About Immutable X

What is Immutable X?

Immutable X is the first layer two (L2) scaling solution for non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on Ethereum, with instant transactions, infinite scalability, and no gas fees for minting and trading, all without affecting users' property guarantee. In addition, immutable X is the most technically advanced NFT scaling solution ever built with StarkWare's powerful STARK prover and roll-up technology.

Immutable X Team

Immutable X was founded by James Ferguson, a Forbes 30 Under 30 entrepreneur who previously worked as a software developer in the eCommerce company ShopYak and his brother, Robert Ferguson, a Peter Thiel fellow and entrepreneur, and Alex Connoly.

The team consisted of over 100 members from various backgrounds, including traditional finance, fintech, and management consulting.

People from Immutable X. Source: https://www.immutable.com/careers

How does Immutable X work?

Immutable X was created to solve the scalability problem of Ethereum based on ZK-Rollups.

Transactions are processed and completed in the following way:

  • A huge amount of transactions are done off-chain.
  • Asset owners use digital signatures on transactions.
  • Off-chain transactions are transferred on-chain in a single proof.
  • Then the single proof of a smart contract will verify on-chain.

The roll-up technique allows the protocol to compress or pool a huge amount of off-chain transactions into a single online transaction while maintaining the immutability of decentralized transactions. Furthermore, since the gas cost will be paid fixed by Immutable X, transactions are extremely fast, and transaction fees are close to zero.

In addition to having a string of NFT projects, Immutable X has a marketplace for solving user experience problems. To reduce the barrier of entry for content creators and developers, anyone can join the Immutable X ecosystem.

IMX owns a tool for minting on Immutable X that allows the creation and distribution of NFT assets.

Platform key features:

  • For peer-to-peer transactions, the gas fee is zero
  • Customizable transaction fees
  • Users can keep and manage their private keys

With a shared global order book that will help create liquidity, NFT markets can be created without the backend. Through this, everyone can be served with a simple application programming interface (API).

IMMUTABLE X: Protocol Architecture & Features

Immutable X APIs:

Immutable X incorporates a scaling engine to make building NFT applications easier with a set of powerful REST APIs. Every interaction, from minting to trading to transferring money, is simple on Immutable X through an API call-like command. However, if the conversion or asynchronous blockchain interaction is complex, it may take a few minutes or hourly. Then synchronous REST API calls would be a powerful upgrade to current blockchain development models. New entrants to the field, such as established game and content companies, can launch projects better without the need to interact with smart contracts directly.

ZK-Rollups

Immutable X combines NFT-specific proof-of-stake and exchange logic with advanced aggregation technology developed by StarkWare to create the most advanced NFT trading engine ever built. The compilation enables scalability and a world-class user experience while preserving the underlying security of Ethereum. To do this, they generate many transactions, generate a "proof of validity" for those transactions, and then send that proof to an L1 smart contract. Immutable X's compilation enables over 9,000 NFT transfers, transactions, and coins per second, meeting and exceeding the scale required by mainstream NFT projects.

The federation is the path we use to connect users to the Immutable X protocol and thus allows it to support a thriving third-party marketplace ecosystem without security risks.

Unlike other blockchains or sidechains, Immutable X now supports all desktop Ethereum wallets without forcing users to switch networks. If a new Immutable X user is required to register as a user, that means setting up a Layer 2 wallet via Link.

Immutable X partners can embed Link directly into the transaction flow on their website, making buying and selling NFTs more intuitive and efficient. The Links screen will display in the site's transaction flow, allowing users to authorize the purchase, list, and transfer of ETH and NFT, all without leaving the page.

NFT-Enabled Wallets

Source: Immutable X App

Immutable X now supports all Ethereum desktop wallets without forcing users to switch networks. world leading. Thereby Immutable X supports a thriving third-party marketplace ecosystem without posing a security risk: users can rely on Immutable X Link to ensure they are not deceived about the assets they want to buy.

Immutable X SDK

Source: Immutable X website

When combined with APIs, the immutable X SDK will allow partners to build NFT projects in no time. The Typescript SDK makes it easy to integrate the protocol into web pages. Additionally, the SDK enables various types of access to the Immutable X APIs and wallets.

Shared Liquidity & Orderbook

Source: Immutable X website

Unlike other NFT scaling solutions, Immutable X provides a shared global order book to facilitate protocol liquidity. Through a global order book, orders created in one market can be executed in another, promoting more efficient market expansion and price discovery. Thereby, NFT marketplaces can be built on Immutable X without the backend. Immutable X believes that an important way to maximize NFT liquidity is to allow those NFTs to be traded on different, targeted markets.

Default Marketplace & Transaction History Explorer

Legitimacy is an essential factor in determining the value of NFTs. The Immutable X marketplace provides a default protocol for NFT trading, giving users and developers confidence that there is always a safe place to trade. The Immutable X marketplace also lowers barriers for content creators and small developers who don't have the resources to create their own trading experiences. Verifying your transaction history is crucial to enhancing trust and legitimacy in the blockchain ecosystem. Immutable X is similar, with a place where anyone can verify transactions and view historical status.

Asset Minting

One of the critical advantages of Immutable X is that assets can be minted entirely in L2 while retaining the security of L1. Every asset can be minted with immutable metadata, also called a "minting blob" or "blueprint," which will be passed to the L1 smart contract on asset withdrawal. This technology has already been used to mint more than 10 million NFTs on Immutable X (more than all ERC721 NFTs on L1). Assets can also have "mutable metadata," which will be polled from the minting application's server at regular intervals. Each application can optionally provide a "metadata schema," which will inform applications about the ideal representation of each asset's mutable metadata properties. This combination of immutable metadata and mutable metadata support allows NFTs to be used to represent every type of digital asset - from a game asset with a changing experience level to a generative artwork NFT based on an immutable seed and mutable user inputs.

Signing Transactions

Users require a key pair derived from a custom, STARK-friendly elliptic curve to trade on Immutable X. To solve this problem, we have built the "Link" to be an intermediate layer between any Ethereum wallet and Immutable X. Users sign a security message. That message is used as the seed for the generation of the STARK keypair. This "delegates" wallet security and recovery to the user's underlying Ethereum wallet, as even if the STARK keypair is lost, the user will be able to re-generate it using a fresh Ethereum signature. Inside the Link, this STARK keypair is then used to sign transactions, with the precise encoding of each signature determined by the transaction type.

Fees

Fees are the primary source of revenue for the Immutable X protocol. Currently, Immutable X takes a 2% fee on all primary asset sales and a 2% fee on every NFT trade (denominated in the purchase currency). As our goal with Immutable X's fees is to align incentives between application developers, marketplaces and traders, other ecosystem participants will also be able to set fees:

  1. Markets may also add an individual fee to every order. Since Immutable X provides a shared order book accessible to all markets, both receive a fee for an order created in one market and possibly executed in another.
  2. Asset originators can apply royalties to each NFT they create and receive a fee from each subsequent asset purchase. Royalties are a fixed percentage of the asset's sale price and cannot be adjusted after the NFT is minted.

References

[1] "What Is Immutable X (IMX)?", Binance Academy, accessed 12th May 2022

[2] Florian Strauf, Tokenomics 101: Immutable X, Coinmonks Medium, accessed 12th May 2022  

[3] Immutable Documentary, accessed 14th May 2022.