Groestlcoin (GRS) is a rather strange sounding cryptocurrency that has been receiving quite a bit of interest lately.
It was launched back in March of 2014 as a proof-of-work coin just like Bitcoin, and like Bitcoin it was created as a payment and transactional cryptocurrency. It boasts having almost zero fees, the coin is semi-anonymous, and it is one of a few coins that remains ASIC-resistant.
However, can the coin compete with some of its newer rivals?
In this Groestlcoin review I will give you what you need to know about the project’s technology, development and mining. I will also take a look at the long term growth potential of the GRS token and whether it could develop wider use cases and adoption.
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Because of these unique attributes Groestlcoin was able to achieve several important “firsts” in the cryptocurrency ecosystem. It was the first coin to implement Segregated Witness and it was also the first to perform a Lightning Network transaction on the mainnet. That’s partially because the Groestlcoin development team has been active and hardworking since day 1, releasing major development updates every 3 months like clockwork.
Groestlcoin compared. Image via docroid
The developers have also created a wallet called Samourai that allows for anonymous Groestlcoin transactions. The wallet was created with support for Tor and VPN, it doesn’t recycle addresses, and has on-board AES-256 encryption. There’s also a stealth mode to the mobile application that causes it to disappear from your phone’s app list, launcher and home screen.
In addition to the Samourai wallet you’ll find a wallet for nearly any platform you could want. There are desktop wallets for Windows, Linux and OSX. There are mobile wallets for Android, iOS and Blackberry. And there are web based and ChromeOS wallets. For those who like using the same wallet on several platforms there’s the GroeslPay wallet.
Groestlcoin is also very proud of the fact that its transactions are nearly free. You can send 10,000 GRS and the cost will be far less than a penny ($0.00007 to $0.0003 as a matter of fact). The transaction cost varies based on the wallet you’re using, with the cheapest transactions coming from the Core Groestlcoin wallet.
When it comes to the hashing algorithm, the coin uses the Grøstl-512 mining algorithm, which is where it got its name. It is a less complex algorithm than Bitcoin’s SHA-256. This means that it can still be mined on GPUs which makes it easier for home miners.
Groestlcoin uses two rounds of pure Grøstl-512 which makes it ASIC resistant. Currently, there are no ASICs that are in production to mine it. Apart from the benefits that this has for GPU miners, it also means that the coin is relatively more decentralised than its larger Bitcoin cousin.
The Groestlcoin developers have also created some simplified mining software which makes it easier for the community to mine GRS with their CPU / GPU. This is the Groestlcoin easyminer that was coded from the ground up and it has a number of useful features. You can follow these instructions if you want to set up the software on your PC.
Groestlcoin began with a mining reward of 512 GRS per block, with a halving occurring every week. That halving occurred until the block reward got to 5 GRS per block, which is where it is now and where it will stay until all GRS have been discovered.
There is a maximum supply of 105 million GRS and so far just over 72 million are in circulation. Groestlcoin has 1 MB blocks and block times of just 1 minute. This gives it 80 transactions per second, and the developers have said they will increase the block size if more transactions per second are needed.
Groestlcoin was launched on March 22, 2014 by an anonymous developer with the username Gruve_P on the Bitcointalk forum. Since that time the team has grown to include over 20 dedicated individuals from all over the world. The team members remain anonymous, with most sharing only their first name and country of origin.
Some of anonymous Groestlcoin Team Members
While that might raise a red flag for some cryptocurrency projects, that hasn’t been the case for the Groestlcoin team. The fact that they have consistently released development updates every three months has given the team acceptance and trust from the cryptocurrency community.
That dedication is also what allowed Groestlcoin to be the first to implement SegWit and the first to conduct a mainnet transaction on the Lightning Network. More quick and impressive developments can be expected in the future too.
The Groestlcoin Community
Community involvement is often a potent ingredient in the adoption of a cryptocurrency.
The Groestlcoin is quite an active and involved one. For example, there have been many calls for rebranding as the community doesn’t feel a cryptocurrency with such a strange name can enjoy widespread adoption, but so far it doesn’t look like any name-change is forthcoming.
Taking a closer look at the size of this community, they have over 38,000 Twitter followers, which isn’t bad and over 8,000 Facebook page likes, which is pretty large for a crypto project since Facebook isn’t really the platform for following cryptocurrency.
The platform that is for following cryptocurrency is Reddit, and you can see the enthusiasm for Groestlcoin when you look at the sub-Reddit for the project as it has over 100,000 followers. There are daily posts and loads of comments and at any time there will be several thousand followers online.
