Solana is a blockchain platform and cryptocurrency that is designed to be highly scalable, secure and decentralized. It uses a unique “proof of history” consensus mechanism that combines proof of stake and proof of elapsed time. This allows it to process transactions very quickly – theoretically up to 700,000 per second.
Solana has very low fees compared to other major blockchains like Ethereum (ETH). Transactions cost a fraction of a cent on Solana. The native cryptocurrency of the platform is also called Solana (SOL). This is used to pay for transactions, staking and governance on the blockchain.
Solana aims to be a high-performance blockchain that can support decentralized applications at scale, including DeFi, NFTs, Web3 apps and more. It has seen very rapid growth and adoption since launching. Hence, the Solana price AUD also fluctuates.
As of October 2023, it is one of the top 10 largest cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. However, Solana has faced some criticism regarding its level of decentralization due to its architecture being optimized for speed and scalability.
Founders of Solana
Solana was founded in 2017 by Anatoly Yakovenko, a former Qualcomm senior staff engineer manager. Yakovenko had also worked as a software engineer at Dropbox before starting Solana. He was joined by his Qualcomm colleague Greg Fitzgerald in founding Solana Labs to develop the Solana blockchain protocol.
Additional former Qualcomm engineers also joined the Solana Labs team, bringing their experience in high-performance computing and wireless technology to help build Solana into a leading high-speed blockchain platform. Under Yakovenko’s leadership as CEO, Solana has become one of the top market-cap blockchain projects of high SOL price within just a few years of its public launch.
What Makes Solana Unique?
One of Solana’s most important innovations is its proof-of-history (PoH) consensus mechanism. This allows Solana to process transactions and execute smart contracts at lightning speeds that are significantly faster than other major blockchains. The protocol was designed to keep Solana price low despite massive scalability. Since launching in 2020,
Solana has rapidly risen to become a top 10 cryptocurrency by market capitalization, buoyed by developer activity, DeFi and NFT usage, and the SOL token’s 700% price gain from mid-2021 to September 2021. Solana reached an all-time high of $216 in September 2021.
While praised for its speed, Solana has suffered setbacks from repeated outages that have hampered reliability. Critics also accuse its tokenomics as favouring venture investors over the community. However, with its strong technical foundations and rapid growth, Solana continues to be considered a leading contender that can potentially rival Ethereum.