The first thing to know about the BitTorrent Token (BTT) airdrop is that it's not just a one-off event.
This first one begins a series of monthly airdrops that will run until February 2025.
There are 990 billion BTT tokens created on the Tron blockchain. Of those, 10.1 percent have been designated for airdrops to TRX holders over the next six years, starting on Monday. Furthermore, the monthly airdrop will get bigger as time goes on, increasing once every February.
"Think of Tron and BitTorrent like a razor and a blade," Justin Sun, founder of Tron and CEO of BitTorrent, told CoinDesk via a spokesperson. "You need both together to create a new internet economy driven by decentralization. We are seeding BTT to deliver a marketplace of innovations and applications across the web."
When the Tron blockchain reaches a block height of 6.6 million, the team will take a snapshot of TRX balances and split up the first airdrop proportionally to all TRX holders. The first 12 airdrops will each distribute 990 million BTT tokens. Holders of one TRX will receive 0.11 BTT next week, according to Binance.
Last June, Tron acquired BitTorrent, one of the oldest decentralized protocols on the internet. Then it announced it would create a new token called BTT for use with its file-sharing services. The public sale for that token sold out almost instantly, much like early sales during the initial coin offering (ICO) craze.
Is BTT safu?
Though Binance has been communicating all the information about the BTT distribution, users don't need to hold their tokens on the exchange to receive the free tokens.
Two wallets that were featured at niTROn Summit 2019 have confirmed that their users are all set to receive airdrops of TRC-10 tokens (the standard used to create BTT). Tron Wallet and Trust Wallet have both confirmed that they are ready to support the airdrop, as have exchanges Binance, OKEx and Huobi.
"We support TRX, TRC-10 tokens, and if you control your keys, you will get an airdrop of BTT," Viktor Radchenko of Trust Wallet confirmed to CoinDesk over Telegram. We previously spoke to Rachenko when non-fungible tokens were the hot topic in crypto.
"There's not anything left to do," Fred Terenas, who runs business development for Tron Wallet, told CoinDesk, adding that his team is still getting that question endlessly.
Terenas has noticed one action advanced users are taking to get ready.
With the forthcoming initial BTT airdrop, he said, holders of other TRC-10 tokens are moving to TRX to get the free BTT. "Some people go out and get rid of whatever they have to get the airdrop," he said. This has led to short-term price drops for TRC-10 tokens, though Terenas expects many users to return to their original holdings after they receive some BTT.
This dynamic, however, could play out each month. Such movements to and from TRX will make for an interesting ongoing experiment.
With its long airdrop plan for BTT, Sun's Tron has positioned TRX as the proverbial gift that keeps on giving.
The total monthly airdrop will increase five times over the next few years, ending at 1,402,500,000 BTT per month in February 2025.
That said, if this is a strategy by Tron to encourage its supporters to HODL, Turing Advisory's token economics expert, Sid Kalla, doesn't see it working.
"In general, the price of a token can drop much more than what the airdrops are worth," he said, "so this should not be seen as a 'long-term hold' strategy for TRX holders, going by the history of airdrops in the space."
Kalla does foresee advantages for Tron's partner, Binance, however.
"One thing that jumps out is the set date on which the balances are eligible for the airdrop. This is bound to increase volatility and trading volume around this date, which is likely good for Binance," Kalla noted, while acknowledging he couldn't be sure:
Binance did not reply to a request for comment.
Justin Sun speaks at niTROn Summit 2019 in San Francisco. (Photo by Brady Dale for CoinDesk)
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by Bullish, a cryptocurrency exchange, which in turn is owned by Block.one, a firm with interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets including bitcoin and EOS. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary, and an editorial committee, chaired by a former editor-in-chief of The Wall Street Journal, is being formed to support journalistic integrity.