The GRS Token
Not surprising given the cryptocurrency markets, the price of GRS has been on a rollercoaster ever since its introduction in 2014. In fact, in a space known for volatility, GRS is far more volatile that most cryptocurrencies.
Everything was fairly calm in the early years, with the price of one GRS hovering between $0.002 and $0.003 until the beginning of 2017. That’s when the coin first broke out and volatility became the norm.
From early 2017 until July 13 the price went from $0.001 to a high of $0.41 before crashing. Over the next three months price declined steadily to reach $0.08 by October 22. And then it took off higher once again, reaching $0.85 in just 9 days! That spike came as cryptocurrency investors became increasingly interested in ASIC-resistant coins.
Price pulled back modestly in November, but then got caught up in the fever surrounding cryptocurrencies at the end of 2017, which took it to an all-time high of $2.69 on December 21, 2017.
During the 2018 bear market in cryptocurrencies GRS remained in fairly good standing, and even rallied in April and May. However, by February 2019 the price briefly touched levels below $0.20.
More recently price is seeing another jump, going from $0.25 on March 10, 2019 to $0.74 on March 11, 2019 after the Groestlcoin team announced the release of a GRS Mastercard debit card that can be used for purchases, or withdrawals at ATMs. Price has rapidly come off those highs, and as of March 17, 2019 it is at $0.416770.
GroestlPay mobile wallet features and benefits. Image Source
As mentioned earlier the Samourai wallet is a great place to store Groestlcoin, as is the GroestlPay wallet. One of the great things about Groestlcoin is you’ll find a wallet for nearly any platform you could want.
If you feel ready to buy some GRS you can find it on Upbit, Binance, and Bittrex and the liquidity on these exchanges is quite substantial. It’s also available on a number of other exchanges, but trading volumes are quite small on these.
Of course, if you have a reasonably powerful computer on you then you can always fire up the easyminer and start hashing for some GRS. Even with added competition the developers claim that mining GRS with a CPU / GPU is still profitable.
There is one great rule of thumb that you can use in order to determine how much development work is being done on a project. This is to take a look into the project’s GitHub repositories and see how much code has been pushed.
Moreover, given that Groestlcoin is an open-source project, their GitHub is fully public which makes it easy for the community to view the code. I decided to jump into their repositories and take a look at the number of commits they have pushed into their core, electrum and lightning repos.
Commits over past 12 months for chosen repositories
As you can see above, there has been extensive activity in these repositories. These are also only a small selection of the countless other repositories of the project. These are more commits than we have seen for a number of the newer coins that completed ICOs in the past 2 years.
As a point of comparison, Groestlcoin ranks 47 in commits to their core repo when compared to other projects. This places them above the likes of other privacy coins such as Monero (XMR) and Zcash (ZEC).
So, all together a very active project with a great deal of development taking place. This is perhaps understandable when placed in the context of their pretty extensive roadmap.
The Groestlcoin team keeps a pretty extensive roadmap with a detailed list of features and integrations that are due to be implemented. For example, below are just some of the upcoming features that they hope to releasing this year.
Upcoming features for 2019
Whether the developers will be able to meet these timelines I cannot be certain of. However, if you are to take a look into the updates that they have pushed over the past 5 years, they have broadly been in line with the Roadmap timeline.
There are also a number of other features that they have put on their 2019 Roadmap although these have not been given a specific timeline. The team also has a list of features and functions that they have placed in their development wish list.
Some of the most interesting of these include the likes of confidential transactions, Schorr signatures and atomic swaps. Confidential transactions will increase the privacy of the coin whereas Schnorr signatures will make these transactions more efficient. The off-chain atomic swaps will allow you to exchange GRS for other coins such as Bitcoin etc.
So, it seems as if there is a great deal that we can look forward to over coming year. Groestlcoin has also supplied a handy development progress page that you can use to monitor the stages of completion for the various updates that I have mentioned above.
While it may not be in the top 100 cryptocurrencies, Groestlcoin has a solid history of development, and the team is working towards improving on Bitcoin and making a better peer-to-peer payment system.
The improvements so far include the nearly fee-less transactions of Groestlcoin, the continuing ASIC-resistance, and the continuing regular development to keep the cryptocurrency at the forefront of advancing blockchain technology.
One thing possibly holding the project back is its name, which isn’t user-friendly. If the team decided to re-brand and begin a marketing campaign it could be just what the project needs to catapult it into the top 100 cryptocurrencies.
This is especially true since they launched their Mastercard debit card, as this type of integration with the traditional financial systems is something needed for mainstream adoption. It’s just another sign of Groestlcoin being a first-mover.
Time will tell if they are able to capitalize on the advantage.
Featured Image via Fotolia