What is Nano?
What Is Nano (NANO)? Billed as "digital money for the modern world," Nano is a lightweight cryptocurrency that is designed to facilitate secure, practically instant payments, without fees, and addresses some of the major limitations of both legacy financial infrastructure, and many modern cryptocurrencies.
Development of the project began in 2014 under the name RaiBlocks, and the coin (then termed XRB) launched the following year through a public faucet, which allowed users to claim small amounts of XRB after completing a captcha challenge. Users were allowed to complete as many captchas as they liked to increase their words — effectively trading their time and effort for XRB.
RaiBlocks (XRB) was rebranded to Nano (NANO) in January 2018, with the new name chosen to better represent the speed and simplicity the project offers to users.
It is a peer-to-peer platform that uses a unique block-lattice data structure to allow users to easily transfer value to one another without relying on centralized intermediaries.
Unlike other platforms which typically use the combined proof-of-work of a massive mining network to achieve consensus, Nano instead uses a system known as Open Representative Voting (ORV) — which sees account holders vote for their chosen representative, who then work to confirm blocks of transactions securely.
ORV makes Nano extremely energy efficient, positioning it as a more environmentally friendly alternative to proof-of-work (POW)-based cryptocurrencies.
Nano was founded by Colin LeMahieu, a heavily experienced software developer and engineer with a wealth of experience working for prominent tech companies, including Dell, AMD and Qualcomm.
Self-described as an inventor, LeMahieu has interests that range from space technology to physics and environmental sustainability, and is a well-known name in the digital currency space. He began working full time on Nano in 2017 and remains the CEO of the Nano Foundation — an organization created to drive the development and adoption of the Nano — to this day.
Colin LeMahieu also pushed the vast majority of commits to Nano’s GitHub repo.
Beyond LeMahieu, the Nano Foundation has over a dozen other employees, including George Coxon, a graduate in Evolutionary Anthropology and experienced account executive, and the current COO of the foundation.
As we previously touched on, Nano is designed to be fast. So fast, in fact, that most Nano transactions reach absolute finality within less than a second — compared to several minutes or even longer for many other major cryptocurrencies.
This speed makes Nano suitable for commercial payments, since merchants and retailers no longer need to worry about transaction delays when accepting payments.
Moreover, Nano transactions are completely free. Since representatives do not receive financial compensation for their efforts to secure the network, there is no need for a transaction fee. This makes Nano an ideal solution for processing micro-transactions, since users no longer need to worry about fronting a potentially expensive transaction fee when making small payments.
These features are enabled by its unique architecture. Unlike many cryptocurrencies which are built on top of a distributed ledger known as a blockchain, Nano is instead built around a similar ledger technology called a directed acyclic graph (DAG).
This structure is highly reliable and allows Nano to process as many as 1,000 transactions per second (tps) — without requiring an energy-intensive mining network to maintain its integrity, positioning Nano as an eco-friendly digital payment option.
Check out IOTA (MIOTA) — another DAG-based cryptocurrency with no transaction fees.
Check out EOS (EOS) — a smart-contract capable blockchain with free transactions.
Read Oracles: The All-Seeing Eyes That Guide Crypto Networks—a deep dive by CoinMarketCap Alexandria.
Stay on top of the market with the latest tips, tricks, and trends with the CoinMarketCap blog.
Like the vast majority of cryptocurrencies, Nano has a fixed maximum number of tokens that will ever enter existence, this number is set at exactly 133,248,290 NANO.
The original maximum supply was set much higher than this, but any remaining NANO tokens above the current 133 million limit were permanently burned. In total, around 39% of the original genesis supply was distributed.
Nano is unusual in the fact that its entire supply is already in circulation, this means it is fully diluted.
Because it is fully diluted, Nano is also highly decentralized, and well distributed, with the vast majority of Nano accounts holding less than 100 NANO. As of December 2020, around 20% of all Nano in circulation (~26 million) is held in one of the cold wallets associated with the Binance cryptocurrency exchange.
A total of 5% of the circulating supply was held back for the continued development of the project, this was allocated to a so-called “developer fund.”
Nano is a non-profit blockchain project that utilizes blockchain technology and digital identity to digitize assets, to automate the management of digital assets using smart contracts, and to realize a "smart economy" with a distributed network. On the Nano blockchain, users are able to register, trade, and circulate multiple types of assets. Proving the connection between digital and physical assets is possible through digital identity. Assets registered through a validated digital identity are protected by law.
