As the conversation about interoperability keeps changing, more and more investors and developers are looking at cross-chain blockchain networks and comparing Polkadot and Cosmos (ATOM). On the surface, these platforms look like they have a lot in common. But each one is different in small ways because of the way it was built.
Many blockchains that can work with each other can be found in the Web3 landscape. Concerns about scaling the number one smart contract network, Ethereum, have been raised by its high gas prices. In the debate about “Ethereum killers,” some of the newest blockchains that aim to fix the problems with legacy blockchains are discussed. Both Polkadot and Cosmos have had similar adoption curves and have a lot in common. Also, each of these platforms has a strong community of developers. So, if you’re one of the many investors who’s wondering, “How is Polkadot different from Cosmos?” keep reading!
In this article, “Polkadot vs. Cosmos,” we’ll compare two of the most popular smart contract blockchains, Polkadot and Cosmos. We’ll look at how these two networks are built and what technology they use. We also talk about the platforms’ native cryptocurrencies and development frameworks.
What is Polkadot?
Polkadot is a blockchain network that was made by the Web3 Foundation and Ethereum co-founder Dr. Gavin Wood in May 2020. It is very easy to use with other blockchain networks. It lets people send money and data across different blockchain networks that couldn’t do that before. Thanks to the use of parachains, Polkadot is also made to be very fast and scalable. Parachains are parallel blockchains that take computations off the main blockchain (Polkadot’s Relay chain) to improve efficiency and stop bottlenecking. The Relay chain also has a cross-chain bridge that lets Polkadot connect to other blockchains and databases.
Polkadot’s proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus mechanism depends on the native DOT token. Holders can check transactions and become validators by staking DOT. In exchange, validators can get a share of the transaction fees and the newly made DOT. Also, DOT is a token for running things. It gives the people who have it the right to vote on changes to the protocol.
Because parachains keep the Relay chain from having to do so much work, the Polkadot network can handle more than 166 transactions per second (TPS). This is a lot more than Ethereum’s 30 or so TPS and Bitcoin’s seven. As new parachains are sold at auction, the Polkadot network grows. The people who win the auction have to put up a certain amount of DOT as a bond for as long as 96 weeks. Also, the Polkadot network is set up so that as more parachains are added, it will get faster.
The consensus and transactions are handled by the Relay chain, while parachains are “application-specific blockchains” that have their own rules and features.
Relay Chain, Parachain, and Parathread
In the Polkadot ecosystem, the Relay chain connects every blockchain product and Dapps. Parachains are separate blockchains that operate at the same time as the Relay chain. Parathreads let parachains host multiple applications temporarily without having to hold an auction. Also, the security of the Relay chain is passed on to each parachain and parathread.
Kusama is a public blockchain network and pre-production environment on Polkadot that evokes real-world conditions. Even though Kusama is its own blockchain, projects can use it to test early versions of applications using the native KSM token before deploying them on Polkadot. Also, Kusama works with a flexible set of rules that give engineers a lot of room to finish their designs. The platform also looks like Polkadot’s architecture, with parachains, parathreads, and the Relay chain.
What is the Cosmos ATOM?
Cosmos is a customizable, interoperable, cross-chain blockchain network that is also called the “internet of blockchains.” The Swiss non-profit Interchain Foundation assisted Jae Kwon and Ethan Buchman make the Cosmos network in 2014. (ICF). Also, Cosmos offers open-source tools that can be used to build an ecosystem of blockchain networks (called “zones”) that can share data and value without any central control.
The Cosmos network is made up of three main parts. First, it’s up to the application layer to handle transactions and keep the network’s state up to date. Second, the networking layer makes it easier for zones to talk to each other across chains. Third, the consensus layer lets all the nodes agree on how the network is right now. The Cosmos ecosystem is made up of a set of open-source tools and protocols that link all of these layers together.
Each zone is linked by Cosmos Hub. Also, Cosmos Hub keeps a separate record of all the transactions in each zone. It is also protected by the native ATOM token, which is a key part of the tendermint proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus mechanism that keeps the network safe. Cosmos can also handle as many as 10,000 transactions per second (TPS).
Tendermint is the engine that makes the whole Cosmos machine work, and it has many different jobs to do.
First of all, it lets developers make interoperable and working blockchains quickly and easily. This makes it easier for developers who want to join the ecosystem to do so.
