Ripple’s XRP Ledger Gets a Sidechain That Works with Ethereum

Blockchain software company Peersyst announced that they are launching an Ethereum-compatible sidechain on the XRP Ledger’s developer network — a separate network used to test new technologies. XRPL’s sidechain is now live, but it remains in the early phase. It uses Solidity—the coding language used to program applications and smart contracts on Ethereum as well other EVM blockchains like Avalanche.

This launch comes after a series of moves by Ripple that have caused controversy in the cryptocurrency community. In the past year, they’ve been accused of centralising their entire system through a series of changes and updates that would make it impossible for anyone other than them to create alternative networks and operate on them.

The launch of this new protocol is an attempt by Ripple to become more inclusive to attract more developers. The company has so far been unwilling to relinquish control over its products and new projects, but this move marks a shift in strategy. Additionally, bringing Ethereum smart contracts to the XRPL could lower hurdles for developers building DeFi apps with cross-chain interoperability.

Ripple is intent on doing more than just facilitating Ethereum smart contracts. It launched its own NFT protocol for the XRPL, the XLS-20, on its developer networks back in January. The XLS-20 technology, which allows developers to launch NFTs onto its main network, was set to launch on September 13 but is not yet live.

For those seeking to move assets between the XRPL EVM sidechain and its main ledger, a bridge between the networks has been launched to allow for the seamless movement of assets and is in the early stages. The XRPL Bridge is a standalone module that provides network interoperability between the Ethereum Mainnet and XRPL sidechain.

The bridge is intended to provide liquidity to users of both chains while facilitating easy migration of assets between the two networks. With this release, XRPL is proud to provide a cost-effective solution for users interested in using blockchain technology to transfer value or tokens freely between Ethereum’s main network and XRPL’s EVM sidechain.

Wouldn’t it be great to make XRPL’s main network EVM-compatible? Ripple Software Engineer Mayukha Vadari argues in a blog post that doing so could undermine efficiency, scalability, and security. Vadari shared that the second phase of the EVM sidechain project will begin early next year, and phase three will bring the EVM blockchain to XRPL’s main network at an undetermined date.

Though there are certainly some flaws in the XRP Ledger, its ability to process transactions faster than Ethereum could prove beneficial down the line. Simply put, it will be easier to adapt the Ethereum platform to accept the processing of information on the XRP Ledger rather than trying to adjust the latter. In any case, it’s clear that Ripple is looking for ways to strengthen its product as the competition begins to increase in specific sectors of the blockchain industry.

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