Input Output Hong Kong has launched the testnet for the Cardano Alonzo smart contracts platform and revealed its rollout plan.
The Cardano project unveiled its plan for the rollout of its new smart contract platform on May 27. Called Alonzo, the first testnet for the platform has already been launched. One of the project’s associated entities, Input Output Hong Kong (IOHK), made the announcement.
The launch of Alonzo will take place in multiple phases, with each phase being identified by a color. The current phase, blue, will be succeeded by Alonzo White and Alonzo Purple. IOHK also said that it had already begun onboarding “a small, select group of SPOs & #Plutus Pioneers to help lay the foundations.”
Alonzo is a hard fork that will introduce new features to the Cardano network. It will do so through an integration of Plutus scripts, which means smart contracts can be enabled on the Cardano network. This will eventually lead to the development of new decentralized applications (dApps) — including decentralized finance (DeFi) related ones.
The effort will take a few more months to fully materialize, with a plan to bring more users in once more testnet functionalities and features are integrated. Not many more details were provided, but IOHK did say that it would reveal more in the near future.
Cardano has been doing tremendously well this year, with many new investors flocking to it. As an alternative to Ethereum, some analysts are hopeful that its new features will make it a popular platform of DeFi, though that remains to be seen.
IOHK CEO Charles Hoskinson is a prominent figure in the crypto world and has touted how Cardano can overcome many of the shortcomings faced by crypto projects. Cardano itself is in the middle of a long roadmap of development, with past successful releases boosting ADA prices significantly.
Cardano looking strong
ADA has been one of the standout performers in the past few months. This has been the result of many new developments, including the ability to create and execute P2P financial agreements.
Hoskinson also said that Cardano would not be threatened by Ethereum’s transition to proof-of-stake. One of Ethereum’s disadvantages is its scalability, which is currently being addressed with the ETH 2.0 upgrade. He argued that Cardano and Ethereum have different user bases, as well as having a more sustainable PoS mechanism.
Besides its technical improvements, Cardano is also targeting developing countries. The project announced a partnership with the Ethiopian government, with the goal of implementing distributed ledger technology (DLT) for education.