The team of Ethorse, a decentralized application for the pari-mutuel betting on the price of cryptocurrencies has provided a long-awaited update on the current status of the application. Of chief importance, the team is currently seeking a new solution to smooth network bottlenecks the Ethorse app is currently experiencing. Among other plans, the team is looking to improve mobile and add more coins to bet on.
The Ethorse team said: “Recently, races have been paused due to severe congestion on the Ethereum network. We haven’t been able to receive prices on blockchain because of the congestion and races were going in to refund state despite the high fees we have been spending (around 1 ETH a day). Before we paused, we had some races with a pool size around 10 ETH. Such interest even during these times shows huge potential for the Ethorse dApp. We are hoping this will be resolved soon so the races can run uninterrupted.”
The Oracle solution used to fetch price and automate races has been the main bottleneck for the past few weeks according to the team. They are now working on exploring several alternate solutions to overcome issues caused by relying exclusively on Oraclize.
This is an initiative to reduce the number of refunded races as much as possible. There are several Oracle services other than Oraclize that are currently being developed. The Ethorse team has been experimenting with the following services over the past few days:
- TownCrier – is a service that serves as a decentralized oracle which offers features similar to Oraclize. Unfortunately, TownCrier does not offer scheduled calls. Scheduled Oraclize calls have helped Ethorse automate the app to a great extent.
- ChainLink – is an Oracle solution that Ethorse is eagerly looking out for. They have a secure method as well as a distributed way of fetching the results from an API endpoint. This reduces the central point of failure to a great extent. Also, they claim to handle scalability issues caused by Ethereum network. Considering the above-mentioned features and the off-chain capability of ChainLink, its inception into Ethereum mainnet would be very useful for Ethorse. The team is going to use their services on the Kovan Network.
- Aeternity -the data availability and advanced data formatting provided by Aeternity could be very useful in reducing the number of queries. This would improve the time, cost and reliability of fetching data. They are expected to come out with a mainnet solution by the end of June 2018.
Other than these solutions, the team is also exploring Plasma, Channels, and Sidechains. They have also begun interacting with teams of ConsenSys Oracle, GoChain, and others. Though the current situation with the network is not looking good for dApps, with the above solutions, the future looks very bright for greater performance and user experience.
While waiting for these solutions, the Ethorse team has decided on an in-house implementation of an oracle which runs on its web server and acts as a backup to the existing Oraclize methods. Oraclize is given priority for fetching the results which is indeed the best method to get untampered data with TLSNotary proof. There are instances when Oraclize callbacks are either delayed or lost in the re-org. In these cases, the team has given a slack time up to 30 minutes for the callback to get back. If prices don’t arrive even after the slack time, the backup functionality will kick in. In the fallback method to fetch prices, the team will use a secure TLS GET method to fetch the prices. The prices fetched through the fallback mechanism will be displayed on a portal with a timestamp so that users can cross verify it with Coinmarketcap. The Ethorse team will be releasing this after meticulous testing over the next few weeks. Until then Ethorse will continue to run the races on varying frequency depending on the network quality at the time.
As described above, this is one of the top priorities of the project. The team wants to have a have a temporary solution (their own oracle) to keep the races running, research oracle solutions for long-term (Chainlink/Plasma/Sidechains) and implement them immediately when they are ready, to improve the dApp quality irrespective of the Ethereum network state.
Automated Seeding (Q2-Q3)
Seeding races have proven to be very successful in increasing user participation. The team has made significant progress on automating seeding, which is currently under test. This will be rolled out soon. Ethorse will also be increasing the seed as the user bets increase. This will encourage users to bet more and increase the volume.
Exchange Listings (Q2-Q3)
The team promised to get HORSE token listed on at least one high volume non-DEX exchange by the end of Q2. Exchange listing will bring a lot of attention to Ethorse product and will bring on new users to try the dApp. First, the team wants to make sure the dApp is ready for that. Due to the technical challenges mentioned, unfortunately, this had been delayed. However, the team says they are very confident about doing this by the end of June or early July 2018. Ethorse has allocated a considerable amount of funds from their crowdsale for this and has started reaching out to some exchanges.
Dividends Portal (Q2)
A portal to claim dividends will be developed by the end of Q2. This is where users will be able to claim dividends similar to a claim on winnings from a race. Dividend claiming periods will begin on July 17, 2018, during which all the tokens transfers will be disabled for a week.
Improvements to the UI/UX (Q3)
The team will implement ideas to significantly improve the user experience such as a visualization of the race progress. Developers are prioritizing them based on user interest and the ease of implementation.
Price Source (Q3)
Once the Oracle related updates are made, the team will move from using Coinmarketcap to its own price index that is based on data pulled directly from multiple exchanges and aggregated.
Voting Platform (Q3)
A voting portal will be developed where HORSE token holders can vote on the important decisions for the project.
Adding More Coins to the Race (Q3)
Ethorse is planning to add more large volume coins to the races including BCH, XRP, EOS, etc. There will be different race categories with a variety of coins. This along with more game types and increased frequency will enable the dApp to entertain users 24×7.
Mobile Support (Q3)
Currently, the dApp works to a certain extent on Cipher browser for mobile. However, Ethorse will be releasing updates to make it extremely smooth to be used on Cipher. Ethorse will be providing support to other mobile platforms as well.
The team also said they will continue to increase marketing efforts and add more functionality to the dApp during Q4 2018 and in 2019. The team notes that the roadmap is subject to reprioritization based on several variables including traction, community feedback, new technology or partnerships that they will keep exploring.