for the seller, using cooperating systems. All this happens with one button click.

The system purpose seems simple to understand — why do we need the REQ tokens for though? Can’t we do the same without using specific coins for transaction fees?

Since REQ is using ETH blockchain, an ERC20 token is required and REQ is one of them. Using said blockchain enables REQ developers to focus on other tasks that need to be completed in order to make the system viable. As mentioned in part 1, ETH developers are working hard on scalability problems — lets allow REQ developers to work on problems connected to payments with the system. Additionally, at the early stages, cryptocurrency is very often about robust community — a separate token makes it easier for community of enthusiasts and investors to come together. What is more, using a token separated from other factors helps with security maximisation.

Handling payments through the Request Network will also help with taxes and audit — the companies will no longer need to perform long and expensive analysis of data scattered across all the possible payment systems.

Request roadmap

Presented above is the roadmap for Request Network which shows us what the team has planned for specific dates. The best part? We are already ahead of the schedule. What was initially planned for Q1 2018 (pushing REQ to Ethereum’s Test Net) has already happened — a working MVP (Minimal Viable Product) and a team that is ahead of its own schedule — it is not something you see often in the cryptocurrency world. See the full roadmap here!

What is more, the team is publishing progress updates every 2 weeks on Friday, those can be found there.

This all may sound too good. REQ is such a new coin, how come no one has thought of this idea before? Aren’t there any obstacles for the project?

The answer is of course there are obstacles. Some people compare REQ to OmiseGo(OMG) saying they are trying to achieve the same thing. Actually, the truth is that those two projects are complementary: REQ can use OMG as an oracle for fiat currency settlements on electronic wallets, while OMG might need REQ to perform decentralized payment requests, invoicing, audit or accounting. REQ team wrote a very detailed use case comparison, that you can find here.

REQ is a brand new coin — it is yet to see bigger recognition. What use is there of an amazing projects if others won’t be able to see its potential? There is also fear of the team not delivering promised features — what we have today is only an MVP, not final platform that can be used by vendors across the world. However, I believe further progression won’t be an issue — not with a team, that is working hard and (as mentioned hundred times before…) is already ahead of schedule. Still, the young age of REQ is something worth keeping at the back of our minds.

REQ price chart for the last month

As visible on the diagram above — those who invested in REQ shortly after the price plummeted after ICO (at the price of about $0.06) are already seeing 500% gains. This was a healthy growth, dictated by the updates announced by the team. I believe this shows how big confidence people put in this project. Why wouldn’t they? So far the things that happened were executed perfectly by the REQ team.

The team is already ahead of roadmap and with so many exciting things planned for REQ in 2018 (fully working system on the main network, escrow and tax payments, fiat-currencies management and much more), I can see that this will definitely be one of the most successful cryptocurrencies of next year.