Using the Tendermint Byzantine Fault Tolerance (BFT) technique, a network of computers running the Cosmos software can keep the network running and secure, validate transactions, and add new blocks to the blockchain. This process is based on proof-of-stake (PoS), which means that validator nodes must stake ATOM to power the blockchain and vote on changes to the network.
In the Cosmos network, a node must be one of the top 100 nodes staking ATOM in order to become a validator.
Among Cosmos Hub’s products are the following
On the Interchain, users can trade digital assets with low transaction fees and fast confirmation.
Connect chains to other chains, like Bitcoin and Ethereum, using IBC links and decentralized bridges.
The hub could be used to store digital assets from more than one chain.
The IBC connects Cosmos (ATOM) Zones to the Cosmos (ATOM) Hub, so information can move quickly and cheaply—most transactions on Cosmos cost nothing.
All zones connected to the Cosmos Hub are interoperable, which means that any independent dapp, validator, or consensus mechanism can talk to any other zone.
Cosmos (ATOM) SDK
The Cosmos SDK (software development kit) application layer gives developers easy-to-use open-source tools for making their own blockchain networks on Cosmos. It comes with pre-made templates and custom modules that take away a lot of the work that needs to be done during development. Also, it lets developers launch projects on the Cosmos testnet and collects feedback before launching on the public mainnet.
Through inter-blockchain communication (IBC), which is made possible by the Cosmos SDK, developers can connect blockchain protocols to the Cosmos mainnet. This will bring in more money and users. Also, the Cosmos SDK lets developers turn popular programming languages like Java and C++ into a language that works with Cosmos.
What’s the Difference Between Polkadot (DOT) and Cosmos (ATOM)?
Both Polkadot and Cosmos are cross-chain networks that work well with each other. People frequently refer to Polkadot as “the blockchain of blockchains,” and Cosmos as “the internet of blockchains.” Both networks let developers make their own blockchain networks and make it easy for new projects to get started. Also, the security of both networks comes from a consensus mechanism based on Proof of Stake (PoS) and a top-tier native cryptocurrency.
According to Coinmarketcap, and at the time of writing, the Cosmos (ATOM) trades at around $10.87 and is down about 75% from its all-time high of $44.45 in January 2022. Polkadot (DOT) is trading at around $8.49, down almost 85% from its all-time high of $54.98 in November 2021. Furthermore, DOT has a market cap of $9.3 billion, whereas ATOM has a market cap of 3.1 billion.
One big difference between Polkadot and Cosmos is that Polkadot has a single security system for the whole network. Independent blockchains that connect to Cosmos Hub don’t all have the same level of security, but each Polkadot parachain has the same level of security as the Relay chain. This shared security model helps developers because it makes it easy for them to get projects up and running quickly and safely.
Cosmos developers are in charge of setting up their own security measures. This gives developers more freedom, but it also means they have to think about more things. Cosmos is quickly catching up to Polkadot. Polkadot has a bigger development community, more unique accounts, and many successful projects built on top of it.
Even so, both platforms want to promote and encourage the creation of decentralized apps (dapps).
Which is best Polkadot (DOT) or Cosmos (ATOM) – Summary
Cosmos Atom does three things
With the help of Tendermint BFT and the Cosmos SDK, it’s easy for developers
to add their apps to a blockchain network. A world where blockchains live
together in peace!
Blockchains can transfer wealth while keeping sovereignty using the IBC.
Cosmos apps can grow without having to pay huge network fees.
Both Polkadot and Cosmos try to bring the blockchain
ecosystem together by giving people a set of tools that can be used to make
their own blockchain networks. Even though both networks have grown very quickly,
Polkadot seems to be the one that has been around the longest. Also, Polkadot’s
parachains use a shared security model, while Cosmos zones’ transactions are
based on trust between the sending and receiving parties and have their own
Even though they are different, both platforms want to offer
a faster, cheaper, and more scalable alternative to Ethereum, which is the most
popular smart contract blockchain right now. Each has a different ecosystem of
decentralized protocols and services that are building the Web3 landscape from
the ground up. Also, both Cosmos and Polkadot help cut down on the blockchain
industry’s carbon footprint by using PoS consensus instead of the
energy-intensive PoW consensus. After reading this article, you should
have a good idea of the main differences between these two leading cross-chain