The price of the NEO token, which is the base asset of the NEO blockchain (also known as "Chinese Ethereum"), has gone up another 7% to $9.71 in the past 24-hour period, powering NEO past both NEM (XEM) and Ethereum Classic (ETH) in the market cap table, thereby making it the 16th most valuable cryptocurrency.
In fact, what is even more impressive is that, according to CryptoCompare, as can be seen in the chart below, the NEO price has gone up around 53% in the last 30 days, from $6.34 (10 December 2018, 09:00 UTC) to $9.71 (9 January 2019, 09:00 UTC), making it one of the best performing cryptocurrencies over this period:
One possible reason for NEO's strong price action over the past few weeks is the excitement in the NEO community over the upcoming annual developer conference, "NEO DevCon 2019", which is being held February 16–17 in Seattle, United States. At this conference, NEO's founders are expected to share "new roadmap and platform innovations, and showcase how the global NEO blockchain community is bringing the Smart Economy vision to life."
Another partial explanation might be that on Monday (January 7th), NEO's official Twitter account announced that according to "the latest yearly ranking released by China’s Center for Information and Industry Development (CCID), which is under the country’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology," NEO was listed as a Top 10 Public Blockchain:
In the latest yearly ranking released by China’s Center for Information and Industry Development (CCID), which is under the country’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology,#NEO is listed as Top 10 Global Public Blockchains in Basic-Tech. #blockchain #crypto pic.twitter.com/my6mBMFUcZ— NEO Smart Economy (@NEO_Blockchain) January 7, 2019
Yet another reason might be the tweets sent out on January 3rd by Erik Zhang, founder and core developer of NEO, about the planned upgrade to NEO's consensus algorithm "Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance" (dBFT):
After half a year of development, the improved NEO consensus algorithm dBFT is about to be completed. dBFT will become the best consensus mechanism for blockchains.— Erik Zhang (@neoerikzhang) January 3, 2019
With this improvement, dBFT will have more strict finality. Users only need to wait for one confirmation (15 seconds) to ensure the irreversibility of the transactions and prevent double-spending. This is very suitable for financial applications.— Erik Zhang (@neoerikzhang) January 3, 2019
"Based on current discussions/developments/announcements, we should expect to see the following in 2019 at minimum:
- Decentralization of remaining consensus nodes that are currently operated by NEO (at least 4 of the 5, they should probably keep one)
- Node stability improvements (will improve TPS)
- Node recovery system (let a node rejoin consensus automatically in the event of a disconnect)
- Third consensus phase (commit phase, to prevent 'sporks')
- Light wallet voting implementations (likely in Neon first)
- NeoFS candidate beta (NEO SPCC's DDSP).
Other possibilities for this year (speculation):
- Network analytics
- Additional nodes added in batches of 3 (taking us to 10, 13 etc)
- Other performance improvements (for scalability)
- Block explorer improvements (neo-scan)
- NeoID and NeoX details (maybe not ready for release, but it's not beyond reason either)"
Featured Image Courtesy of NEO Team