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Cardano’s Alonzo testnet: UTXO model combines all the good stuff from both Bitcoin & Ethereum

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The last few weeks and months have been very hectic for the Cardano community. Back on the 1 March, its latest mainnet upgrade, ‘Mary,’ went live, transforming Cardano into a multi-asset network like Ethereum. Corresponding to the same, Cardano’s native token ADA has also been surging on the price charts lately, with the altcoin hitting an ATH over a week ago before corrections eventually set in.

However, it would seem that Cardano isn’t done with its set of developments, with its developers now working towards the Alonzo hard fork, an upgrade that will bring smart contracts to the network. The roadmap for the same was recently expanded upon by IOHK’s Charles Hoskinson, Founder of Cardano, on the latest episode of Cardano360.

According to Hoskinson, Alonzo will involve taking the “trailblazing” Extended UTXO Model that “combines all the good stuff from both Bitcoin and Ethereum,” adding it all in, and putting the “beautiful” Plutus platform on top of Cardano. This will be a process that will go on for a few months, however, with the date for the HFC event preceded by quite a few other steps.

For starters, it will be integrated into the Ledger and code to get a CLI, with a lot of alpha partners being brought in for the same. This will be followed by the release of Alonzo testnet by the end of April or start of May, which will be when people will be able to write smart contracts and deploy them on Cardano.

The launch of the testnet will be succeeded by stress tests done by a set of cohorts and ‘Plutus pioneers.’ This will go on for a month or so following which, if everything is working fine, Cardano will be feature-frozen by the end of June. After that, a minimum of 4 weeks will be assigned to partners such as exchanges and wallet operators to test, upgrade, and modernize for Alonzo. Only then will the hard fork happen.

At the moment, while the timelines have been agreed upon, no date has been set. However, according to Hoskinson, the team remains confident about the pace of development, with Alonzo tentatively scheduled for some time toward the end of July. The date for the same will be confirmed by the end of April, he added.

Understandably, Hoskinson’s release of the roadmap was welcomed by many in the community. However, at the time of writing, it was still too early to determine whether ADA would see a bounce in value thanks to the same. If history is any evidence, there is a greater probability of the altcoin hiking as the hard fork looms closer in the summer.


Jibin Mathew George is Editor-in-Chief at AMBCrypto. A domain expert in International Relations (European Politics), he has always been a believer in the unlimited possibilities afforded by blockchain and by extension, cryptocurrencies. As someone who has been watching and writing about this space for over 5 years now, Jibin has closely tracked the emergence of cryptos and digital assets as a separate asset class in portfolios world over. A lawyer by training, he previously contributed to the News and Research desk of Diplomacy & Beyond Plus. Before his stint at D&B, he was Editor at ED Times. Jibin also takes a great interest in politics, especially the corresponding effect political decisions and fiscal policy have on the world of finance, with a special focus on cryptocurrencies.
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