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Stablecoins are added to Bitcoin with the release of Taproot Assets alpha by Lightning Labs.

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In the quest to “bitcoinize the dollar and the world’s financial assets,” as asserted by Ryan Gentry, the Director of Business Development at Lightning Labs, Taproot Assets takes center stage.

Lightning Labs, a Bitcoin layer-2 infrastructure firm, has unleashed the mainnet alpha of Taproot Assets. This protocol is strategically designed to facilitate the issuance of stablecoins and real-world assets on both the Bitcoin and Lightning Network. The current iteration, Taproot Assets v0.3, promises a “feature-complete developer experience.” It empowers developers to issue, manage, and explore stablecoins and diverse assets seamlessly on the Bitcoin blockchain, as explained by Ryan Gentry, Head of Business Development at Lightning Labs.

Gentry envisions a transformative era for Bitcoin, envisioning a multitude of global currencies finding expression as Taproot Assets. The Lightning Network, in this scenario, becomes the catalyst for instantaneous settlement in global foreign exchange transactions.

According to Lightning Labs on Oct. 18, this version of Taproot Assets facilitates the issuance of financial assets on-chain in a scalable manner, marking a paradigm shift into a new era of multi-asset bitcoin.

The mechanics of Taproot Assets involve routing through existing Bitcoin liquidity on the Lightning Network. Gentry underscores that this integration extends Bitcoin’s network effects, propelling it closer to the goal of “bitcoinizing the dollar.” He articulates, “This is how we make bitcoin the global routing network for the internet of money and bitcoinize the dollar along with the world’s financial assets.”

Developer demand for stablecoin applications on Bitcoin is described by Gentry as “overwhelming,” a sentiment amplified by the fact that certain stablecoin issuers hold more United States Treasurys than countries like Germany and South Korea. This underscores the global significance of these assets and the substantial user demand on a global scale, Gentry emphasized.

Leading up to the mainnet alpha launch, nearly 2,000 Taproot Assets were minted on testnets in recent months, indicating active testing and development. Lightning Labs clarifies that the alpha tag signals an ongoing testing phase within the community to identify and address potential bugs.

In the expansive landscape of the Bitcoin ecosystem, developments like Bitcoin Drivechains (via Bitcoin Improvement Proposal-300), Botanix Labs’ Spiderchain, and the BitVM are also pushing boundaries to enhance Bitcoin’s capabilities.

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