Hello everyone, it’s a fresh edition of our weekly newsletter.
April kicked off at quite a leisurely pace, but Ethereum’s Shappela upgrade worked like a charm, rekindling investor interest in the crypto industry. And now, as May tiptoes closer, crypto whales appear to be eyeing bullish bets on a few choice altcoins. Read on for more on that and other big stories from the day.
Again, today, we’re starting with a slight detour into the world of AI, as the UK Government has created a £100 million fund to keep ChatGPT in check. What’s all that about? Let’s find out, and more.
Top stories in the Crypto Roundup:
At the Business Connect event in London, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Technology Secretary Michelle Donelan have announced an initial £100 million in funding for the UK’s artificial intelligence (AI) Taskforce.
The Taskforce, which is being modeled on Britain’s COVID-19 Vaccines Taskforce, is being set up to help further the UK’s capabilities in “safe and reliable foundation models”.
Foundation models are artificial intelligence systems that have been trained on a vast quantity of data, with the training leading to the AI being able to accomplish a range of objectives and tasks. Foundation models include large language models (LLMs), like OpenAI’s GPT-3.5 and GPT-4.
On top of developing reliable foundation models, the AI Task Force is being tasked to aid the UK with becoming a leader in foundation models and their applications across the economy, and to help ensure that AI adoption and usage is carried out safely.
The £100M pledge highlights how the UK Government increasingly has AI innovation in its sights. As part of the funding announcement, the Government mentioned that AI is “predicted to raise global GDP by 7% over a decade, making its adoption a vital opportunity to grow the UK economy,” while also citing research that suggests “the broad adoption of such [AI] systems could triple national productivity growth rates.”
In particular, healthcare and education were suggested by the Government as sectors where AI innovation could be particularly promising, with AI helping to speed up illness diagnoses and drug discovery and development in medical settings, for example.
“Harnessing the potential of AI provides enormous opportunities to grow our economy, create better-paid jobs, and build a better future through advances in healthcare and security.
By investing in emerging technologies through our new expert Taskforce, we can continue to lead the way in developing safe and trustworthy AI as part of shaping a more innovative UK economy.” — UK Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak.
The Taskforce — which is set to be composed of government and industry experts — will be led by a Chair who will be announced this summer, reporting directly to the Prime Minister and the Tech Secretary.
While the Chair’s appointment is ongoing, Matt Clifford, Chair of the Advanced Research and Innovation Agency, will advise the Prime Minister and Technology Secretary on the development of the taskforce.
On Thursday, April 27, Crypto.com announced a landmark collaboration with global tech giant Samsung. The deal will see the blockchain firm deliver enhanced trading and analysis capabilities for Samsung’s latest line of flip phones —the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold devices.
The advanced app features will enable increased productivity, multitasking and ultimately deliver enhanced trading and analysis capabilities. Crypto.com is the first crypto platform to deliver a tailored experience for Galaxy Z Fold devices.
Both Crypto.com and Samsung highlighted their shared vision of creating a more engaging mobile-device user experience in bringing this best-in-class crypto app features to market.
“This collaboration with Samsung will allow users to experience our app like never before. Together, Samsung and Crypto.com have optimized the Crypto.com App for the large screen experience, taking advantage of the foldable form factor, to bring a more productive way of using the app for the trading and analysis of cryptocurrencies.”
—Eric Anziani, President. (Chief Operating Officer of Crypto.com)
Through the update and with the Galaxy Z Fold, Crypto.com and Samsung are providing an empowered Crypto.com App experience. Users engaging with the app on their Galaxy Z Fold devices will have more tools and resources immediately available on one single screen, such as the ability to compare a range of tokens simultaneously and more easily than on any other mobile device.
Voyager creditors can’t seem to get a break.
Barely a week after reaching a much-publicized agreement, BinanceUS, the American subsidiary of the world’s largest cryptocurrency trading firm Binance.com has announced the proposed $1 billion deal to acquire defunct crypto lender Voyager has failed.
Binance.US has opted to withdraw from its $1 billion Voyager acquisition deal, citing a “hostile and uncertain” regulatory climate.
On Twitter Wednesday, the bankrupt crypto lending company announced that it had received a letter from Binance.US withdrawing and suggesting that it will terminate its purchase deal for US$1 billion voyager acquisition deal assets.
Here’s the backstory — In July 2022, Voyager Digital filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, just shortly after crypto hedge firm Three Arrows Capital defaulted on a huge $650 million loan to the company. As part of its restructuring plan, Voyager opted to auction off its crypto assets, with FTX emerging as the biggest bidder. But again, unfortunately, FTX imploded and Voyager sought a new buyer and reached a $1 billion buyout arrangement with Binance.US.
Interestingly, Binance.US’s acquisition of Voyager assets was met with fierce criticism from regulators. The Securities and Exchange Commission and U.S. Attorney Damian Williams both filed requests to delay the buyout, which the court denied.
Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao stated on Twitter that the company’s unexpected decision was likely due to regulatory pressure.
The crypto community has mixed reactions—Crypto Influencer Hsaka tweeted, “Binance pulling out of the Voyager deal is part of the conditions of an imminent settlement with the CFTC,” Zhao replied with a shrug emoji.
“While our hope throughout this acquisition process was to help Voyager’s customers access their crypto in kind, the hostile and uncertain regulatory climate in the U.S. has introduced an unpredictable operating environment impacting the entire American business community,”
Voyager stated that, by its court-approved restructuring plan, the company will now disburse cash and cryptocurrency directly to clients via its platform.
