What Is A Helium Hotspot? Glad you asked…..

Do YOU want to know more about Helium –  GLAD YOU ASKED! Helium is a decentralized blockchain-powered network for the Internet of Things (IoT) devices.

If you missed my explaination on IoT, you can find it HERE

In this ever decentralizing world we are currently living in, a lot of platforms, technologies, and services are converting over to systems that are open and decentralized as opposed to centralized proprietary ones. These Peer-to-Peer (P2P) networks are making it possible for the intro of blockchain networks. Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), as well as other digital cryptocurrencies have shown over the years how important that a decentralized transaction ledger can be. Helium (HNT) is a decentralized blockchain-powered network for the Internet of Things (IoT) devices. The main objective here behind the creation of this Helium network was to incentivize the creation of wireless networks that are both physical and decentralized.

Helium: Decentralized Wireless Network for IoT

The Helium network is a decentralized wireless network that allows devices to connect wirelessly to the internet anywhere around the world. This allows them to replicate themselves without depending on satellites’ location hardware or expensive cellular towers and/or plans.

There is a blockchain powering the Helium network that has a native protocol token it’s incentivizing a two-sided marketplace between both coverage providers and coverage consumers. In english, what this is doing is making wireless networks a more commodity-driven by competition while being available anywhere around the globe and also simultaneously at a cheaper price. Sound too good to be true? The Helium network has different applications across several different industries, being the first decentralized network in its category.

With its open-source and secure primitive, developers have the opportunity to build low-power, internet-connected devices at a much cheaper and a lot quicker rate.

Helium History and Team

The Helium Network was launched in July 2019. It has a main mission that allows low-powered wireless devices to communicate with each other and transmit data across its network of nodes. These nodes exist as Hotspots, which are a combination between a blockchain mining device and a wireless gateway.

Amir Haleem, Shawn Fanning, and Sean Carey co-founded Helium in 2013. The objective of the this network is to prepare IoT communications for the future. The Helium team has continued to identify inadequacies in current infrastructure since its launch and is still learning and bettering their network to this day.

Amir Haleem, a co-founder, has a background in the e-sports and gaming industry. Meanwhile, Fanning played a key role in the development of a music sharing service that became one of the first mainstream Peer-to-Peer internet services in the late 90s. You might have actually heard of it. The service is a little company called Napster. Finally, Carey held multiple development roles notably in Where (which is an advertising optimization firm), before joining the Helium team.

The Helium network team consists of experts with ample experience in radio and hardware, distributed systems, manufacturing, blockchain technologies, and Peer-to-Peer.

Key Components of the Helium Network

There are several components of the Helium (HNT) network that ensure that it carries out its duties seamlessly and without any hitch.

  • Proof-of-Coverage

Proo-of-Coverage (PoC) is an algorithm that Helium employs. Its job is to verify that the hotspots in the network are physically where they claim and that they are truthfully representing the wireless coverage for its location by the hotspot. With Proof-of-Coverage, the Helium Network and blockchain are able to leverage the unique properties provided by the radio frequency to produce proofs useful to the network and users of the network.

  • Proof-of-Location

The Helium network outlines a system that uses WHIP to interpret the physical geolocation of a device without requiring power-consuming and expensive satellite location hardware. Devices can make secure, immutable, and verifiable claims about their location at a particular time. And the blockchain is able to record that.

  • Helium Consensus Mechanism

The Helium network’s consensus protocol runs on certain principles.

Firstly, the Helium network permits Hotspots operating in line with Helium consensus rules and network specifications free participation in the network.

Secondly, the network provides no incentives for leveraging on factors such as cheap energy cost or the deployment of additional hardware in the same location.

Thirdly, the protocol should have the ability to withstand Byzantine failures in such a way that consensus is still reachable so far as participants are acting honestly. For this purpose, the Helium network is using HoneyBadgerBFT, a variant of BFT.

Finally, Hotspots lack the ability to censor, select or deselect transactions to be included on the block.

