By Adeola
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Bundlr’s Roadmap Signals Big Things To Come But Is It Overreaching Itself?

Bundlr’s long awaited roadmap revealing its innovations for the next 12 months sent a signal to the Arweave community and the Web3 space that it is focused on better things and that it is a project to watch. It is ambitious and proposes new data solutions and use for blockchain technology.

The roadmap is a series of innovations that will culminate into launching mainnet, releasing its $BNDLR token and mark the beginning of being a fully decentralised network.

Josh Benaron, founder and CEO of Bundlr, highlighted values that had helped Bundlr to be one of the top projects in the Arweave ecosystem in under a year – including building what people want to use and what will help the world. They are also constantly learning and improving; focusing on data; taking a fundamental approach to solving problems.

So we are committed to these as we build our vision [… ] We really like to persevere through whatever situation we are in, he said.

On its roadmap for the next year, Bundlr unveiled six innovations that will be developed beginning from the third quarter of 2022 to the second quarter of 2023. The run will culminate in the full decentralisation of the network and launch of its token.

The road map will begin with a product called PreWeave. It’s a peer-to-peer network which provides temporary storage with an optional permanent backing and removes the complexity many users face when engaging with Web3. Bundlr first made PreWeave known to the public in June. PreWeave acts like a temporary hold for data before its owner chooses to permanently store it.

Benaron said PreWeave was a product of demand from users. Due to statutory regulations in some countries and type of data, holding some data permanently may not protect their users. PreWeave allows data to be held and used temporarily.

It’s just a buffer zone, which gives flexibility to protect and essentially look at data and make sure that the users are still being protected, Benaron said.

For a year, Bundlr has carved a reputation for itself as an enabler of data storage on the blockchain which would make data immutable. Now, it plans a product that would allow data to be mutable. To some in the Web3 ecosystem, Bundlr’s plan would seem like a direct challenge to the essence of blockchain technology. Benaron, referencing his company’s value of building what users desire, said there was a demand for a product that allows data to be mutable.

But essentially, what we are going to be shipping is a way to have updates to data on Bundlr, he said, naming potential users of the product as Web3 gaming and sub NFT companies. “So it’s a really high end and really in demand feature. Fundamentally, this ties back to our mission which is to be this network which provides every data solution you need.”

In the fourth quarter of this year, Bundlr plans to launch its second testnet before it goes mainnet. The first testnet which went live in July and onboarded over 2000 validators was to ensure the network operated seamlessly when it launches into mainnet. Benaron said the second testnet will involve incentivisation and tokens would be allocated.

So this is a massive step closer towards the mainnet and towards full decentralisation. Again, tying into one of our big pillars we focus on is decentralisation, CEO of Bundler said.

Users of Bundlr will be able to pay using fiat currencies beginning from the first quarter of 2023. At the moment, its payment system supports cryptocurrencies. Benaron, who sees this initiative as a useful tool for developers and the system, clarified that Bundlr’s core protocol was not changing, it is only adding a support layer for fiat.

I think a big stepping stone for bringing more developers into Web3 is to have these kinds of bridging technologies, which makes them feel more at home. Acquiring cryptocurrencies is also kind of annoying for some people, annoying for some projects, he also said.

Breaking away from the guaranteed 200 years of data storage on Arweave, Bundlr wants to build a feature that gives users an option to store data for a shorter number of years. The idea, called ‘temporary storage’, will be built from scratch and could be used in jurisdictions where the law requires data to be stored for a specific period of time, Bundlr’s founder said.

Why are we doing this? It’s actually again, something that is being requested. And there are some specific use cases for storing data for an N amount of years. So our focus is building an incentivised temporary storage layer […], Benaron said.

The roadmap would end with Bundlr releasing its token ($BNDLR) and launching into mainnet. For Benaron, the network would become fully decentralised by 2023.

The roadmap is by no means modest; it is ambitious and has left some people wondering whether it would be achievable. But for a project that is somewhat the poster child of Arweave’s potential for growth, it remains to be seen whether success will elude it on the roadmap.

Answering questions about challenges which could come up in the implementation of the roadmap and whether Bundlr has all the challenges figured out, Benaron said he had solutions and designs for the items on the roadmap were figured out but it was not final – it’s just part of the process.

That is what is meant to be a super collaborative, super iterative process. And that’s how the best things are going to be built, he said.

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Adeola is a journalist at Arweave News. As a former freelance journalist, his works were published by Newlines Magazine, The Continent and the Mail and Guardian. He has interest in the intersection of technology and human lives.

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