Filecoin (FIL), a decentralized file sharing platform, will launch its mainnet today amidst positive sentiments from the crypto community. In preparation for FIL's launch, two major crypto exchanges – Kraken and Winklevoss-backed Gemini – have announced the launch of deposits and withdrawals features for the token, a new trend in the crypto space.
The six-year wait for the Protocol Labs built distributed file-sharing system mainnet launch is finally here. According to the developers, the mainnet is expected to launch at block number 148,888, which will be mined today at around 3:00 UTC; the last block mined at publication was 148,346.
The crypto world has been a buzz on the Filecoin project since Juan Benet, the founder, launched the first whitepaper for the Filecoin project in the summer of 2014. The launch today marks one of the most anticipated blockchain mainnet release in the crypto ecosystem yet. As a result, some of the top crypto exchanges are already prepared for the launch – the first action of its kind.
Gemini and Kraken crypto exchange announced they are ready for deposits and withdrawals for FIL tokens starting October 15. The former exchange announced trading of the token will start shortly after listing and will also provide custodial services. Kraken announced FIL trading would start as soon as the mainnet goes live. File will be paired with the dollar (FIL/USD), euro (FIL/EUR), Bitcoin (FIL/BTC), and Ether (FIL/ETH).
Huobi also announced plans to launch trading on FIL token in the near future.
The exchanges did not explain the radical and new method of listing Filecoin (FIL) before its mainnet. It remains unclear if this was a special pass for FIL or a process that will kick into the future. Although, earlier this year, Gemini was in talks with the NYDFS to allow FIL custody and trading. Jeremy Welch, Vice President of Product at Kraken, stated the exchange was not moving from its traditional listing methods claiming:
“We have a robust review framework that examines efforts to develop crypto services and goes through a rigorous compliance, legal and security process.”
Filecoin is a distributed file-sharing system built on the Inter-Planetary File System (IPFS), a kind of decentralized internet, allowing users to buy and sell unused storage on their devices. During the 2017 crypto bull run, the coin raised over $200 million in an initial coin offering (ICO), which lasted less than half an hour.
After a couple of delays on the launch of the mainnet, including this March, FIL is finally ready to launch its mainnet. On August 24, the platform launched its first incentivized testnet that allowed users to earn real FIL tokens in preparation for the big October 15 launch. Muneeb Ali, the CEO of Blockstack, an investor in Filecoin, further commented on a successful testnet completed in China, stating,
“Roughly $100M of storage hardware is humming on the testnet. What seemed like a pipe dream during Y- Combinator (YC) is now inching closer to reality. Buying hardware and converting it directly to crypto is key here.”