Zap (ZAP) is a fairly new project developing an oracle marketplace. An oracle is an agent that finds and verifies real-world occurrences and submits this information to a blockchain to be used by smart contracts. Thus, the ZAP platform will ultimately allow developers to purchase high-quality data sets, enabling them to leverage truly decentralized data sources.

Platform

The Zap store, which is slated for a beta release in Q1 2018, allows users to create, publish and subscribe to smart contract and Decentralized Application compatible data feeds.
Here are the core objectives of the project, as detailed in the Zap whitepaper:
  1. Build a Robust, Source Agnostic Oracle Network – Zap is bringing together the exiting wealth of global data with the diverse capabilities of distributed application by ensuring the secure creation of oracles.
  2. Incentivize Oracle Creation and Curation – Zap is building a global, decentralized data marketplace and populating it with unique incentivization tools, empowering anyone to begin monetizing their data.
  3. Fuel the Next Generation of Embedded Dapps – Zap is supplying a much-needed fundamental piece of the Ethereum ecosystem and the Web 3.0 paradigm, enabling developers to construct Dapps that simply could not function without it.
The whitepaper also lists 5 major applications of their platform:
  1. Finance – quantitative data sets for financial institutions. Through the Zap Store, traders can access numerous data feeds, as well as request specific data that is not available through a bounty.
  2. Insurance – the ZAP store’s data marketplace will provide insurance companies with an opportunity to provide self actuating insurance, that automatically pays customers eligible for a payout.
  3. Real Estate – commercial real estate agencies, and their clients, would stand to gain a great deal from real-me heatmaps of foot traffic which can serve as a proxy (or indicator) of shopper volume and consequently indicate the higher likelihood of retail sales. In the decentralized Zap marketplace, anyone could go on the streets with a clicker counter and track foot traffic.
  4. Shipping – By empowering smart contracts to track the movement of goods and allow for verification of shipment, customers can gain the comfort of real-time knowledge of delivery, while financial institutions extending letters of credit to secure transactions pending performance may be able to reduce the risk to their capital of nonperformance or other loss of product. Furthermore, the shipping companies can use Zap as an alternate source of income by publishing their data as an oracle and allowing others to access the data
  5. Dapps – a method of making off-chain information usable by smart contracts. Essentially a decentralized replacement for platforms like the Apple Store.

You can check out a demo of their platform here.

Token

With any cryptocurrency platform, it is important to understand exactly why they decided to issue a token to function within the system. Here is the reasoning for Zap tokens, straight from the team:

In order to create an oracle or make queries for data, both providers and subscribers must bond their ZAP, locking it up in an individual oracle. They will then gain control over an oracle-specific integer value known as “dots”. Dots can be used to query their oracle or destroyed to release ZAP from their respective oracle. One Dot is equal to one query to its respective oracle, and is non-exchangeable and indivisible. A Dot is not a token, and is only an integer value. The amount of ZAP necessary to bond to produce one Dot is determined by price/supply curve delineated by the data provider during oracle creation, and is designed to introduce several dynamic economic mechanisms for incentivizing oracle curation by creators, subscribers, and speculators alike

Here are the details of the Zap token release:

Zap Whitepaper

Zap was distributed in a token generation event in October 2017 with a total supply of 520,000,000. It is currently listed on EtherDelta, HitBTC and Cryptopia.

 

Team

One of the high points of the Zap project is its extremely talented development and advisory team. A notable name working on this project is Nick Spanos, co-founder of Bitcoin Center NYC and a so-called crypto-expert on CNBC.

Final Take

We are intrigued by the scope of the Zap project and believe that it will accelerate mainstream adoption of real-world smart contracts. With competitors that include Oraclize and ChainLink ($150M market cap), we believe Zap could take a significant portion of the oracle market.

Recommended: Most of economy to use blockchain in futureBrilliant Startups Are Using ICOs To Revolutionize The World Of BlockchainZAP Token Distribution Event to Begin October 21st
Read More: Zap – What Is It And Should You Invest?

Disclaimer: The author of this article may have a position in one or more of the securities mentioned above. This article is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as investment advice. Always conduct your own due diligence before making investments.

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