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New XC-20s are Polkadot-Native and Usable as ERC-20s on Moonriver

Boston, MA – January 14, 2022 – Moonbeam, the fully Ethereum-compatible smart contract platform on Polkadot, has released new functionality to enable native cross-chain token capabilities on Moonriver. This upgrade introduces XC-20s to Kusama, which are a new type of interoperable token that conform to the ERC-20 standard but are also Substrate-native assets. All fungible assets created in this format will be able to move to other Kusama parachains, and remote parachain tokens will be able to move to Moonriver as XC-20s. The first XC-20, xcKSM, is now live within Moonriver’s fully Ethereum-compatible environment, and can be created by transferring KSM from the Kusama Relay Chain. Once proven, the same functionality will be made available on Moonbeam.

Additionally, the team has opened an HRMP channel between Moonriver and Statemine, Kusama’s common good parachain, allowing assets to move between the parachains for the first time. Once finalized, it will be possible to move Statemine-based assets like RMRK to Moonriver.

The introduction of XC-20s is a first for the broader “Dotsama” ecosystem and opens the door to cross-chain interactions between parachains.

“We are at the beginning of a great shift from single-chain DApp architectures to multi-chain DApp architectures, but cross-chain interoperability still has many security challenges,” says Derek Yoo, Founder of Moonbeam. “Polkadot’s native XCM, which allows for highly secure cross chain interactions, is a game-changer. XC-20 is the first of many planned cross-chain features that leverage XCM. With these features, Moonbeam developers will be able to build native multi-chain applications from an EVM-based environment.”

The underlying technology that powers XC-20 based assets is called XCM (Cross-Consensus Messaging) which is uniquely made possible by the Polkadot architecture. Other chains have to use third-party bridges to move tokens between chains, whereas XCM allows parachains in the Polkadot ecosystem to exchange messages with the same security as the underlying network. In this way, any parachain built on Polkadot or Kusama is able to communicate with other parachains connected to the Relay Chain. Learn more about XCM on the Moonbeam documentation website.

The term ERC-20 refers to a technical fungible token standard and has been established as the technical standard for all smart contracts on Ethereum and Ethereum-compatible blockchains. Support for ERC-20 is one of the many ways that Moonriver makes it easier for developers to re-deploy existing projects to Kusama, and generally makes token creation much simpler. XC-20s are ERC-20 compatible, but also Substrate-native assets that build upon XCM (Cross Consensus Messaging) functionality from Polkadot and the the xTokens pallet created by the Acala team. XC-20s are recognizable by the “xc” prepended to the asset name (e.g., xcKSM).

About the Moonbeam Network

Moonbeam is an Ethereum-compatible smart contract platform on the Polkadot network that makes it easy to build natively interoperable applications. This Ethereum compatibility allows developers to deploy existing Solidity smart contracts and DApp frontends to Moonbeam with minimal changes. Like Moonriver, its sister parachain on Kusama, Moonbeam is expected to accumulate developer and user activity from the 80+ projects building DApps and protocols on the network. As a parachain on the Polkadot network, Moonbeam benefits from the shared security of the Polkadot Relay Chain and integrations with other chains that are connected to Polkadot. Learn more: https://moonbeam.network/.

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