What is the connection between Ripple and Xpring?

Xpring is Ripple’s initiative to create an open developer platform for money. Ripple builds software for financial institutions to enable frictionless cross-border payments. Xpring supports the core technologies that power Ripple’s solutions and provides tools, services, and programs to developers.

What is the XRP Ledger?

The XRP Ledger is a decentralized cryptographic ledger powered by a network of peer-to-peer servers. The XRP Ledger is the home of XRP, a digital asset designed to bridge the many different currencies in use worldwide. Ripple believes XRP can provide a key contribution to its vision for an Internet of Value: a world in which money moves the way information does today.

Learn more about the XRP Ledger and how it works here.

What is XRP?

XRP is a digital asset native to the XRP Ledger. Anyone with a cryptographic key and an internet connection can receive, hold, and send XRP to anyone else. 100 billion units of XRP were created during the inception of the XRP Ledger. XRP's creators have developed it to be a desirable bridge currency that can facilitate trades in any other currency.

Learn more about XRP and how it works here.

What can I do with XRP?

Right now, you can:

  1. Trade it
  2. Store it on these wallets
  3. Send it through wallets or Coinme
  4. Use it to buy things at merchants that accept Bitpay (TBA)
Who created the XRP Ledger?

The XRP Ledger was created in 2012 by David Schwartz, Jed McCaleb, and Arthur Britto.

How is the XRP Ledger secured?

Cryptography is one of the hardest parts of any distributed system, and a mistake can lead to money stolen by malicious actors anywhere in the world. The XRP Ledger uses schemes similar to other cryptocurrencies for signing and verifying transactions. The XRP Ledger also layers multi-signing functionality so you can use multi-factor authorization or split keys across multiple people as a backup, and provides new algorithms with a path to migrate the keys you use if a breakthrough in cryptography makes the old algorithms obsolete.

For more information, see Cryptographic Keys and Multi-Signing.

How is XRP different than ETH and BTC?

The XRP Ledger's biggest difference from most cryptocurrencies is that it uses a unique consensus algorithm that does not require the time and energy of "mining", the way Bitcoin, Ethereum, and almost all other such systems do. Instead of "proof of work" or even "proof of stake", The XRP Ledger's consensus algorithm uses a system where every participant has an overlapping set of "trusted validators" and those trusted validators efficiently agree on which transactions happen in what order. As of early 2018, the amount of electricity the Bitcoin network uses per transaction is more than a family home in the USA uses in an entire day, and confirming the transaction takes hours. A single XRP transaction uses a negligible amount of electricity, and takes 4 or 5 seconds to confirm.

Furthermore, each new "ledger version" in the XRP Ledger (the equivalent of a "block") contains the full current state of all balances, so a server can synchronize with the network in minutes instead of spending hours downloading and re-processing the full transaction history.

For more information on how the XRP Ledger's consensus algorithm works, see The XRP Ledger Consensus Process. For background on why the XRP Ledger uses this consensus algorithm, see Consensus Principles and Rules.

In short, XRP is faster, cheaper, more scalable, more energy efficient, and more decentralized, in certain respects, than BTC and ETH.

Is the supply of XRP finite?

Yes, this is by design. The creators of the XRP Ledger created 100 billion XRP at the inception of the ledger. Hyperinflation is one of the leading causes of death for currencies. While the decentralized system of validators provides XRP with some resistance to political factors, the rules of the XRP Ledger provide a simpler solution to hyperinflation: the total supply of XRP is finite. Without a mechanism to create more, it becomes less likely that XRP could suffer hyperinflation.

Learn more about XRP’s supply here.

What is Interledger?

Interledger is an open protocol suite for sending payments across different ledgers. Like routers on the Internet, connectors route packets of money across independent payment networks. The open architecture and minimal protocol enable interoperability for any value transfer system. Interledger is not tied to any one company, blockchain, or currency.

Learn more about Interledger here.

How does Interledger work?

The power of the Internet comes from the fact that it connects everyone. It can do this because it is not a single network or system. The Internet is a network of networks or internetwork. Packets of information are sent across independent telecommunication providers using open protocols such as TCP/IP. This makes it easy to communicate with anyone, no matter what provider they are connected to. We need the same for money and value.

Interledger uses connectors to route payments across different ledgers. Conditional transfers are used to secure multi-hop payments so funds cannot be lost or stolen in flight. On top of this security primitive, Interledger provides a packet and address format, heavily inspired by the Internet Protocol (IP), to instruct connectors where to forward payments. For more details, see the Interledger Architecture RFC.

Who created Interledger?

Interledger was invented in 2015 by Stefan Thomas and Evan Schwartz. The whitepaper and initial implementation were released in October of that year and Interledger W3C Community Group was formed shortly thereafter to carry on the development. Today the project consists of hundreds of companies and individual contributors, with backgrounds ranging from blockchain and tech to finance and government.

Why should you care about Interledger?

Payment networks today are siloed and disconnected. Payments are relatively easy within one country or if the sender and recipient have accounts on the same network, blockchain or ledger. Try sending to someone on a different system though, and you may be out of luck. Where connections between ledgers do exist, they are manual, slow or expensive.

Interledger is an open suite of protocols for connecting ledgers of all types: from digital wallets and national payment systems to blockchains and beyond. This will make it easy to transact with anyone, no matter where we live or what type of money we use. Sending value will be as easy as sending information is today. This is the vision of the Internet of Value.

What can I do with Interledger?

You can build payments into your apps or other protocols without tying yourself to a specific currency or payment network! Create accounts on our demo ledgers and start sending Interledger payments with the client libraries. Check out Getting Started.