MATIC NETWORK AMA WITH ANKR — DECEMBER 21 2020

21st of December 2020, The CMO of Ankr, Marco Robustelli and Daniel were hosted by Matic Network on their channel. The AMA’s purpose was to discuss the Ankr Validator Node on Matic, and all the reasons that make Ankr a top choice for delegators!

As usual, they were hosted by Delroy Bosco. The details of the AMA are below

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
We will open the channel once we are done with the AMA for Community questions

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)

Please welcome Marco and Daniel from Ankr Network Team. They have joined us today for yet another Validator AMA in the series of AMA that we are conducting with various Validators.

@Marco_Ankr @danielimkk would you like to go ahead and introduce yourselves to the Community?

marco
hey all, it’s great to be here today in the Matic community!

Daniel
Hello hello! Nice to be here!

marco
So I am CMO at Ankr and basically responsible for all marketing and PR related activities

marco
And have been working close together with Matic since early 2019 already

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
It would also be nice if you guys can give us a brief introduction about Ankr as well

marco
So some of you will know Ankr for sure, as we have been partners with Matic for a while already, since early 2019 as mentioned.

marco
Ankr is a Web3 company in the sense that we connect consumers, developers and enterprises to the new internet, the Web3.

marco
Being a Web3 infrastructure provider, Ankr allows users to spin up nodes, get instant API access to major blockchain and DeFi protocols, or set up enterprise-grade infrastructure in a few easy clicks (as we require zero technical knowledge from our users)

marco
Recently we also launched Stkr, our decentralized ETH2 staking protocol.

marco
Stkr is DeFi staking platform with non-custodial management, Micropools, instant liquidity and decentralized governance.

marco
It’s also the first platform to successfully launch staking-as-a-service for ETH2, with the minimum deposit set at 0.5 ETH.

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
Oh yeah! I have actually ready and heard a lot about Stkr. How is that doing btw?

marco
It is doing pretty well, we recently passed the milestone of 10,000 ETH staked and liquidity for our ETH2 bond token aETH is already around 880k on Uniswap

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
Wow that is cool figure

marco
Anyone wants to know more can check out stkr.io

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
Great

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
So would you like to tell us more about Operating Nodes. Which other networks are your operating nodes on and how do you pick and choose?

marco
So we have started this node running business in December 2019 and have expanded it pretty agressively over 2020

marco
We currently provide direct access to 30+ staking nodes — so it’s safe to say that we cover all major networks including Ethereum, Polkadot, Chainlink, Binance Chain, Elrond and of course Matic.
We are very versatile in that regard, and it’s been an important part of our strategic vision.

Moreover, we’re constantly on the lookout for the very best and most popular blockchains to support, so stay tuned for new announcements!

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
So what made you guys choose Matic to operate your node on?

marco
About Matic.
Matic has been our long time partners and as one of the best layer-2 scaling solutions out there, initially we started out to explore implementation to make the Ankr network faster

marco
When we started our node business we have been looking for the most popular chain on the market, in terms of community and traction. But also were very much looking to work with chains who wanted to support us with testing etc and do co-marketing. Matic was an easy first choice
It was actually one of the first nodes we built, when Matic was still in testnet phase, and we worked with Matic all the way toi mainnet and here we are today!

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
Yeah, I remember working with Daniel and Flavian on the testnet for running One Click Setup nodes and testing them out. It was a really good experience and we have come a long way.

marco
Yes, exactly. We have also been very much in contact with Sandeep and at the time Chandresh to work together on promotional activities and even did a meetup together in India!

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
So in order to operate your node efficiently, what are the measures you guys take to ensure that you maintiain a high uptime and availability?

marco
@danielimkk this one is for you

Daniel
Sure!

First of all we had to choose an environment to host our nodes on. An obvious option for us is to use our own datacenter, which has proven its stability in various projects hosted by us, including other validators such as Skale, Oasis, Nucypher and much much more.

Daniel
Second thing is to make sure the node is maintained correctly.

For that we have setup process manager to keep node running even if it fails. And of course health checking, which is quite important to have, as you can’t alway monitor the stability of a node working. So even if something goes wrong it recovers right away

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
Nice!
And I’m sure with the experience of running 30+ nodes, you must have a developed a robust process in monitoring all the nodes concurrently

Daniel
[In reply to Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)]
For sure

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
Also, I’d like to englighten the community that the reason Ankr’s uptime is on the lower end is because they were migrating their entire setup to their own DataCenters. The process was too long and took too much time and hence they lost out on the performance. But ever since they have been running their node efficiently

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
So in terms of Delegation, we have opened the delegations now to external nodes? Why do you think delegators should delegate to your node. I mean what would be the benefits for them?

marco
Correct! We have had to upgrade our infra for the launch of Stkr. But we are all good now

marco
Well, you basically mentioned it yourself already. We have been building nodes for over 40 different blockchains and have a lot of experience building, running and updating nodes.

marco
Users don’t have much insights, other than uptime and commission, but I think to be safe, a user should always choose a reputable company to delegate their tokens to

