After two years of development, Litecoin (LTC) has finally launched the long-awaited Mimblewimble update and opened the door to more private online transactions.
Mimblewimble is integrated into Litecoin through the Mimblewimble Extension Block, also known as MWEB, which allows network users to participate in secret transactions. David Burkett, lead developer of Litecoin Foundation-sponsored MWEB, said the update improves Litecoin’s scalability as a fungible currency that can be used for daily transactions, employee salaries, and even real estate purchases.
Mimblewimble is a privacy-focused decentralized protocol that takes its name from a spell that first became popular in the Harry Potter series. The protocol has a privacy feature that allows users to hide transaction information. It also provides a framework for other blocks to improve the usability of their cryptocurrency.
Litecoin first started integrating with Mimblewimble in several Litecoin improvement proposals dated October 2019. The network launched its first Mimblewimble testnet in October 2020 after initial delays due to low community engagement. The testnet was also launched around the same time regulators in Europe, mainly Europol, sounded the alarm about privacy coins.
RELATED: Crypto policy advocacy group warns of ‘catastrophic’ austerity in new US bill
Privacy coins that promote anonymity and attempt to disguise transactions on digital ledgers are being explored around the world. Several exchanges dropped support for leading privacy currencies Monero (XMR), Zcash (ZEC), and Dash (DASH) in early 2021 at the height of the regulatory heat, Cointelegraph reports.
In addition to anonymity and private transactions, Mimblewimble technology places a strong emphasis on fungibility and scalability, key features currently lacking in many blockchains. The Litecoin Foundation believes that the integration of Mimblewimble will contribute to LTC’s status as “safe money” – a broad concept that refers to stable money that is less subject to easing and the impact of monetary policy.
Despite being one of the first cryptocurrencies to hit the market, Litecoin has struggled to stay relevant over the years. Currently, LTC is ranked 21st in the market value ranking with a total value of $7.5 billion.