Lightstreams ICO Review – Blockchain Network for DApp Speed and Privacy - Crush Crypto

Lightstreams ICO Review – Blockchain Network for DApp Speed and Privacy


  • Project name: Lightstreams
  • Token symbol: PHT
  • Website:
  • White paper:
  • Hard cap: $20 Million (ICO contributors own 55% of total token supply)
  • Conversion rate: 1 PHT = $0.15
  • Maximum market cap at ICO on a fully diluted basis: $36 Million
  • Bonus structure: Not available yet
  • Private sale / white list: No whitelist or presale information yet
  • ERC20 token: TBA
  • Countries excluded: USA and China
  • Timeline: Token sale begins May 31, 2018 and ends June 30, 2018 (please refer to Lightstream’s website for all up-to-date details)
  • Token distribution date: TBA
Video summary (video is 5:57 long):

Project Overview

What does the company/project do?

Lightstreams is a blockchain network that aims to support any decentralized application that requires high performance and data privacy. It is a modification of the Ethereum protocol, attempting to solve some of its current issues while remaining compatible with the existing Ethereum developer tools and libraries.

Lightstreams will create a permissioned decentralized storage system integrated into a blockchain network. The goal is to provide uncapped storage capacity, zero storage costs, improved transaction speeds, and allow for management of data privacy and confidentiality.

The team has developed an authorization protocol called Permissioned Blocks designed to manage access to protected content in decentralized networks. The protocol contains two network layers:

A Distributed Secure Storage Network (DSSN) layer that is based on IPFS for peer-to-peer sharing of protected content, where IPFS data blocks are only exchanged with authorized nodes.

An Ethereum layer for token and smart contract capabilities, where smart contracts are used to manage the programmable file permissions for the DSSN.

A diagram showing how the Permissioned Blocks protocol functions is shown below:

How advanced is the project?

The Lightstreams idea was conceptualized in 2017 and the project currently operates out of Estonia. The proof-of-concept for their permissioned blocks technology was one of the winners at the Consensus 2017 Hackathon.

The project received $300,000 funding in a seed round in January 2018. The future roadmap is shown below:

Q3 2018 – Authority nodes and network infrastructure launch.

Q4 2018 – Commencement of decentralized governance where token holders can decide policies.

What are the tokens used for and how can token value appreciate?

The Lightstreams Network will be an independent Ethereum compliant blockchain, and as a result will operate via its own native token called the Photon Token (PHT).

PHT will be used for:

  • Network transaction fees – Sending tokens, storing files, and other network functions.
  • Purchasing content on the Lightstreams Network.
  • Network governance – Voting on proposals and new authority nodes in the Proof of Authority (PoA) consensus mechanism.

DApps building on top of the Lightstreams Network will be able to issue their own tokens using ERC20 or similar contracts.

Similar to Ethereum, the value of PHT token depends on how much adoption and usage the Lightstreams Network has.

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Lightstreams has a team of 6 and the biographies of key team members are listed below:

Michael Smolenski, CEO – Michael worked as a Software Engineer at Goldman Sachs, Solutions Architect at Westpac Bank, and Blockchain Engineer at MotionWerk. He is also the author of the OMOS Whitepaper, and founder of several start-ups.

Nick Brown, Business Development – Nick has 22 years of experience in the technology industry, specializing in cloud services and distributed systems. He was the CTO of MotionWerk before joining Lightstreams.

Lukas Lukac, Blockchain Engineer – Technical lead and software developer specializing in the development of distributed and decentralized applications. Lukas has worked as the Technical Development Lead at Trivago and Full Stack Developer at TiltBook.

Advisors for Lightstreams include Chris Moore of OP Financial Group, John Bettiol, Head of Organizational Solutions at Trivago, and Dimitry De Jonghe, Co-Founder of Ocean Protocol, among others.


  • Lightstreams aims to have the capability for permissioning access to protected content, which is very useful for sharing copyright content. If the project gains traction and becomes successful, the potential can be substantial. 
  • As Lightstreams is a fork of Ethereum, they share the same codebase. It should be easy for Ethereum dApps to be ported over to Lightstreams should they choose to do so.


  • The project was actually suspended for a few months. We do not find any development on GitHub after the white paper was finished.
  • On the scalability side, it looks like Lightstreams is just taking Ethereum and changing the consensus mechanism to POA. This way, the platform is sacrificing decentralization by having fewer nodes in exchange for higher scalability.
  • The project is designed for dApps that require speed and privacy. However, it doesn’t seem like much effort has been made to attract dApps to be built on the Lightstreams platform.
  • The future development roadmap is vague (less than 20 words) and did not provide any milestone from 2019 and onward. It is difficult to gauge the level of planning the team has surrounding the project.


Our thoughts of the tokens for short term and long term are as follows:

For short-term holding: C

The project has a relatively low hard cap for a blockchain protocol project and has generated high market awareness. However, the team is undecided as to whether they will issue a placeholder ERC-20 token which can be exchanged for mainnet tokens or distribute tokens directly once mainnet is launched (currently scheduled in early Q4 2018).

If the team chooses the first option (issuing a placeholder token), then the turnaround time would be much quicker. We would be positive about the short-term potential in this case.

If they go for the latter option (distributing mainnet tokens directly when the network launches), then there would be a few month lag between the date of contribution and the date of receiving mainnet tokens. In addition, this does not take into account the time it takes for the mainnet PHT tokens to be integrated and listed on exchanges. We have a neutral view for short-term if this is the option that the team chooses.

For long-term holding: C

The idea of the project was conceived and developed more than one year ago during last year’s Consensus Hackathon. However, the team suspended the development and waited until one year later to conduct an ICO to continue the project. This does not speak well to the team’s enthusiasm for the project and for this reason, we are neutral about the chance that the project will be a success.

For more information about the ICO, please visit the following links:

* The information contained in this article is for education purpose only and not financial advice. Do your own research before making any investment decisions.

This article is contributed by Victor Lai with the help of our intern Kieran O'Day.

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