About Stellar (XLM)
Founded in 2014, Stellar is a blockchain payment protocol intended to be used for global remittance purposes and a direct competitor to the Ripple protocol.
Stellar aims to seamlessly connect people, banks, and payment processors while allowing for reliable, fast and cheap transactions. In our current financial system it can be very costly and inconvenient to send money between bank accounts to other countries.
Their setup seeks to change that by allowing people all over the world to easily send money across borders. Their platform can send confirmed payments in as little as 3-5 seconds. Their chain also has excellent scalability with the capabilities to process over 1,000 transactions per second.
Tempo Money Transfers and Parkway projects are already being powered by Stellar's project. The native currency for the Stellar network are called “Lumens”. These native assets are required partially as an anti-spam measure. Each transaction passed through the network will require a tiny payment to be settled. These can also sometimes act as a bridge for currency exchanges where liquidity is limited.
Distributed Exchange and Remittance
The Stellar ecosystem does not just support cryptocurrency. Their decentralized platform also allows for cross country remittance in different fiat currencies. While you may be a cryptocurrency enthusiast this might not help your brother who has no idea how to use these new digital assets.
Instead, you can send a cryptocurrency using their multi-currency exchange, but your brother will be able to receive the money you send in whatever his home country's currency is whether you need to send US dollars, Euros or any other world currency Stellar plans to make this process simple and fair for everyone.
This set-up will allow for low cost remittance for anyone in the world. A service for the under banked that makes up a huge portion of the finance industry. The need for this service is especially large in smaller developing countries.
Many applications require the use of micro payments. Cryptocurrencies are the perfect solution for this with one caveat. The fees and transaction speed of previous coins like Bitcoin were not up to par. The Stellar system can easily support a large quantity of micro payments with almost no fees.
Stellar allows for many services to operate on the blockchain which may not have had the capabilities to do so before. This will be particularly useful in the future for integration with The Internet Of Things which is a connection portal for machines. These AIs will be able to transact with each other and micro payments will be required for them to operate efficiently and at low cost.
Reduced Infrastructure For Remittance Partners
The Stellar network allows for financial services operates to expand upon their current offerings. Their platform allows these remittance start-ups to expand their business without the crushing overhead that would normally be required allowing them to bring banking to farther reaching places where it otherwise would not be practical or cost effective.
The project also maintains an array of APIs to help developers easily integrate the Stellar service into their own projects. This not only includes guides for helping these developers get started, but the APIs are also written in familiar languages including Python, Java, C# and Ruby for easing these providers into the blockchain.
Stellar has two main objectives for 2018,
1 – SDEX (Stellar Decentralized Exchange) to enable on-chain, protocol-level trades for any Stellar token. SDEX features will include day one trading of any Stellar token, atomic pathfinding to discover the cheapest rates between any two assets, low trading fees and end-user control of secret keys
2 – Implementation of Lightning Network (LN). Stellar's expects LN to have a positive effect on Stellar’s long-term scalability and security.
Stellar's other objectives better brand communication and technical documentation, improvement to API and surrounding SDKs and making nodes more reliable and self sufficient.