Tether launches Synonym to boost Bitcoin adoption through Lightning Network

Synonym Software Ltd., a company founded by stablecoin issuer Tether Holdings Limited, officially launched on Tuesday, setting in motion a highly ambitious project to bring Bitcoin (BTC) transactions mainstream through an independent financial platform that utilizes the Lightning Network. 

Synonym’s stated goal is to enable self-ownership and control of crypto assets by creating an open financial ecosystem that utilizes Bitcoin and the Lightning Network, the company announced Tuesday. CEO John Carvalho said “Hyperbitcoinization won’t magically happen on its own. In order to live in a world without big banks, oppressive regulations, or Big Tech presiding over our lives, we need a strategy and ecosystem to replace the legacy economy. That is where Synonym comes in.”

The first protocol to be launched by Synonym is called Slashtags, an interoperability framework for private networks that doesn’t rely on blockchain technology and can be used by any platform for coordination, privacy and consensus.

The Bitcoin network recently completed its highly anticipated Taproot upgrade, which targets improved transaction efficiency, privacy and smart-contract functionality. Taproot marks the first major upgrade to the Bitcoin network since Segregated Witness, also known as SegWit, all the way back in 2018. SegWit eventually culminated in the launch of the Lightning Network, Bitcoin’s second-layer scaling solution.

Related: Bitcoin Suisse to enable Lightning Network payments

Scalability has been cited as one of the biggest barriers preventing the mass adoption of Bitcoin as a transactional currency. The Lightning Network aims to solve the scalability issue by enabling off-chain transactions. The number of Lightning Network nodes, which open payment channels with each other, has increased by 128% over the past 12 months, according to industry sources.

The number of Lightning Network nodes has increased sharply over the past two years. Source: Bitcoin Visuals

At the time of writing, Bitcoin commands over 43% of the total cryptocurrency market capitalization. The premier digital currency recently topped new all-time highs north of $69,000 amid growing mainstream adoption and recognition from financial elites that crypto is a new asset class.