ADA, the native token of blockchain competitor to Ethereum, Cardano, surged to a two-month high Wednesday morning in anticipation of the network’s smart contract capability finally launching.
The fifth largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization shot up 14.5% over the past 24 hours as of 6:15 a.m. ET, according to Coinbase, and is trading at $1.78 – a price level not seen since the first week of June. Over the 7-day period, ADA is returning 28.5%.
A day earlier, Cardano’s founder, Charles Hoskinson, also known as co-creator of Ethereum, announced via a live stream that he would reveal the date on which smart contracts will be released on the Cardano main network this Friday. “We’ll be able to announce when the Alonzo hard fork is going to happen, and at that point…run smart contracts on Cardano,” said Hoskinson. He added the hard fork, or the upgrade, would be implemented before the Cardano Summit, scheduled for September.
Smart contracts, or self-executing computer programs that remove the need for an intermediary, power a wide variety of decentralized applications, such as non-fungible token platforms, games, lending protocols and exchanges, and have spurred growth of many multi-functional blockchains like Ethereum, Binance Chain and Algorand.
Cardano aims to differentiate itself from competitors by developing its platform through peer-reviewed research. Its team of engineers and academics has published more than 100 scientific papers for the underlying technology that seeks to address scalability and other issues inherent in its predecessors.
However, the delayed implementation of key functionalities such as smart contracts has been a sore spot for Cardano’s sizable and enthusiastic community. With the impending launch, Cardano may finally be able to compete on relatively equal terms with its peers.