It was announced today that WINk crypto gambling platform has acquired JustLink.io. In this post I'll go through some details about it, how it affects WINk, the tokenomics of $WIN and speculation on the future of WINk.
I have covered WINk sister project BLINk extensively on this blog. If you are a frequent flyer here you know that BLINk runs on the Binance Smart Chain and is the biggest crypto gambling platform on the BSC.
WINk is the main project from WINk. It has been up and running since 2017 and is arguably one of the biggest crypto gambling platforms in the world. I've yet to write an extensive WINk review. But I promise, I will be doing that in the near future.
WINk is the largest crypto gambling platform running on the Tron network (TRX). It is part of Tron's big five and is often endorsed by Justin Sun and pushed in relation to marketing efforts relating to TRX in general.
WINk are slowly bringing their vision of running a true multi-chain crypto gambling platform. WINk on TRX was the first step, BLINk on BSC is the second.
Both these projects are separate entities managed by the same team. They have different roadmaps and, given the age difference in both projects, are at different stage of their product lifetimes. WINk is about three years ahead and have a 360 gambling suite consisting of online casino, poker, online sports betting and their own in-house casino game development. Additionally, they are working on integrating more functionalities such as payment methods and currencies. The latest line in WINk expansion is the acquisition of JustLink.io.
JustLink is a decentralized oracle network (more info below on what an oracle within the blockchain industry is). Decentralization reduces the need for trust among contract participants (concept of trustless network). JustLink help ensure the security of the whole flow of smart contract execution. Specifically, around obtaining and securing data from off-blockchain sources. Basically, bridging the blockchain network with the "real" world where traditional contracts are found.
Connecting the blockchain to the real world is important since most of our world is running with web 2.0 applications. Think Internet of Things (IoT). Where data transmitted off-blockchain would be better utilized if integrated to a blockchain network and be covered by smart contracts running in dApps. I have written a bit about VIDT in the past, a hybrid blockchain allowing traditional businesses to leverage the blockchain without having to get involved with the development of an actual blockchain net work themselves.
The vision of JustLink is to be the link between on-blockchain and off-blockchain in the Tron network (TRX), one of the fastest growing networks in the world right now. Which means that JustLink wants to be the oracle solution on the Tron network.
There is of course a lot more technicalities when it comes to an oracle solution, if you are savvy and want to deep dive you can find the JustLink whitepaper here.
JustLink will become WINkLink.
The utility of $WIN will be increased. $WIN is a TRC20 token and will effectively become the governance token of the oracle network.
What has been said from WINk crypto gambling platform perspective, is that this acquisition will help solve some issues around security and trust relating to random number generators (RNG) utilized in casino and poker games.
Anyone familiar with the world of online gambling and online casinos specifically, knows that RNG is at the core of all games. All games in a casino are games of chance. The outcome of game rounds, e.g. spin in a slot game, outcome of a roulette wheels etc, are all random. A player has no influence on the outcome of a game. This is where random number generators comes into play. It is what decides the outcome of rounds, randomly. It is essentially a long sequence algorithm that runs in a piece of software. The algorithm generates sequences of numbers randomly which determine the outcome of a game round.
The result of random number generators are that all games are fair.
This is important from both the players' perspective and the crypto gambling platform. Players want to play games where they have a fair chance of winning, equal to any other players' chance. A crypto gambling platform like WINk or BLINk needs their games to be RNG certified to get a gambling license to operate a platform or dApp that offer services such as online casino games.
Traditionally, RNGs run in a centralized manner relating to the physical state of a specific hardware. Random numbers on blockchains needs to be distributed in order to achieve decentralization of data. This can be tricky to achieve. Which is why most gambling mechanisms on the blockchain typically use the concept of provably fair.
Provably fair is not necessarily random. Instead, it is a way to prove that outcomes were fair and not tampered with. A central part of all blockchains is that the ledger containing all transactions is public. Anyone can view it, players and crypto gambling operators alike. A record of a transaction is created, distributed and stored. This record is immutable and cannot be tampered with. Given the nature of the blockchain, anyone can verify that an outcome was fair and not tampered with. Which is what makes the provably fair system work really well.
However, the addition of traditional RNG components are more secure and reliable, especially when merged with the blockchain.
According to the official Medium post released by WINk, they will:
"...in a few years, WINkLink oracle service will be able to provide reliable, unpredictable and verifiable random numbers, and fully restore trust and improve user experience by tapping into data, events, and payment systems etc. from the real world."
This is broad and vague but if I were to apply any of my knowledge i relation to off-chain and on-chain blockchain gambling it could include:
Allow for improved off-chain communication and integration of such data sources in RNG components and games from major game providers. Basically, any project working with smart contract calling. Could be game providers and other data providers or resources.
Sports data. There are many data points for any given sport in terms of statistics and in-play data. For example, an esports match has a rich scoreboard, the same with a football match containing both stats and visualization of data. All major sports data aggregators such as Perform, Genius Sports and GRID run off-blockchain. Data which, through an oracle like WINkLink can be bridged to the blockchain.
If the purpose of this is for WINk to become the blockchain equivalent of e.g. Perform, then this is a huge deal if we assume that blockchain gains true mainstream adoption in a few years.
It could also, apply more generally and not specifically to just crypto gambling platforms. But rather help society as a whole and legacy businesses to embrace digital adoption and leveraging blockchain technology.
In whichever way JustLink is going to be utilized, this is an interesting acquisition by WINk and effectively extend the utility of $WIN tokens.
I promise to write a review of WINk crypto gambling platform in the coming weeks. It is one of the most interesting gambling dApps right now. And one of the most exciting dApps running on TRX.