Why Solana? Part 1

Lambda Markets
6 min readJan 10, 2023

Lambda Markets has used the Solana blockchain since launch in July 2021 — it’s our blockchain of choice. Here’s a quick glance at why.

Quick glance

  • Solana has very rapidly become one of the most fully featured, fast and rapidly growing blockchains out there.
  • Solana offers an elegant and secure solution for user authentication on decentralised applications (dApps) — particularly on mobile.
  • QUIC, QoS and fee network upgrades have dramatically improved Solana’s performance. Its engineers continue to focus on catering for massive user growth and adoption. Even on a slow day it’s orders of magnitude faster than it’s competition.
  • Solana’s high speed, low-fee blockchain presents a lower barrier to entry for most who’ve never experienced on-chain transacting before and that promotes rapid expansion. It is a far smoother transition from the traditional web experience.
  • Solana processed $1.63Bn USD in transactions during FTX collapse + low cost arbitrage and almost instant transaction settlement means fully liquid markets can be spun up in a short period of time and maintained.

Solana Overview

Prior to Solana, blockchain speeds were capped at about 15 transactions per second (TPS) and fees were expensive. As of the 6th January 2023 Solana averages ~20M non-vote transactions per day or 232 TPS, transactions on the network are almost zero, averaging $0.00025/tx.

Non-vote transactions (7DMA) — The Block

Solana’s high-speed + low-fee network presents a lower barrier to entry for most who’ve never experienced on-chain transacting before and that helps to expand the blockchain and it’s decentralised applications rapidly.

Solana operates via proof-of-stake (PoS), however, it is also the first blockchain to operate with proof-of-history (PoH) to establish a cryptographically safe source of time throughout the network.

‘Solana is dead’ — is it though?

The ‘Solana is dead’ narrative has been spat by many since the capitulation of FTX and that has likely stemmed mostly from the fact $SOL price is down ~95% from it’s peak. However, arguably, the blockchain is performing the best that it ever has ⤵

Since the roll-out of Solana QUIC, QoS and fee market upgrades:

  • Solana has had it’s three largest weeks by DEX volume:

FTX crash — $1.63B USD
September 18th-25th — $594.13M USD
January 1st-7th — $541.75M USD

  • Transactions per second (TPS) have consistently remained above 3,000 and non-vote TPS have averaged ~350. Ethereum is running between 15–30 TPS on average.
Solana TPS — Solana Beach
Solana non-vote transactions per day — Dune Analytics
  • $BONK mania was bootstrapped on the chain seamlessly and grew to ample liquidity. So much so that centralised exchanges fell over themselves to list it. DEX volume on Solana rose by ~250% with no impact on performance.
$BONK — Lambda 2.0
  • As of January 6th, $BONK had completed 4.4M transactions in only a few days, whereas the entire Ethereum network had completed 1.8M transactions over the course of the recent 14 days.
Solana DEX statistics — Defi Llama
  • Solana daily active users are currently at 675,000 and trending north. Just over 1.5M $SOL was transacted in the Solana NFT market during the final week of 2022.

How Lambda Markets uses Solana

The beauty of the blockchain is that access to web applications can be granted using the public ledger, a traditional username + password for login authentication isn’t required. On-boarding new users to Lambda with Solana is completed in fractions of a second and for less than $0.001 USD.

Has this wallet paid for access? When did they pay? How much did they pay?

The blockchain can answer all of these questions, providing a publicly-available user-authentication solution for any web application — no need for storing username and passwords, all actions can be authenticated via a blockchain wallet. The correct user rebates, discounts and access rights can all be applied quickly when we look at the Solana blockchain ledger.

Lambda 1.0 — Solana Wallet authentication

The utility of Solana is not limited to only user authentication, though. Lambda uses Solana’s high throughput and low cost advantages to power:

Decentralised trading: Solana’s high throughput and low cost enables a decentralised trading experience like no other — this is one aspect that we are particularly bullish on integrating into Lambda 2.0

  • High TPS and low transaction costs means that liquidity without centralised exchanges (CEX) is abundant.
  • A market can be spun up very quickly and liquidity bootstrapped without the requirement for CEX intervention. Market makers can quote for next to nothing and cheap arbitrage keeps prices honest across venues — $BONK is the perfect example of this recently.

A sustainable, on-chain $LMDA token market: the low-cost, high throughput characteristics of Solana that make decentralised trading a breeze also enable efficient and secure token creation + LP.

  • $LMDA liquidity + token market has already been prepared for bootstrapping liquidity when trading goes live on the 25th January.
OpenBook DEX on Solana

The best user experience for first time + advanced blockchain users: Solana offers ease of access and transacting in an on-chain world. In July 2021 we introduced many users to Solana with the phantom wallet. This enabled a successful public launch, on-ramping new users who’d never used any blockchain before, in a matter of minutes.

Other major blockchains like Ethereum and Bitcoin operate at capped speeds and affordability during periods of heightened volume. For the purposes of decentralised applications, in our opinion, Solana offers a far greater user experience.

Mobile application: Solana is focused on integrating mobile support for blockchain payments and has already launched this with Solana pay. Our token portal is fully optimised for mobile — Solana applications like the phantom wallet ensure that we are able to build for mobile customers — which will be key for Lambda in the near future as we shift to a mobile application. At the token portal thus far, 62.2% of users have accessed using a mobile device!

Strong Developer Community: Despite what crypto twitter may say, Solana is attracting some of the industry’s brightest talent. Recently, the Solana community pulled together to create OpenBook DEX — born out of the Serum and FTX controversy.

Solana’s central limit order-book (CLOB) Project Serum has been deprecated for reasons relating to SBF. This move created major liquidity stresses on-chain — showing the strength of the Solana developer community + the power of decentralisation, the Serum programme has been forked to create OpenBook, sustaining decentralised trading on Solana.

Get access to Lambda 2.0 Alpha

All whitelisted accounts + token portal participants who’ve contributed ≥$1,000 USDC can access the Lambda 2.0 alpha version.

We’ve decided to:

  1. Grant access to Lambda 2.0 alpha version for ALL whitelisted users + users who have contributed ≥$1000 USDC
  2. Launch Lambda 2.0 alpha version on the 11th January at 22:00(GMT+1)
  3. Extend the Token Portal close to 25 January at 22:00(GMT+1)
Lambda 2.0 Launch Calendar
Lambda 2.0 Alpha Access

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