Other principles on which the Helium network’s consensus protocol is built include a high rate of confirmed transactions, as well as dependence on useful work.

  • WHIP

WHIP is an open-source, and standards-compliant wireless network protocol built for low-power devices over large areas. It operates on existing commodity radio chips available from dozens of manufacturers who have no proprietary technologies or modulation schemas required.

  • Helium DWN

Helium Decentralized Wire Network (DWN) provides wireless access to the internet for devices by way of multiple independent miners. It also specifies the Helium network and WHIP specifications by which participants on the network conform.

Routers pay networks of miners for transmitting data to and from the internet. In return, miners are rewarded with newly minted tokens for providing network coverage and delivering device data to the internet.

Helium Network Participants

There are three categories of participants on the Helium network.

Devices send and receive encrypted data from the internet using hardware compatible with WHIP. Data sent from Devices is fingerprinted, and those fingerprints are stored in the blockchain.

Miners provide Helium with network coverage via purpose-built hardware known as Hotspots. These hotspots provide a long-range bridge between devices and the internet. Users can join the Helium network as miners via the purchase or construction of a hotspot that conforms to WHIP. They also stake a token deposit in direct proportion to the density of other miners operating in the area.

Routers are internet apps that buy encrypted device data from Miners. They can pay several miners to obtain ample copies of a packet to geolocate a device without the help of satellite location hardware. This data is famous as Proof-of-Location in places where miners are plenty.

In addition, routers are the termination point for Device data encryption. They are also responsible for confirming to hotspots that device data reached the right location. Thus, the miner should be paid for the service.

Use of the Helium Network

The Helium network is already providing a decentralized connection for the Internet of Things (IoT). It also offers a similar service for the 5G cellular network offloading. Besides, it is responsible for the expansion of 5G service availability for IoT devices and smartphones operating in the US Band Citizens Radio Service (CBRS). Helium network hopes to collaborate with mobile network operators and mobile service wholesale whose aim is to augment their 5G networks.

Helium (HNT) Token

The HNT token is the native cryptocurrency of the Helium blockchain. The very first token appeared with the genesis block on July 29, 2019.

There are no provisions for pre-mining HNT. The token serves the needs of the two primary parties in the Helium blockchain ecosystem. Those are the Hotspot hosts and Network operators, as well as enterprises and developers using the Helium network.

Benefits Helium Brings to Its Users

The benefits of the Helium (HNT) blockchain are numerous.

Firstly, with traditional centralized telecom, the price of data continues to increase on a yearly basis. However, the Helium blockchain provides a decentralized format. It grows organically with the addition of more hotspots at a cheaper rate.

Secondly, Helium ensures that all communications on the blockchain have end-to-end encryption, making it the most suitable for sensitive information.

Further, sensors on the Helium blockchain unlike those on cellular chips help in conserving battery life. They could even last for several years.

Other benefits of the Helium blockchain include its ability to perform over wide ranges, as well as low operating costs.

 

 

F.A.Q.

What is Helium?

Helium (HNT) is a decentralized blockchain-powered network for the Internet of Things (IoT) devices.

 

What issues does Helium address?

Helium network helps devices to connect wirelessly to the internet anywhere in the world, and also replicate themselves without depending on satellites’ location hardware or costly cellular plans.

 

Who are the founders of Helium?

Helium blockchain is founded by three individuals: Amir Haleem, Shawn Fanning, and Sean Carey.

 

What are the key components of Helium Network?

The key components of Helium include Proof-of-Coverage, Proof-of-Location, WHIP, Helium consensus protocol, and Helium DWN.

 

What is Proof-of-Coverage?

Proof-of-Coverage is an algorithm that was created for Helium whose job is to verify that the hotspots in the network are physically situated where they claim and that they are truthfully representing the wireless coverage that is being created for its location by the hotspot.

 

What is WHIP?