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
Understood.

marco
Our commission is on the lower end with 4% and our uptime has been 100% after finishing the infra upgrade in late November

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
That’s pretty attractive. I’m sure the community will have a heated discussion about that commission rate

marco
As earning commissions on delegated funds is not our main business or source of income, we can actually do with lower commission rates
Also we use our own infra which is a lot cheaper than for example AWS or Digital Ocean

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
Yeah. That absolutely makes sense
Thanks for sharing that with us

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
What kind of concerns do people have when considering who to delegate to and how do you address these?

marco
Concerns are basically about stability, as in terms of safety it’s always their own responsibility

marco
People staking with us can be sure that our nodes are working stable, to ensure they get the maximum rewards expected

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
That’s good to hear

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
Once operating, what are some big challenges validators are met with from a business and personal perspective?

marco
@danielimkk can you take this one?

Daniel
I would say the biggest challenge in running a validator is maintaining the nodes and making them work stable, while that requires some technical knowledge, which not all of us have time to gain. Basically that’s why we have two roles here with Matic. One is the Provider (Validator) and the Delegator.

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
Thanks for that response Daniel. And I think you’d be able to take my question as well

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
What are the first things you’d encourage someone like up and coming Validators on POS networks to consider before getting started?

Daniel
The first and most important thing is to explore the network deeply. As a POS network can bring profits it can lead to losses, for example slashings.
So having a good understanding of what actions can be done and what are the restricted ones is a must have

Daniel
And another thing is to secure the validator. In case of Matic this is done using a Sentry node, which takes all the external connection on itself, protecting the validator from atacks. While Validator has communication only with Sentry node, making it secure and not available to “external world”

Delroy (Will Never ask you for ETH or Tokens)
Thanks for that response @danielimkk . Detailed and insightful
Well, I’m going to opening up the channel to the community now

Next up were question from the community questions about Ankr.

Q1 Winter Kommt 🥶
- Does Ankr serve both to delegate my tokens and staking and to run my own node? Do I have to pay a monthly fee to get my own node? Or is it all based on rewards?

- Stkr offers the possibility of ETH staking for its version 2.0. But this version will not be available for a couple of years. Will it be possible to get rewards with Stkr before the release of ETH 2.0?

marco
[In reply to Winter Kommt 🥶]
All of these questions are very relevant.

1. you can delegate your MATIC tokens to our Validator. This validator is run by Ankr. We only run validators for some of the best projects out there, such as Matic, Avalanche and Skale

2. With Ankr, you can also easily run your own validator for many chain, including Matic! You dont even need any technical knowledge, just visit app.ankr.com and you can set up your own Matic Validator in a few easy clicks! You pay a monthly fee to Ankr for the hosting and we take care of all upgrades.

3. We specifically designed Stkr to solve the liquidity problem with ETH2. many users are hesitant to stake their ETH for an unknown period, which can be anywhere from 1.5 years or more. With Stkr, you stake your ETH and receive aETH, a synthetic token which represents your ETH stake + all staking rewards. In the beginning 1 aETH=1 ETH but when staking rewards start to accumulate, 1 aETH will slowly increase in ETH value. Visit Stkr.io to learn more!

Q2 Raj Choudary‏
Hi, its great to be here with you guys, ANKR team:

How do you value your participation in the Harmony Testnet campaign?

What criteria do you use to include new blockchain protocols, any requirements? any limitation to tell us?

marco
[In reply to Raj Choudary‏]
Good question:

1. After Matic, one of our other early partners has been Harmony and we participated in their early testnet, in which we learned that during testnet stage a lot of upgrades and changes in the network can be expected. This is a good lesson learned towards any other testnets we particpate(d) in!

2. We look at a couple of things, one thing is traction and community. if we build a node we want te be sure that these a a community waiting to run nodes, stake and/or develop on that chain. We also build nodes for enterprise usage, nodes of specific demand for on-chain analytics companies etc or nodes for chains that have many large token holders/VC’s etc to stake.

Q3 Republic and Freedom
ANKR has three tokens, erc20, bep2 and mainnet, I would like to know what are the mainnet token use cases?

marco
[In reply to Republic and Freedom]
We have decided to phase out the mainnet token and focus more on our use cases around nodes and staking instead of maintaining our own blockchain. So we are currently left with ERC and BEP versions of our token. The ERC token is traded on most of the exchanges and can be used on the Ankr platform as well as the Strk platform, while the BEP tokens are good for cheap and fast transaction on the Binance Chain and Binance Smart Chain

Q4 🍂🐾🥀
Smart contracts are vulnerable to bugs, and even recently three big new DeFi projects were victims of this, costing users funds. How efficient and secured is your smart contract, and did you ever audit it via any external party?

marco

So I have to run to the next meeting. It has been reaaly great to be here and I think we have answered the most relevant questions. Thank you so much for having us and don’t forget to stake your MATIC tokens to our Validator at https://wallet.matic.network/staking/

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