What is Akash Network & the AKT Token?

Ivan On Tech

Written by Ivan on Tech

September 22, 2021

Offering the world’s first open-source cloud computing platform and decentralized cloud marketplace, Akash Network uses an innovative blend of blockchain and containerization technology. The Akash crypto ecosystem stands to benefit all participants. This includes tenants, providers, and native Akash token (AKT) holders. The multi-utility AKT token plays several roles, including governance and security of the Akash crypto ecosystem.   

In this article, we are going to dive deep into the Akash crypto ecosystem, exploring how the project operates. Plus, we’ll cover containerization technology and the various use cases for the native Akash token (AKT). Also, we will look at the “most powerful portable supercomputer” in the world, Akash Supermini. 

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What is Akash Network?

Branding itself as the “Airbnb for Cloud Compute”, Akash Network is helping Web3 developers deploy decentralized applications (dApps) with minimal setup, configurations, and server management. Moreover, the project hosts the first decentralized open-source cloud, offering permissionless cloud computing resources for developers to create dApps. Further, Akash Network presents some of the most competitive pricing for dApp deployment solutions. When considering centralized alternatives such as Microsoft Azure or Amazon Web Services (AWS), Akash prices are approximately one-third of these.

Blog Akash Network Logo

How does the Akash crypto project offer such competitive prices? Akash Network makes use of containerization technology and the open-source Docker Engine. Through utilizing these technologies, the project “leverages 85% of underutilized cloud capacity in 8.4 million global data centers”. Then, these computational resources are used on the Akash Container Platform for developers to host applications. 

Containerization & the Docker Engine

Akash Network makes use of containerization technology, operating similar to a virtual machine (VM). Both allow multiple types of software to run within a single environment. However, containerization operates by encapsulating an application, bundling together the dependencies required for it to run. This includes the application code, libraries, and any related configuration files. 

Blog Containerization

Instead of applications operating across multiple decentralized layers, hosts install an open-source runtime engine. Most decentralized finance (DeFi) applications operate with aggregation, application, protocol, asset, and settlement layers. With containerization, runtime engines act as the channel for applications, or containers, to interact with the same operating system as the other containers on a network. Containers share the machine’s operating system (OS) kernel, reducing software package overheads and increasing server efficiencies. Moreover, with no OS to boot, this massively boosts start-up speeds for applications and reduces licensing and server costs. 

In the case of Akash Network, the project uses the Docker runtime engine for the encapsulating or packaging of applications. As one of the first open-source runtime engines available, the Docker Engine is responsible for creating the industry standard for containers. Docker Engine uses a universal approach compatible with Linux and Windows operating systems. As such, containers have extreme portability running consistently across any cloud or platform. 

Akash Network, through the use of the Docker Engine, allows developers to define their choice of Docker image, storage, memory, and CPU requirements in a simple deploy.yaml file. 

How Does Akash Network Work?

Akash Network provides software to data centers enabling them to lease their computational resources for hosting Docker containers. As most data centers have spare capacity and underutilized server resources, the project offers data center providers a form of passive income with the native AKT token. 

Blog Akash Crypto Network

Furthermore, the resources becoming available are used by Akash containers to host their applications. Akash Network provides fully decentralized and open-source cloud computations facilitating all decentralized application (dApp) requirements. 

Akash Deployment Marketplace

The Akash Marketplace is a decentralized marketplace operating on the Akash blockchain, which is a Cosmos Software Development Kit (SDK) application using Tendermint. The Akash blockchain records all transactional data on-chain from the Akash Marketplace. This includes requests, bids, leases, and settlements.

Blog Akash Marketplace

There are two main participants of the Akash Marketplace; tenants and providers. Tenants deploy container applications, whereas providers host said applications. Moreover, the marketplace uses “deployments”. Deployments provide a full description of the resources a tenant is requesting to host their application on the network. Furthermore, deployments within themselves contain Groups. Groups are a way of categorizing types of resources that can be leased together from one individual provider. Deployments are submitted to the Akash blockchain, storing requests immutably on-chain. Almost instantly, the deployment submissions generate an order on the Akash Marketplace. 

The Marketplace uses a reverse auction method for generating leases between participants. In short, tenants create orders to their specifications as deployments, and providers bid on the deployments. Tenants then choose their most-suited bid, which then generates a lease contract. 

Following the creation of the lease, tenants must submit a manifest to the provider, outlining specific workloads. The provider will then execute the workloads as per the manifest, and applications will become live. Leases can be closed by either the provider or tenant at any time, additionally shutting down any workloads. 

Escrow Accounts

Before a deployment can achieve the submission stage, tenants must first submit a deposit for their requests. Akash Network uses a “deposit and withdraw” mechanism on Akash blockchain to ensure tenants pay the providers for the leases. Upon creating a lease, a provider will receive passive payments from the deposit sum of the tenant. Moreover, providers are free to withdraw any balance owed to them at any time. Also, tenants can top up their deposits to ensure sustainable funds for running applications. If the funds reach zero, providers are free to close the lease. Alternatively, if providers cease to continue with the lease contract, any unspent funds will automatically be sent back to the tenant. 