WHIP is an open-source, and standards-compliant wireless network protocol built for low-power devices over large areas.

 

 

What are the key participants of the Helium Network?

The key participants of the Helium network include Devices, Miners, and Routers.

 

 

How is the Helium Network secured?

The Helium network is secured using a Proof-of-Coverage which rewards users for contributing to the mining and ensuring stability. The PoC is based on the HoneyBadgerBFT protocol that is designed for node communication when conditions become unreliable.

 

 

What is HNT token?

The HNT token is the native cryptocurrency of the Helium blockchain.

 

 

How to earn HNT?

HNT tokens are earned by running the Helium Hotspot. Helium distributes rewards to the hotspots which have earned them at the end of the epoch.

 

 

 

People-Powered Networks.

Start a Wireless Revolution

Powered by the Helium Blockchain, The People’s Network represents a paradigm shift for decentralized wireless infrastructure.

 


The Network is Live

The People’s Network is the world’s fastest growing wireless network ever.

Learn more about Helium and how to get a miner/hotspot for FREE!!

Mine.

A New Way to Mine Crypto

By deploying a simple device in your home or office, you can provide your city with miles of low-power network coverage for billions of devices and earn a new cryptocurrency, HNT.

Learn more about Helium and how to get a miner/hotspot for FREE!!

BYE BYE GPU MINING

Mining HNT with Hotspots is done via radio technology, not expensive or wasteful GPUs.

BUILD NETWORKS

Hotspots work together to form a new global wireless network and undertake ‘Proof-of-Coverage’.

CHOOSE YOUR HARDWARE

Hotspots are built by a variety of vendors to suit your needs.

Use.

Massive, Decentralized Connectivity

Hundreds of companies and thousands of developers are already building on The People’s Network, the world’s largest, and fastest growing LoRaWAN network.

Thousands of existing solutions, sensors, devices and gateways can be easily configured to run LongFi – a powerful blend of LoRaWAN and blockchain technologies.

Use the NetworkBuild with Helium Console

AN OPEN ALTERNATIVE

The People’s Network is built on Open Source technology and governed by an open alliance.

SCALABLE & AFFORDABLE

Say goodbye to expensive cell contracts. On Helium a sensor can cost cents to run a year.

LORAWAN-COMPATIBLE

Utilize thousands of existing sensors, chipsets and MCUs for streamlined development.

Get Started on Console 2.0 Today

After many months of work and testing based on community feedback, the team is excited to announce the official release of Console 2.0! The team not only worked on new features and capabilities, but also focused on making sure migration to Console 2.0 would be seamless for existing users.

Read more about Console 2.0 and how to get started here.

HELIUM IS USED BY:

Core Technologies.

The People’s Network is made possible through sophisticated, open-source technologies that aim to create a truly decentralized and trust-less model for building wireless infrastructure.

Tokens & Data Credits

The network uses two units of exchange: HNT, a new cryptocurrency, and Data Credits.

Proof-of-Coverage

Our novel proof-of-work algorithm enables Hotspots to be rewarded trustlessly.

Helium LongFi

LongFi combines the low-power, long-range LoRaWAN wireless protocol with the Helium Blockchain.

Our Investors.

Helium has raised equity funding from some of the most prominent Venture Capital (VC) firms in the world including Khosla Ventures, FirstMark Capital, GV (formerly Google Ventures), HSB/MunichRe Ventures, Union Square Ventures, Multicoin Capital, and others.

 

Conclusion

The Helium blockchain has witnessed rapid growth after witnessing its hotspots increase from less than 10,000 units in August 2020 to a few hundred thousand by the end of 2021. There is much work to do as this blockchain only has a presence in the United States and some parts of Western Europe. Asia presents a huge growth potential as hotspots have only begun surfacing in China. India, South East Asia, as well as Australia are other possible opportunities as there are no representations in those regions.

 

As you can see, we are at the very beginning of this monsoon that is a new technology positioned to sweep its way across the globe.

 

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