The competition on the infrastructure blockchain project is growing fast. A lot of projects is trying to solve issues of transaction speed and transaction costs, to let blockchain technology become mainstream. The current low capacity of the main blockchain protocols and cryptocurrencies (Bitcoin, Ethereum), nearly 10-30 transactions per second (TPS), does not match with the world's commerce needs at all. In contrast, Visa claims to have 56,000 TPS on its network, while Alipay has achieved 200,000 peaks TPS in November 2017.
The scalability problem of the current blockchain-based systems poses significant limits for their extensive applications. Especially Chinese startups and corporations are very active in this market.
In order to solve scalability problem without compromising its security and decentralisation, several projects have already launched the alternative protocols that aim to significantly increase the throughput of the blockchain protocols. For instance, EOS launched its infrastructure for dApps, which Test Network can sustain over 10,000 TPS. EOS raised $197M during its ICO in June 2017 and now is the one of the largest cryptocurrency in the world by market cap. IOTA is able to process 500-800 TPS, raised $400M and now 11th by market cap in the world of cryptocurrencies.
Moreover, classical blockchains could create new versions with substantially higher TPS (Sharding, Plasma, State Channels, Lightning Network), as a result, the unique value of Nervos would be smaller.
Nervos ecosystem will consist of three layers - a network, a CKB and generators. CKB is the common knowledge layer that provides data storage for decentralized applications. It is the foundation of the Nervos network. Generators form the data generation layer and implement the application logic.
The foundational layer provided by Nervos is completely decoupled from the dApp on which it runs. Five components comprise the system. They are cells, cell types, validators, generators, and identity. The layered architecture of Nervos allows dividing data storage and computation processes. Thus, different layers can become more scalable, flexible, and allow using different consensus algorithms. On the Nervos network, dApps can run on different consensus mechanisms based on the needs.
The project was founded in January 2018, and by now some progress had been done which can be tracked on Github. However, the github activity is low and the current stage of development is unclear. Also, there is no roadmap available.
Nervos suggests a project economy where token is an essential part of the system. The creation and storage of states on the CKB incurs costs. Updating cell data or transferring their ownership also incur a transaction fee. The creation of states must be validated by full nodes, incurring the computational cost. The more cells needed for a dApp, the more cells must be purchased with the equivalent amount of tokens. For the time that space is utilized, the tokens used to purchase the space are locked. When space is not needed, the tokens are released.
There is currently no information available about the token and financial metrics.
There are 17 people working in Nervos, according to the company's website. Most of the team is located in Hangzhou, China. However, several key team members live in different time zones, including Belgium and USA.
Chief Architect Jan Xie previously was a Founder at Cryptape, former researcher & developer at the Ethereum Foundation focused on Casper & Sharding, worked directly with Vitalik, co-founder of ethfans.org, and former architect at Peatio. Another co-founder Terry Tai was a Core developer at Yunbi & Peatio, and co-founded Teahour.fm. Daniel Lv - another co-founder was formerly the CTO of imToken. The 4th of the co-founders previously worked as SWE at IBM. All of the co-founders have active Github accounts that show some of their commits.
Most of the team members have appropriate background and education and hold BSc or MSc degrees in Computer Science or Engineering.
Overall, the team looks solid and has some strong tech specialists with previous startup experience. However, some of the members do not mention Nervos as a workplace on LinkedIn and are separated from the core team.
Nervos mentions partnerships with China Merchants Bank and Cryptape on their website.