Ever since Justin Sun acquired BitTorrent Inc, there have been high expectations. Many people would love to see a form of incentivized torrenting through cryptocurrencies. Interestingly enough, the Upfiring dApp on the Ethereum network pursues a similar goal. So much even that it may very well beat the big dog to the punch line.
What is Upfiring?
The Ethereum ecosystem is home to hundreds of different distributed applications, or dApps. All of those applications try to focus on a specific use case which might bring cryptocurrency to a mainstream level sooner or later. Upfiring is one of those projects that has gone by largely unnoticed. That is only normal, as the venture is still in the early stages of development.
The goal of the developers is to create a correlation between the project’s smart contracts and a modified torrent protocol. In a sense, they established a decentralized smart contract-based file-sharing application. Anyone will be able to “sell” files they upload, which certainly makes it appealing. In fact, it is very similar to what Justin Sun hopes to do with the BitTorrent protocol in the months and years to come. Incentivizing users to torrent – either as an uploader or downloader – will not come easy, however.
Solving the Scaling Conundrum
One topic revisited rather often in the cryptocurrency space is scaling. Blockchain technology is great, but it cannot scale to the level of mainstream adoption. That is as true for Bitcoin as it is for Ethereum and virtually every other cryptocurrency out there. dApps running on such a blockchain will face similar issues. For the Upfiring team, this is problematic. The current iteration supports under two dozen files with ease, which is far from ideal.
It did not take long until the initial users started to abandon this project due to scaling issues. Luckily, it seems there are a few solutions in development. Although it took a lot more time than expected, the new torrenting module seems to take care of most problems right now. Surprisingly, this was achieved by rewriting the module in C++., which is considered to be a more primitive coding language. Even so, it provides solutions to problems faced by the team. There is still some work to be done in terms of achieving larger file sizes, but that is currently being worked on.
Not Ready for Use yet
The current version of the Upfiring dApp can be used by anyone who is interested in doing so. However, the developers warn it is not ready for main use right now, as that will only happen once version 1.2 is released. When that will be, remains to be determined at this time. A fair few aspects need to be tweaked further, and the developers are not inclined to rush the project in any way.