I hope the Cosmos team continues to follow through with their promises to make the crypto world much easier to manage. With existing progress, I see a future whereby I log into the Cosmos Hub and gain the ability to control up to half of my portfolio, including non-Cosmos assets.
Nearly two years ago, I watched as one of the Cosmos ecosystem’s founders made many promises to the crypto community. I thought that if even half of those promises came true, their ecosystem would turn complex issues into simple mouse clicks. This is why I chose to invest in ATOM.
In early 2020, people spent a lot of time learning how to maneuver the system before they could stake, transfer, or do anything in crypto. Each network had a unique process in those days, and very little terminology was the same. Therefore, crypto noobs, like me back then, often made catastrophic mistakes such as sending crypto into non-recoverable places and orphaning assets on insecure wallets.
As I listened to the speech, I heard the promise of crypto for the first time. I learned of its ability to make a safe and easy-to-use interface that could morph the crypto world into something adoptable beyond its hundred thousand or so enthusiasts at that time.
Fast forward to today, where 250 million folks worldwide participate in the current crypto market. As I think back, I realize that almost every one of the promises has come true.
Initially, I did my staking on Cosmos in Exodus and Atomic Wallet— two wallets that supported the ATOM token early on and still do. Back then, I wasn’t certain if both of those wallets would turn into good homes, so I split my ATOM and staked some in each to increase the spread and lower my risk. To this day, I have my initial staking amounts and even more staked.
Last year I learned that friendly wallets like these aren’t one-dimensional. Instead, they compile individual wallets from each supported network into one easy-to-use interface. After realizing this, I started logging into each wallet on the proper network. This action created maximum spread and eliminated all the leg-work of establishing new accounts.
For example, I logged into the ZIL network with my Zilliqua wallet, which was embedded in my Atomic Wallet, and repeated the process with my ETH wallet, SOL wallet, etc. I gained access to the private keys within the Exodus and Atomic Wallet interfaces and used those to open a proper wallet on each network. Zilpay for Zilliqua; Phantom for Solana; etc.
When I first set up my Keplr wallet and loaded my ATOM private keys, I saw the scaffolding of an easy-to-use system that spanned MANY networks. It wasn’t like an Exodus or Atomic wallet, as there was a sense that every network involved played by the same rules, and the experience was spiffy, expeditious, and incredibly reasonably priced. They call it the Cosmos Hub, and it’s fully and seamlessly integrated with Keplr.
When it cost hundreds of dollars in ETH to send an ERC-20 asset from one exchange to another—no matter the quantity or value of the asset— the Cosmos Hub transfer prices were only a couple of pennies each. One of their first promises was free or nearly free transfers, which they delivered early on.
One of the Cosmos teams implemented an ideal trading platform in Osmosis, and their cross-chain transfers allowed seamless movement between supporting networks with little effort or cost. So, if I were to make a mistake and send an asset to the wrong network, I could simply send it back and only be out a couple of pennies.
The last promise I remember was that the staking process would be made simple and perhaps even consolidated to a single button that claims the staking rewards and then re-stakes them automatically. I was genuinely hopeful this would become my long-term strategy because it involved gaining so many unique assets. I was able to predict it would eventually be quite arduous for me to oversee without something like this. I only recently noticed this promise became a reality when I logged in a few weeks ago to start back into my staking strategies.
The Cosmos team published a massive upgrade recently, and the first time I logged in after that new code update, I was shocked and amazed to see such progress on their promises. It’s comforting to watch a community of developers deliver on their promises in a speedy time frame, and what they have accomplished is nothing short of fantastical.
Here’s one of my accounts; at first, you might get overwhelmed looking at these screenshots, but the explanation will shed light on how this process is far easier than before.
In the screenshot above, I can easily see the assets I hold, the assets I have staked, the percentage APY I’m rewarded, and a button to stake more or vote.
It may look overly complex until you realize that each asset has its own crypto network. Never before have I seen such visibility across multiple networks, not even in Exodus and Atomic Wallet, as they have support to stake only on a few networks, and their interface isn’t this clean.
Currently, only blockchain networks built with the Cosmos tools can be integrated into the Cosmos Hub. However, another promise was to eventually involve other non-Cosmos networks such as ETH, SOL, and AVAX. I have no idea if this is still on the roadmap. I do know that ETH transfer fees keep the ETH network from being economical, which may be why this integration is a few years out.
Other wallets allow easy access to staking contracts but often meander through several pages, making claiming and re-staking an arduous process. This hassle lessens the chance that folks like me will go through this process, which lowers the overall compounding effect of re-staking.
Staking itself doesn’t give you a huge balance: Most contracts need you to claim your new rewards, and then you can sell them, keep them, transfer them, or stake them.
Re-staking precipitates the compounding effect; it’s the process of claiming your rewards and then staking them back into the staking contract, thus increasing your staked holdings and giving you a larger staking reward the next time.
If it’s easier to full circle your rewards, you’ll be more likely to do it more frequently, and therefore the compounding effect will be greater. Let me show you how easy it was for me to re-stake my ATOM. I clicked the “Claim & Restake” button, and my KEPLR wallet popped up with a note about the cost for my approval.
I’m claiming my 0.040154 ATOM reward and staking it back into the contract with the rest of my ATOM. This action will cost 0.007 ATOM, which is deducted from the staking reward. To me, this process incurs no cost since the fee is less than the reward, and 0.033154 ATOM will go back into my staking contract.
Once I Approve the transaction—known as signing—the button does a little swirly, and about 15 seconds later, it’s all done.
So, approximately every week, I will click on all the “Claim & Restake” buttons and check the cost to ensure the staking rewards cover it. Then I will approve and move on regardless of the dollar value since the fees are nominal.
Each time I come in, I’ll only be restaking a few assets as some with lower balances and/or lower APY’s take longer to accumulate into an appreciable quantity. Also, it doesn’t make sense to re-stake if I’m paying half of my staking rewards on fees. Therefore, I like to make sure the cost is less than 10% of the staking rewards.
I hope the Cosmos team continues to follow through with their promises to make the crypto world much easier to manage. Here’s their current roadmap. With existing progress, I see a future whereby I log into the Cosmos Hub and gain the ability to control up to half of my portfolio, including non-Cosmos assets. This over-reaching potential and its aptness are precisely what the crypto world needs and makes the Cosmos Hub well on its way to becoming the Crypto Hub of the Future.