NEAR Protocol is software that incentivizes computers to manage a platform built for developers to make decentralized applications (dapps). NEAR Protocol is unique since it falls under the category of a “sharded layer 1 blockchain.” Now, we will get a bit technical here so please, bear with us. Sharding is a horizontal scaling feature that works by dividing a blockchain node network into smaller portions called “shards.” Each shard is independent and has its data to process transactions in tandem with other shards. Therefore, the overall efficiency and throughput of the network increase.
NEAR Protocol believes sharding will solve the “blockchain trilemma” of creating a scalable, decentralized, and secure blockchain. Sharding is not necessarily unique to NEAR but what is unique is the team’s concept of dynamic re-sharding. This means the network will automatically adjust the number of shards based on user demand. This allows NEAR to reduce the average cost of network use without sacrificing high transaction throughput. NEAR Protocol transaction fees are much lower than other blockchains such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. For that reason, investors are buying the NEAR token as an investment for the future of this technology.
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