Solana Labs is working on an integration with OpenAI’s artificial intelligence chatbot, ChatGPT, through an open-source plugin that will allow users to interact with the Solana network for tasks like checking wallet balances and purchasing non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
But, OpenAI’s plugin for ChatGPT hasn’t yet been rolled out to its entire user base, and Solana hasn’t confirmed whether the plugin will launch when they do become widely available. Solana Labs has encouraged developers to nevertheless test using the open-source code to retrieve on-chain data they may be interested in.
The integration was showcased through a screenshot that demonstrated ChatGPT retrieving a list of NFTs owned by a specific Solana address, complete with metadata links.
The project is also committing $1 million in funding for AI tool projects on the Solana platform. Meanwhile, OpenAI has introduced a privacy feature for ChatGPT users to disable chat history, allowing more control over their data.
A judge has approved the use of surveillance software on the mobile phones of Sam Bankman-Fried’s parents to ensure that the FTX co-founder adheres to his bail conditions. Bankman-Fried’s legal team had previously requested an extension for enforcing the revised bail conditions, citing difficulties in finding suitable surveillance software for his parents’ devices.
On April 21st, SBF’s lawyers filed documents in a New York District Court stating that the surveillance software they found could log the keystrokes of all activity on Bankman-Fried’s parents’ devices but was unable to take a photo of the user every five minutes as initially suggested. U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan reviewed and approved the proposed measures on April 24th.
The software will not only monitor unauthorized application installation, internet browser history, iMessage, voice calls, and FaceTimes, but also track the devices’ activities across all messaging and calls. This extensive surveillance is aimed at ensuring Bankman-Fried remains in full compliance with his bail conditions.
A technical consultant has been appointed to review the keystroke logs and screenshots at least three times a week to ensure that Bankman-Fried’s bail conditions are not breached. This level of monitoring is a clear indication of the seriousness with which the court is treating the case and the need to ensure compliance with the bail terms.
Arbitrum is a Layer 2 scaling solution for the Ethereum blockchain, designed to improve transaction speeds and enhance privacy by storing data off-chain.
On Tuesday, Apr 25, the Arbitrum (ARB) sparked fears of another price retracement when it airdropped 113 million tokens worth nearly $120 million to reward 131 Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs) that have built early projects on the Arbitrum network.
Within the first 12 hours after the airdrops, the market appeared unmoved as the ARB price sat precariously above $1.30
As many expected, few DAOs, including Trident, instantly sold off their tokens within an hour of the Airdrop. However, at press time, on-chain data from Loookonchain shows that none of the top 50 highest recipients of the Airdrop have sold.
The chart above shows that most of the top recipients are prominent crypto DAOs with large treasuries.
Generally, institutional whale DAOs are typically known to be long-term holders with unique preferences to generate passive income on their holdings rather than explore short-term profit-taking opportunities.
Furthermore, unlike retail holders who can sell at a whim, most DAOs go through a time-consuming voting process before making asset management decisions.Going by these premises, if the top DAOs continue to HODL, ARB could avoid a price correction.
On April 25, popular on-chain analysis twitter account Lookonchain pointed out activity from BTC addresses that have been dormant for over a decade. Lookonchain noted particular activity from BTC whales that have been dormant for many years.
“3 whales with 8,199 BTC (225M) have woken up in just 5 days,” Lookonchain noted in a tweet. Among them were addresses with 1,000 BTC activated after 12 years, 1,128 BTC after 10.5 years, and 6,071 BTC after 9.3 years.
Some $BTC whales that have been dormant for many years have woken up recently.3 whales with 8,199 $BTC ($225M) have woken up in just 5 days.And the giant whale with 79,957 $BTC ($2.19B) has been dormant for 12 years, the price when he received $BTC was only $0.93. pic.twitter.com/2MZPDc8UuW
— Lookonchain (@lookonchain) April 25, 2023
Crypto-twitter had mixed reactions to Lookonchain’s observations. Some netizens grew alarmed by the news, fearing whales might dump BTC and crash its price. On the other hand, some accused Lookonchain of spreading FUD.
Meanwhile, Crypto Influencer and YouTuber, Satoshi Stacker, presents a possible answer to the anomaly. He linked the whales moving BTC for the first time in over a decade to recent news of a wallet-draining operation that surfaced in April. Users lost over 5,000 ETH in tokens, NFTs, and coins in this operation, which has been running since at least December 2022, affecting over 11 chains.
There’s a wallet drainer who’s attacking OG holders, targeting Private keys created in the past. Over 5K $ETH has been stolen since December. This isn’t a phishing attack. The attacker likely came into many old data, including private keys.
— Satoshi Stacker (@StackerSatoshi) April 25, 2023
Therefore, according to Satoshi Stacker, whales may be moving some of their BTC holdings into safer wallets to protect themselves from wallet drainers targeting OG holders.
Meanwhile, Lookonchain urges its users to keep an eye on a giant whale that has been dormant for 12 years. The whale holds almost 80,000 BTC or $2.19B. Notably, the address is linked to the infamous Mt. Gox hack.
|Top 5 Gainers: April 24 – May 1, 2023|
|Name (Ticker)||Price ($)||7-day Growth (%)||Market Cap|
|iExec RLC (RLC)||$1.88||+22.71%||$152.9M|
|MX Token (MX)||$2.53||+10.84%||$253.2M|
|Top 5 Losers: April 24 – May 1, 2023|
|Name (Ticker)||Price ($)||7-day Drop (-%)||Market Cap|
|Celer Network (CELR)||$0.023||-18.56%||$165.57M|
|Alchemy Pay (ACH)||$0.031||-6.7%||$194.01M|
|SPACE ID (ID)||$0.65||-5.57%||$198.97M|
|Bone ShibaSwap (BONE)||$0.99||-2.89%||$628,969,404|
Here’s where we’ll leave it for this week. Catch up with us again next week.
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