Drawing from the original vision of Ethereum, the NEAR team defines the protocol as a blockchain based community cloud that combines compute and storage in a trustless way.
Ultimately, NEAR sees itself as a developer platform for the open web and abides by these principles:
The NEAR token is the native token on NEAR. It will be used to provide network security through staking as well as to pay for transaction fees.
Original testnet participant, genesis block producer on mainnet, and member of Near Protocol’s Validator Advisory Board.
Serving many of Near Protocol’s early investors.
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Active participant in the NEAR ecosystem.
Third-party custody solutions are available through our institutional partners. Contact us for more information.
The world’s most advanced physical IDC + multi-cloud staking infrastructure.
You maintain custody of your NEAR at all times.
Protected via industry-leading Delegation Agreement.
Stake your NEAR tokens in a few clicks by following these steps:
Now that the NEAR mainnet staking is enabled, you will be able to earn staking rewards. Use the NEAR Wallet to delegate to the Figment staking pool: figment.poolv1.near
NEAR Protocol's native token, NEAR, is used to stake, pay for transactions, and for validators to participate in on-chain governance.
In short: transfers and staking rewards are now enabled
Token transfers were enabled by validators on October 13, 2020 via on-chain vote. Staking rewards began after we upgraded the network on October 20, 2020.
Initially, the NEAR token is being staked to earn new issuance ("inflationary") subsidies. That means that the NEAR supply will increase and stakers will capture the newly issued NEAR.
In short: you can stake locked tokens to earn annually ~22% as of Oct 21
You can stake locked tokens. Stakers will proportionally share the newly issued NEAR tokens. The targeted issuance rate is 5% annually with 10% of that going to the NEAR treasury.
This means that 4.5% of issuance will be given to validators and NEAR token holders who decide to stake NEAR.
As of Oct 21, 20% of the supply is staking, meaning that stakers are earning just over 22% annually. If 70% of the token supply participates in staking, then stakers should expect about 6.4% in yearly rewards.
Since staking rewards are tied to inflation, read about how inflation and rewards are related here.
The NEAR token also gives validators the right to vote on policy decisions for how the NEAR protocol will operate and distribute treasury funds.
In short: up to 48 hours
From the moment you initiate the unbonding process, it takes up to 48 hours (4 epochs) to unstake. During this time you will not earn rewards. When the process is complete, you can transfer/trade your NEAR tokens.
In short: self-custody or third-party; the protocol controls staked NEAR
You will be able to self-custody your NEAR tokens, ideally using a Ledger hardware wallet. You can use the NEAR team's wallet with (or without) a Ledger device: https://wallet.near.org
Figment has partnerships with a number of top-in-class custodians: firstname.lastname@example.org
NEAR Protocol takes control of your NEAR tokens while you are staking. If you unbond your tokens, this process will take 36 to 48 hours before the protocol returns your tokens to you. While your NEAR are staked, you will earn staking rewards and your validator will vote in on-chain governance on your behalf.
In short: no
Your validator (and stake) will not be slashed for downtime. Validators who perform an equivocation (ie. double signing a block at the same height) or an invalid state transition (producing an invalid chunk of a block) will not will not lose stake.
However, you can lose potential rewards for downtime, and you can learn more about how we secure our infrastructure here.
Staking income on NEAR is automatically distributed. Figment is never in control of your rewards.
Staking income is staked automatically, which means you will need to unstake to withdraw your staking income.
In short: yes, if your validator is offline too long
Your validator (and stake) will not be slashed for downtime, but your validator will be removed from the active set if offline for more than 10% of a 12 hour period. If this happens, your validator will not be able to earn rewards for up to 36 hours. Your validator (and stake) will not be slashed for downtime.
If your validator is online at least 99% of the time, you will earn 100% of your potential rewards. Anything below that and you will lose potential rewards, and ultimately you will earn no rewards for the epoch (ie. 12 hour period) below 90% uptime. That means, for example, that if your validator has 95% uptime, you should receive ~50% rewards for that epoch.
You will not lose potential rewards if your validator performs an equivocation (ie. double signing a block at the same height) or produces an invalid state transition (producing an invalid chunk of a block).
In short: a 5% increase in supply via new issuance (and a 70% burn rate for transactions)
NEAR Protocol launched with a supply of 1B NEAR tokens, 176M of which will be circulating. New supply issuance will not begin until Mainnet Phase II. You can read about token distribution here.
According to the Economics Blog Post and Economics Paper, 5% of additional supply is issued yearly: 90% goes to validators (4.5% total) and 10% to the protocol treasury (0.5% total). 30% of transaction fees are rebated to the contracts touched by the transaction and 70% are burned.