BLOG March 17, 2021

Introducing Neo N3 - the next evolution of the Neo blockchain

After two and a half years of development, the next evolution of Neo is on our doorstep. Countless hours of planning and programming by our brilliant developer community have resulted in a platform that we can all be immensely proud of — one that we feel competitors will find difficult to match in many respects.

As we move forward into this future, we are proud to reveal the new brand identity for Neo’s latest version, N3.

Introducing N3

Neo 3.0 was first announced by Erik Zhang in July of 2018. It promised many things, such as a new architecture, native contracts, and an improved economic model. We have delivered these things and so much more. Platform native decentralized storage, oracles, and name service are just some of the features that will make Neo the most complete blockchain development platform available today.

With TestNet right around the corner, our branding must reflect the maturity and evolution of the project.

Enter: N3.

N3 is a contraction of “Neo3,” the term we adopted throughout 3.0 development. It is a nod to our journey and embodies many of the same characteristics as the software version it represents: Bold, refined, simple, and powerful.

It also provides modularity. N3 allows us to separate the version brand from the core Neo brand — something that is impossible with the name “Neo3.” This new brand architecture will enable us to market our major releases to developers, without interrupting the regular user’s relationship with Neo’s core identity.

In the short to medium term, you can expect to see the N3 logo showing up quite a lot as we tell the world there is something new to see over at Neo. In the general sense however, casual users will continue to recognize Neo by its existing brand for years to come.

It is important to understand that N3 is a version of the Neo blockchain. You may compare it to Big Sur being a version of MacOS. This means when we talk about our soon-to-be-launched upgraded blockchain, we still refer to it as Neo.

To put it another way, there is no such thing as the “N3 blockchain” or the “N3 network.” It is the Neo blockchain, running software version N3.

Neo Legacy

To further draw a line between 3.0 and its predecessor, we will begin referring to 2.x (the current Neo blockchain) as Neo Legacy.

As most of you are aware by now, N3 has many new features that are not compatible with 2.x. Thus, Neo will be launching N3 on a new chain from a fresh genesis block. This means that we will have two versions of the Neo blockchain running concurrently.

In order to give people plenty of time to migrate to N3, the existing 2.x chain will move into long term support.

Calling the 2.x chain Neo Legacy clearly communicates to users that it is being superseded and will not receive further updates in the future. When you see the two chains side by side in a wallet or explorer, you will not have to think twice about which is the latest network.

It is a simple, but powerful change that will make the migration process easier for users to understand.

You can expect to see tools built by existing community groups begin to adopt this new nomenclature in the near future.

Moving forward

We are so excited to start the next chapter in Neo’s history with the official TestNet of Neo N3 RC1 to be launched before the end of the month. Following this, we’ll be rolling out a new website, new grant opportunities, new hackathon events, new adoptor incentives, and other exciting initiatives on the march towards MainNet.

We are aware that many token holders are probably wondering what they need to know about migration from Neo Legacy to Neo N3. For the immediate future, this is something you do not need to worry about. We will publish information closer to MainNet release regarding token migration, so for now it’s simply enough for you to monitor the official Neo channels for more details. When the new MainNet does go live, Neo Legacy will run in parallel with Neo N3 for an extended period to ensure everyone has ample time to migrate.

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