The latest Counterparty (CP) release featured significantly cheaper sends and easier exchange integration. Under the hood, CP used to deal with inefficient dust outputs, and this upgrade eliminates that hurdle. In addition comes memo support, a new prerequisite, allowing for the attachment of short text to each transaction. These changes will be implemented as of block 489956, around October 16th.
These notable improvements are made possible by our core developer Devon Weller, as well as numerous volunteers. Mr. Weller has been retained by the foundation, and compensated by the generous donations of the community, for a six-month engagement.
Upcoming improvements as per our CP roadmap will begin with a Counterwallet overhaul - with an emphasis on fees. The user will be given full control of fees while the GUI will assist the user in choosing the best tradeoff between price and priority.
Soon to launch is Freewallet.io, a desktop wallet developed by Jeremy Johnson (aka J-Dog) of CoinDaddy and Xchain. Also emphasizing fee control, Freewallet will also excel in offering users Bitcoin trading on the Decentralized Exchange (DEX).
By the end of the year, CP plans to have introduced multi sends. In grouping several XCP and/or asset transfers into one single Bitcoin transaction, the fee for each send will thereby be greatly reduced. With this feature beneficial to transactions such as MPMA, one sender can group together a bulk transaction, and with others such as MCAT, you can even join a bulk transaction if you yourself only have one transfer to make. Such transfers will cost around a 5 cents (USD) even when a pure Bitcoin transaction fee is worth north of a dollar.
Another promising development is ongoing on picopayment lightning channels. If this comes to fruition, users will be able to make instant transfers at virtually no cost.
At the beginning of 2018, CP will consider the reevaluation of smart contracts, though this is partially dependent on the resolution of bugs within testnet’s Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). However, the development of a CP-specific Virtual Machine (CPVM) has also been proposed.
CP currently operates via specific smart contracts hardcoded into the counterparty protocol. Where the token system is integral to Counterparty’s protocol, the proposed equivalent Ethereum smart contract utilizes tokenization on a contracted basis. Also hardcoded within CP’s protocol is the highly popular DEX, and several features such as
dividends, broadcasts, and betting.
There are numerous factors that CP has yet to assess and consider in deciding on a firm direction in regards to the use of smart contracts, and are hopeful that a decision may be reached come the beginning of the new year.
What are your visions for the future of Counterparty? Let us know via the forums, Reddit, Slack channels or on Telegram.