What Is Theta? | THETA Review
Aug 12, 20225 min read
Decentralized video streaming platforms offer a new and improved way to deliver content. Thanks to Theta, cheaper and faster broadcasts can be carried out. In the future, the platform may occupy a niche of such giants as YouTube and Twitch, which actively support their rivals. You can learn more about the project in today’s article.
What Is Theta?
Theta is a decentralized blockchain network designed for video streaming. The project aims to solve the main problems associated with the streaming industry: high costs for the content delivery network (CDN), poor quality of streams, and centralization. The project opens up a new decentralized infrastructure for streaming video broadcasting for users. Different types of content are supported: movies, music, esports, and TV series.
The project developers emphasize that modern content delivery networks cannot cover all regions, which leads to long video downloads in many parts of the world. At the same time, viewers are demanding higher and higher quality — 4K or 8K, which traditional platforms cannot provide. Another problem is the centralized nature of the services, which share only a small part of the income with streamers and video bloggers.
Among the projects based on the Theta protocol, the company’s own development stands out — Theta.tv. Viewers are offered streams for every taste: games, memes, poker. Famous participants include the popular Youtube channel Failarmy and the organizers of the World Poker Tour. The community is international. Bloggers from Serbia, France, Russia, and other countries conduct their streams. The platform provides viewing of broadcasts in high quality with minimal drawdowns.
Theta is a reasonably successful project with a wide list of partners and advisors. Among the significant partners and supporters of the project are Samsung, Google, SONY, and Binance. In addition, it is interesting that the Youtube co-founder (one of the most famous centralized servicers) is Theta’s advisor.
How Does Theta Work?
The system uses a unique consensus mechanism - multi-level Byzantine Fault Tolerance (a subspecies of PoS). It differs from the classic BFT because the latter does not allow a high level of decentralization and does not provide large bandwidth. The modified mechanism allows thousands of nodes to participate in consensus achievement. The transaction processing speed reaches 1000 TPS. The essence of the mechanism:
- There are 28 Validator Nodes in the system. They belong to Google, Gumi, Samsung, and other significant partners. Their function is to quickly generate blocks using the BFT mechanism and provide the first level of network protection. To become Validators, users have to stake at least 1 million THETA.
- There are more than 3,300 Guardian Nodes. They identify malicious or non-functional Validator Nodes. To do the job of a custodian, you must stake at least 1000 THETA coins. You can install the Guardian Node on Windows, Linux, and Mac OS operating systems.
- Over 150,000 Edge Nodes broadcast streaming videos over the network and earn TFUEL. They provide support for Theta.tv and all future projects and platforms related to the network. Users can broadcast their video streams on a peer-to-peer basis, excluding centralized CDNs from the process.
Thanks to thousands of nodes and two-level protection (validators and guardians), greater network security is provided. According to the developers, the Multi-BFT mechanism maintains a balance between high transaction speed, decentralization, and consistency of node operation.
In addition, Theta uses the Aggregated Signature Gossip Scheme. The scheme is arranged so that each node collects signatures from neighboring nodes. As a result, the transmitted data volume is small, so the information reaches all nodes in the network with lightning speed. In addition, data transmission costs are also reduced.
Theta also enables users to create their own micropayment pools resistant to double-spend attacks and allows the counterparty to send off-chain transactions personally to the creator. Thus, viewers can, for example, pay for video content, and transactions are carried out off-chain, which significantly increases speed and reduces costs.
In addition, Theta supports EVM-compatible smart contracts. Theta smart contracts allow developers to create various decentralized applications on the native blockchain. These can be NFTs, DAOs, all kinds of decentralized finance applications, and so on. This means that Theta provides additional features for users and the actual transmission of video and data. Thanks to this, platforms connected to Theta get another tool for attracting users.
Theta developers strive to make their projects as flexible, customer-oriented, and innovative as possible. Theta plans to launch a metachain, the goal of which is to achieve a high level of scalability and provide lightning-fast block completion time. The metachain will consist of the Theta mainnet and an unlimited number of subchains. Anyone can use the Theta SDK to build and launch their own subchain. In addition, thanks to the inter-chain messaging channel, subchains connected to the mainchain are EVM-compatible. That is, developers and users of decentralized applications will be able to benefit from cross-chain asset transfers between networks such as Theta, Ethereum, Binance Smart Chain, Avalanche, and others.
Subchains will also have a fully customized dual-token model. The native TFUEL token will be used to pay transaction fees, the amount of which the developers have the right to determine independently. The THETA token will be used by developers to deposit collateral to gain access to the launch of the subchain but will not be used as a governance token for subchains. Instead, each subchain will have its own governance token corresponding to the TNT20 standard.
In addition, the developers also plan to implement the zk-rollup extension, which will allow subchains to achieve a high level of security and scalability.
Theta has a dual token model. The THETA token is a project governance token with a limited maximum supply of 1 billion. Users can stake THETA and become Guardians or Validators. The stakers ensure the network's security and earn TFUEL (the number of earnings depends on the stake amount and period). In addition, stakeholders also have voting power and can participate in project governance. Users wishing to launch a subchain will also need to stake THETA tokens.
The TFUEL token is used to pay transaction fees and has an unlimited maximum supply. The token is used to pay for Edge Nodes services and also to build smart contracts. Users can earn TFUEL by adding THETA tokens to the staking pool, launching Edge Nodes, or interacting with Theta.tv. Despite the unlimited supply, the token has a built-in deflationary model.
The Theta platform is designed to solve the main problems associated with the current sphere of video streaming. The platform aims to break monopolization, provide greater freedom to content makers and viewers, and provide first-class streaming quality and increased revenue. Theta continues to develop actively, although even at the current stage, it has strong support from global companies such as YouTube, Twitch, Samsung, SONY, and many others.