The Centre Consortium Launches USDC 2.0 With New Functionalities
It’s a big excitement among cryptocurrency enthusiasts, especially USDC advocates, as the Centre Consortium announced on Thursday 27th August a major upgrade to the USDC 2.0 stablecoin.
The Centre Consortium was established by Coinbase and Circle to manage the USDC, a regulated Ethereum ERC-20 token launched in September 2018.
According to the statement released by the Centre Consortium on August 27, the recent update “comes at a time when USDC has punched through a $1.4B market cap solidifying its position as the fastest-growing regulated fully-reserved digital dollar stablecoin in the world.”
Aside from coinciding with the $1.4B market capitalization, USDC 2.0 also brought with it some significant upgrades, which included “gasless sends,” improved security and administration, and 100% backward compatible. The upgrade was claimed to significantly improve the usability and security of the USDC.
While discoursing the features of the update, the statement stated that USDC 2.0 will enable developers of USDC digital wallets to do away with the “gas fees” that have been plaguing transactions performed on the Ethereum network.
With the earlier version of the stablecoin (USDC 1.0), users of USDC digital wallets are required to purchase and hold some Ether to pay transaction fees. This procedure creates “an enormous barrier to mainstream adoption and broad usage of USDC for internet payments.”
Luckily, USDC 2.0 eliminates these so-called “gas fees” by introducing the concept of “gasless sends,” which allows developers to remove this complexity for users by either paying for the ETH-based transaction fees on behalf of users or make users pay these fees in USDC rather than ETH. This is a great improvement on using USDC in digital wallets for payment and transactions. Thus making the use of USDC in digital wallets closer to the mainstream mobile payment apps.
According to the statement, another feature of USDC 2.0 is the new set of on-chain M-of-N multiple-signature contracts, which include new consensus mechanisms. The Centre Consortium predicts that this new addition will be a major improvement on the “resiliency and growth of the Centre Consortium and move from off-line human processes into on-chain multiple signature processes.”
Hence, all administrative operations would be managed on-chain as against the initial manual off-chain processes. According to the Centre Consortium, this will bring about enhanced security, auditability, and subsequently resilience.
The statement said, “by using an M-of-N multiple signature model, these improvements also anticipate growth in Centre with more members, including issuing members who would participate in operational flows using on-chain tasks.”
Lastly, USDC 2.0 is fully backward compatible. That means there is no change or impact to existing USDC holders, USDC wallets, exchanges, or any applications currently integrated with USDC.
The new smart contract and protocol improvements for USDC were made available since August 27th, and developers of USDC-compatible digital wallets can now begin to take advantage of the “gasless sends.” Both Coinbase and Circle are also expected to introduce support for these protocol improvements in their respective products and services. More so, any third-party wallet developer can support and integrate this improvement using the public USDC smart contract.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, USDC stablecoin witnessed an “unprecedented adoption” soaring massively from about $450M at the beginning of March to over $1.4B currently – USDC surpassed the $1B market cap last July. The stablecoin also recorded over $90B in on-chain transaction volume.
The Centre Consortium stated that the COVID-19 pandemic caused a financial crisis that “resulted in currency volatility across many developing economies.” This raised the demand for digital dollar stablecoins that are inexpensive, fast, global, and secure, resulting in a significant increase in demand for USDC.”