Immutable X is a layer-2 scaling solution for NFTs on Ethereum, which enables instant trade confirmation, near-zero gas fees for minting and trading NFTs. It uses Zero-Knowledge Rollup to achieve scalability, which can facilitate up to 9,000 transactions per second.
IMX is an ERC-20 utility and governance token used to pay for transaction fees and incentivize users and developers on Immutable X. Token holders can earn rewards through staking and participating in the platform's governance.
Layer 2 ZK-Rollup
According to its whitepaper, Immutable X builds the solution over layer 2 (L2) for NFTs on Ethereum technology. Layer 2 is a secondary framework called off-chain that functions as an extra layer. The off-chain layer ensures that while the central layer, or layer 1, provides security, the L2 offers better speed. The platform states that the dominance and increase in activity of Ethereum have resulted in network congestion and a low transaction speed. Thereby Immutable X makes use of Layer-2, built on top of the existing blockchain (Layer-1), delivering both scaling and transaction speed. For instance, blockchain games require a faster transaction time, and L2 built on top of Ethereum solves this issue.
In a broader sense, Immutable X uses a roll-up technology offered by StarkWare. Roll-ups are systems that execute transactions outside the L1 layer. As a result, these roll-ups help lower user fees, allowing more people to participate and speeding up transaction processing.
Consequently, this protocol uses the zero-knowledge (zk) roll-up. In simpler terms, the zk protocol authenticates data without exchanging passwords but is secure at the same time. Further, zk allows for verifying a block faster and cheaper as less data is supplied. For example, the zk protocol represents accounts as an index rather than an address, reducing the transaction from 32 to 4 bytes. Thus the roll-up of Immutable X seeks to enable over 9,000 NFT transfers, swaps, and mints every second, which exceeds the scaling requirements of major NFT projects.
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Using protocol standards such as REST API (representational state transfer application programming interface), the network enables developers to build NFT applications more efficiently. Immutable X translates complex blockchain exchanges to more direct interactions using REST API, which acts as a bridge between users and the resources or web services they require. The REST API intends to provide a better upgrade to existing blockchains. Also, new participants in the field, such as existing gaming and content businesses, can develop better initiatives quicker without interacting directly with smart contracts. Smart contracts are just like regular contracts; however, instead of being drafted on paper, these contracts run in protocols on a blockchain.
Robbie Fergusen, Alex Connolly and James Fergusen cofounded the Immutable X protocol. The platform was launched by the NFT technology company Immutable in 2018. The company has also developed and published NFT gaming projects such as Guild of Guardians and Gods Unchained. The team includes 100 members from various finance, fintech, and blockchain backgrounds. In addition, multiple companies, including Coinbase, back Immutable’s projects.