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LearnCrypto 101

Zeus Network: BTC and SOL communication layer

Jonathan G.
zeus network

    The Bitcoin network has its origins in a 2008 white paper that laid the foundational principles that would challenge traditional financial systems and inspire a new era of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies.

    Today, most people know the native currency of the Bitcoin network, BTC, but not many are familiar with the services and applications that are being built on top of the chain.

    In this guide, we’ll explore the Bitcoin ecosystem, highlight its shortcomings, and explain how Zeus is working on solving them.

    Bitcoin network: Slow and costly transactions

    The Bitcoin network has faced criticism for its slow transaction times and high transaction fees.

    Slow transaction times

    Bitcoin only executes approximately 4–8 transactions per second (TPS), with the average transaction time being 10–60 minutes.

    In contrast, Solana registers true TPS between 800-1,000, while traditional payment systems, such as Visa, can process 1,500-2,000 transactions per second. Further, the transaction times for both Solana and Visa are anywhere between 2–20 seconds.

    High transaction fees

    Transaction fees on the Bitcoin network are determined by the data size of the transaction and network demand.

    Generally, transaction fees hover around $3, but can skyrocket to thousands of dollars during peak times. In contrast, Solana offers some of the cheapest transaction fees, typically between $0.003 and $0.005.

    While the slow transaction speeds and high costs highlight the scalability challenges faced by the Bitcoin network, ongoing developments such as the Lightning Network provide a pathway into a more efficient future.

    Bitcoin network: Lack of dapps

    Compared to proof of stake blockchains such as Solana and Ethereum, the Bitcoin blockchain doesn’t allow for smart contracts.

    As a result, the Bitcoin network can’t support decentralized apps (dapps) such as Jupiter or Tensor.

    Having said that, there are numerous protocols on the Bitcoin network offering ways to create both fungible and non-fungible tokens.

    Some of these protocols include Bitcoin Ordinals, Stamps, BRC-20s, and Runes.

    If you’d like to learn more about these protocols, read our Bitcoin Runes guide.

    Bitcoin DeFi

    As outlined above, the architecture of the Bitcoin network doesn't really allow for a prosperous DeFi ecosystem.

    Having said that, there are 18 DeFi protocols on the Bitcoin network, accounting for ~$1.13 billion in TVL. Additionally, the market cap of native BTC, which also runs on the Bitcoin network, is currently at $1+ trillion.

    What this tells us is that there’s both interest and significant liquidity on the Bitcoin network and in Bitcoin DeFi.

    But how can this interest be addressed more adequately? This is where Zeus comes in…

    Zeus: Bringing Bitcoin liquidity to Solana

    Zeus is a communication layer that enables the Bitcoin and Solana blockchains to communicate and interact with each other.

    Essentially, this means that Zeus enables developers to build and scale applications that can seamlessly move assets and information across the Bitcoin and Solana blockchains.

    Currently, the Zeus ecosystem encompasses Apollo, BTC staking, and the Zeus Programming Language (ZPL) which gives developers the tools to build and integrate cross-chain dapps.

    The future could look more interesting, though. You might, for example, want to use your BTC more actively, but the BTC network is congested—leading to exorbitant high fees and slow transaction times. In the future, you might be able to leverage a Zeus-powered protocol and deploy your BTC in Solana DeFi instead, all while enjoying a more delightful user experience.

    Just recently, Zeus also launched its governance token—$ZEUS—which will be used to enhance security features, access, and incentives within the entire Zeus network. Learn more about $ZEUS.

    How to trade $ZEUS with Phantom?

    Note: You need to hold SOL in your Phantom wallet to complete this process.

    1. Log-in to your Phantom wallet on the browser extension or mobile app
    2. Select the tokens you’d like to trade
    3. Click the swap icon (arrow) at the bottom
    4. Review the order
    5. Submit!

    How to set up a Phantom wallet?

    If you’d like a friendly multichain wallet for crypto, DeFi, and NFTs, try us out. We offer browser extensions for Firefox, Chrome, Brave, and Edge, as well as apps for iOS and Android.

    First, download Phantom. Then, create a new wallet.

    If you’d like to fund, or send funds to, your Phantom wallet, you can do so via the “Buy” button on your asset tab. We offer various funding options, such as MoonPay, PayPal, and Robinhood to make it easy for you to fund your wallet.

    Once you do that, you're ready to go.

    How to bridge tokens to Solana with Phantom?

    If this is your first time using Solana, you might have most of your assets on other blockchains, such as Ethereum and Polygon. With our Cross-Chain Swapper, you can bridge tokens across Ethereum, Solana, and Polygon right in your Phantom wallet. Here’s how:

    Disclaimer: This guide is strictly for educational purposes only and doesn’t constitute financial or legal advice or a solicitation to buy or sell any assets or to make any financial decisions. Please be careful and do your own research.