Stellar Lumens is a distributed infrastructure for handling money transfers, bringing together people, companies, and payment systems. The focus is on accessibility, security and improving the efficiency of payment systems.
The company is a non-stock, non-profit organization whose product can be used without any restrictions and whose source code is open source.
Other companies are expected to integrate Stellar Network into their own products and develop solutions for their own KYC (know your customer) policies and anti-corruption compliance as needed.
Stellar Lumens has received widespread support from a broad range of people. The list of advisers alone includes a large number of leaders from major technology projects, including:
Among the companies backing the project are giants such as Google, BlackRock (a global investment management company with over 13,000 employees), Stripe, and FastForward.
The Stellar Network runs on a collection of servers distributed around the world and calls itself a decentralized platform. It is these servers that keep the platform functioning by accounting for all transactions as well as managing the data. Basically, Stellar can be compared to PayPal, but it is more flexible and accessible to all segments of the population.
In order to use the network, you need to deposit funds into the platform's wallet. With a swap transaction, the deposit currency (there is a great variety of it) will be converted into Stellar Network tokens for further transfer.
This allows instant transfers without the long wait for transaction processing that we are used to seeing with traditional credit institutions. This is not the case with Stellar. If you transfer $100 to another address, the specified amount of money is withdrawn from your account, the transfer is processed in XLM tokens. Then a second conversion is performed and the recipient is credited in the currency specified by the sender (e.g., $100).
In addition to making payment transactions, the platform also acts as a decentralized cryptocurrency exchange platform. The public blockchain stores orders to buy or sell a certain cryptocurrency. Exchange rates are specified by the traders themselves.
So, if you want to exchange pounds for dollars, place an order via the Stellar Network platform, indicating the desired rate. If there is a holder of dollars who is willing to sell you dollars at that price, the deal will be executed.
Another interesting feature of the product is the relative ability to conduct multicurrency transactions. As mentioned above, value transfer transactions are made directly in XLM tokens. However, a secondary conversion is made to fund the recipient's account. Thus, any currency pair can be selected. It is for this reason that the company is a key player in cross-border transactions.
Most of the wallets suitable for depositing Stellar Network tokens into their account are monocurrency or exist within the ecosystem. The most popular are Stellar web wallet. This is an online service that allows you to work with XLM without additional software directly from your browser. Or, Stronghold, a distributed exchange platform built into the Stellar system. Furthermore, StellarTerm allows you to participate in distributed exchange trading. Furthermore, the Stellar Desktop Client is developed by the Stellar development team to work with XLM.
Other supported wallets can be found on the project's official website.
The project is actively developing and regularly reports on the blog about the work done. They also discuss their vision for the future life of the project.
The project is growing, new features are being introduced and partnerships are being entered into. For example, an agreement with IBM and KlickEx to work together on cross-border transfers was announced early in the track. The Stellar Network is to be used as the core infrastructure because of its ability to process more than 10,000 transactions per second at low cost and high reliability.
Jed McCaleb, one of the founders of Stellar, said the agreement was extremely significant:
“The [Stellar and IBM] collaboration is not just important for Stellar - it is an essential step in the development of the entire financial industry. For the first time, public blockchain is being used to enable cross-border multicurrency transfers. Where previously such transactions took days to complete, with Stellar, the wait time will be reduced by times. In the future, we hope that all work in this area will lead to a change in the mechanism of moving money as such. Individual regions, or even the whole world, could become different. Developing countries in particular are interested in this.”
The project is often compared to Ripple, but there are differences between Stellar Lumens and Ripple. The latter is developed exclusively for the needs of legal entities (large organizations), while Stellar Lumens is more adapted for individuals. This, however, has not been an obstacle for Deloitte (one of the largest audit firms with 255,000 employees), Parkway Projects, and Tempo, which have already started developing services that use the Stellar Network.