1. Create accounts
In order to buy Nano in Canada we will first need to create an account on a local exchange to buy Ethereum or Bitcoin. Then you will need to create an account on a global exchange to trade the Ethereum or Bitcoin for Nano.
Create Local Exchange Account
The first step in this process is to gain the ability to buy Bitcoin or Ethereum with CAD dollars. For this you will need a local exchange account, currently we recommend Shakepay .
If you want to buy Nano right now, and if you want to buy only a small amount ($375 CAD or less) use Coinbase.
For a more comprehensive guide and comparison of the various exchanges, see the Exchanges Guide.
Create Global Exchange Account
Next, you will need to create an account on a global exchange. This will allow you to trade the Bitcoin or Ethereum for Nano. Unfortunately, it's not possible yet to do it all on the same exchange. Which is why you need to use multiple exchanges.
We recommend using Binance
For a more comprehensive guide and comparison of the various exchanges, see the Exchanges Guide.
Verify and Fund
In order to fund your local exchange accounts you will need to verify your identity. This often involves sending in copies of your drivers license, a utility bill, and in many cases a selfie of you holding your ID. This is normal ask for verification on exchanges.
As for verification on global exchanges, the verification is usually faster and less intense. For example on Binance you do not need to verify if you are withdrawing 2 BTC or less.
2. Buy your cryptocurrencies
Now that you have both a local exchange account and a global exchange account it's time to make your purchases. You need to buy BTC or ETH, transfer it to the Global exchange, and then place an order to trade it for Nano.
Buy Bitcoin or Ethereum
The first step is buy one of the main cryptocurrencies that you can trade for alt coins. Right now the two main cryptocurrencies you can use to trade are Bitcoin and Ethereum.
If you are not using Binance, it is a important to verify that your global exchange will trade the cryptocurrency you are buying in this step, for Nano.
Login to your local exchange and buy your desired amount of Nano in Bitcoin or Ethereum. We currently recommend buying with Ethereum as it provides a faster and cheaper transaction than Bitcoin, as long as your exchange supports it.
Transfer BTC or ETH to a Global Exchange
This involves getting the funding wallet address from Binance account and withdrawing to it from your Shakepay account.
You will need to wait for the transaction to complete. Once you see the funds appear in your global exchange account you are ready to proceed to the next step.
Trade for Nano
The next step is to actually buy Nano. On your global exchange place an order to trade Ethereum or Bitcoin for Nano.
The fastest way is to place a market order which buys Nano for the current market price on the exchange. However, consider using a limit order to get a better price, but remember if the market price does not hit your limit price your order will not be filled.
3. Storing your Nano
If you just bought some Nano you are currently storing it on the exchange you bought it on. This is OK if the value is small. However, if you own a significant amount it is best practice to transfer your cryptocurrencies to a wallet that is not an exchange.
If you are just getting started you will probably want to use a software wallet. They are typically free and are considered more secure than leaving Nano on a exchange.
Feel free to do a google search to research what wallets are available and know what the options are.
Once you have decided on a wallet, follow the instructions to get it setup then withdraw your Nano from your exchange account. It is common for a small fee to be associted with the withdrawal.
The safest way to store Nano, or any cryptocurrency, is with a hardware wallet that is not connected to the internet. This is to prevent it being stolen or hacked from a exchange or a wallet connected to the internet.
Consider looking at the Ledger line of hardware wallets. They have been in the industry a number of years and offer one of the widest selections of devices.
Leaving it on an Exchange
This is generally not recommended. However, you might want to do this if you are actively trading Nano. Be aware you are taking an extra risk. Exchanges have been known to get hacked or disappear, search QuadrigaCX scandal.
The main advantage of doing this is instant access to your Nano, and saving the fees associated with transactions and withdrawing.
Always consider the reputation and size of the exchange if you are storing a cryptocurrency asset on it.
Generally speaking, I do not keep a balance on any of the local exchanges. If I am going to hold a balance of a cryptocurrency coin/asset on an exchange it will be Binance as they have the most robust platform. However, use this information at your own risk. The safest place for your crypto assets is a hardware wallet like Ledger.
Regardless of the exchange, if you are holding assets on the exchange, make sure you enable two factor authentication and use a separete secure password on the account.
- Create an account on a local exchange.
- Create an account on a global exchange.
- First buy ETH or BTC on the local exchange.
- Next trade that ETH or BTC for Nano on the global exchange.
- Store your Nano, consider getting a software or hardware wallet.