Blockstream Announces Lightning Network-Powered Satellite API Beta for Data Broadcast


In December, Blockstream had revealed plans to build a lightning-powered satellite API that will allow users to broadcast data through their satellite network.

The blockchain tech firm has made true its promises as it has announced a beta version of Blockstream API, which they expect to become world-s first bitcoin-powered satellite service.

Understanding Blockchain Satellite API

The Blockchain Satellite API is designed to offer developers an easy-to-use platform to submit their messages for broadcast. According to Blockstream, the API supports secure messaging broadcasting, global podcast, and alternative blockchains.

That benefit was for developers. The Blockstream Satellite API also offers benefits for non-developers, providing them an easy-to-use platform where they can submit simple messages through the Blockstream website, and enjoy Lightning payment support.

On the requirements, Blockstream explained that:

“Thanks to our Phase 2 expansion, messages can be received by the vast majority of the world’s population. All that is needed to receive a broadcast is a satellite dish (a TV satellite dish will suffice), a few low-cost components, and a computer. Broadcasts can be received anywhere with a line of sight to one of our four geosynchronous satellites, completely free of charge.”

How Blockstream Satellite API Works

Currently, the Blockstream Satellite is for broadcast only, and the fee for sending data varies depending on the bytes sent. According to the company, when there’s heavy traffic, a fee market is created as is the case with processing of transactions in bitcoin blocks.

But Blockstream stresses that the message sent has to be limited so as to facilitate its quick transmission. On this matter, they noted that:

“The maximum message size is limited to ensure that a message can be transmitted within ten seconds if it is submitted with the highest current bid per byte.”

Developers who intend to use the portal are expected to be responsible for their own fragmentation, encryption, and reassembly of any large message, depending on the needs of their application.

Levels of Privacy

Blockstream Satellite API offers several privacy features to guarantee the high level of privacy for broadcasters.

The portal supports encryption, meaning that developers can easily create public key encryption and choose who to distribute the keys to – in this case the recipients.

Data being on the Blockstream Satellite is also sent out-of-band, which further improves the privacy that’s achieved by cryptographic techniques developed these days. The Lightning Network, on the other hand, disconnects payment source, guaranteeing more privacy.

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