Blog Decentralized Escrow Service

As the Akash crypto ecosystem is hosting multiple parties transacting with each other, the project leverages the use of escrow accounts. Cryptographically-secured and smart contract-powered escrow accounts ensure parties on both sides of the transaction receive a fair deal. An escrow account will hold funds until an arbitrary event occurs. For Akash Network, escrow accounts hold tenant deposits during the bidding process. Moreover, requiring a deposit for each deployment request or bid increases performance and security. Any unused funds in the deposit following the end of the auction will be returned to the tenant.  

Another use case for the Akash crypto escrow accounts is for time-based payments to the provider for the lease services. The value of a lease measures in units of blocks, with payments due to the provider for every block, added to the blockchain. Trying to implement a micropayments service on a block-by-block basis would adversely affect the user experience and security of the platform. As such, the Akash escrow accounts enable regular payment intervals covering a longer period. 

AKT Token

As the native multi-utility token, the Akash token (AKT) holds four critical roles within the network. Firstly, AKT token holders receive governance rights, allowing them to vote on platform proposals and updates. Secondly, the AKT token is the primary incentivization method, including long-term AKT token staking options encouraging sustainable participation. 

Blog AKT Token

Thirdly, through staking the AKT token, users secure Akash Network and can receive AKT tokens as rewards. Finally, the AKT token is the default mechanism or unit of exchange to store and transact value within Akash Network. Moreover, the AKT token is one of the reserve currencies within the multi-chain and multi-currency Cosmos ecosystem.

As Akash Network continues to increase adoption of the platform, the project promises to implement a “Take Income” rewards initiative. Upon achieving a certain gross merchandise value (GMV) threshold, Akash Network will introduce inflationary rewards alongside “a share of the total network spend (Take Income) users pay”.

The AKT token is available to trade on a variety of decentralized exchanges (DEXs), including Osmosis, Digifinex, and Bittrex. For readers yet to invest in cryptocurrency and would like a video-guided tutorial, look no further! Our Crypto For Beginners course is the best place to learn how to create a crypto exchange account, trade, and how to keep your assets safe and sound offline in cold storage. Plus, we teach students a few tips on how to recognize and avoid crypto scams along the way too! 

Then, our DeFi 101 course provides a walk-through on how to install the number one Web3 wallet, MetaMask. Further, students discover how to navigate MetaMask with popular DeFi protocols, including Aave, Curve, and Uniswap!

Akash Supermini

The Akash crypto ecosystem is enabling anyone to make a passive income with the Akash token (AKT) and the Akash Supermini. Branded as “the most powerful portable supercomputer”, the Akash Supermini promises users can start earning AKT tokens in three simple steps. 

Blog Akash Supermini

With no complicated setup requirements or need for a highly technical background, users can simply “plug in” and become an Akash node using Akash DeCloud. As the “world’s first decentralized cloud marketplace”, users can also choose to become a cloud provider, run application or machine learning workloads, or provide any unused computational resources on the Akash Supermini to earn AKT tokens. 

The Akash Supermini is small and portable enough to offer users a device earning a passive income anywhere, either at home or at the office. Moreover, users have complete control over their data at all times without compromising privacy or security. Additionally, users can offer or take advantage of cloud computing at a rate approximately two to three times cheaper than traditional cloud competitors. 

Why Use Akash Network?

At present, there are three main cloud computing providers servicing the entire internet market. These are Google, Microsoft, and Amazon. As centralized providers, although behemoths in the industry, they still fall vulnerable to a single-point-of-failure. Furthermore, these providers are not always transparent with transactional data usage and storage. Plus, these entities have the ability to dictate which users can access their services. 

Blog Akash Price Comparison

Enter Akash Network. As the first open-source cloud computing provider, the project uses blockchain and containerization technology to create a decentralized marketplace for developers to deploy their applications with minimal configuration and server management. Moreover, developers have full flexibility in their choice of attributes for applications. Plus, any current live containerized and cloud-based applications running on centralized networks can seamlessly operate with lower costs and faster speeds with the Akash decentralized cloud. 

Another advantage of the Akash crypto ecosystem is the portability of applications or containers. Containers can run across any cloud-native applications with advanced cryptographic security. Asset exchange transactions occur off-chain, while deployment files use a private peer-to-peer network fully separate from the Akash Network. 

Exploring Akash Network & AKT Token Summary 

As the first decentralized open-source cloud, Akash Network facilitates superior application deployments with minimal costs. Furthermore, these application deployments are optimized for efficiency and scalability, making them suitable for thriving industries. This includes decentralized finance (DeFi), machine learning, artificial intelligence (AI), and more.

Blog Akash Network Mobile App

Moreover, using the AKT Token, the Akash crypto network costs around a third of the cost of using comparable services via Amazon AWS, Google Cloud Platform (GCP), and Microsoft Azure. Plus, you can compare prices for yourself using the Akashlytics.com tool.

To learn more about how blockchain technology can integrate with current centralized IT systems, see our Blockchain Business Masterclass course. Ivan on Tech Academy is the largest provider of blockchain education in the world, offering each student an individual study plan. Also, we offer a Study Guide course to show students how to make the most of their experience. Plus, our Essential Blockchain Job Search Guide prepares students for taking their fresh skills into the workplace. Start towards your perfect career in blockchain at Ivan on Tech Academy today! 

Also, don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @Academy_IOT! We’d love to hear your thoughts about the Akash crypto ecosystem and the AKT token!

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