Hello IoTeX Community! This thread provides context on issues some community members are experiencing when converting native IOTX to IOTX-E (ERC20) via ioTube.
ioTube (iotube.org) is a cross-chain bridge that facilitates two-way token swaps between IoTeX and other blockchains, including Ethereum, BSC, and Polygon. To perform token swaps between blockchains, there are various approaches that can be used:
- Lock/Unlock: lock one token (e.g., IOTX) on Blockchain A in order to unlock the corresponding token (IOTX-E) from a liquidity pool on Blockchain B with 1:1 value
- Lock/Mint: lock one token (USDT) on Blockchain A in order to mint a cross-chain version of the token (USDT_b) on Blockchain B with 1:1 value
- Burn/Mint: burn one token (e.g., CYC) on Blockchain A in order to mint a new cross-chain version of the token (CYC) on Blockchain B with 1:1 value
To swap native IOTX to IOTX-E, ioTube uses the Lock/Unlock approach described above. Today, there is more native IOTX in existence than IOTX-E. What this means is if at any time the amount of IOTX-E stored in ioTube goes to zero (i.e., users have locked native IOTX to unlock all available IOTX-E), then the bridge will not be able to complete the swap as there is no more IOTX-E to unlock. On November 3, we experienced this issue for the first time which restricted users’ ability to swap IOTX for IOTX-E. If IOTX-E holders decide to swap back to native IOTX, then IOTX-E will be available in ioTube again for others to swap native IOTX to IOTX-E.
The Lock/Mint and Burn/Mint approaches are used for all other tokens on ioTube. Unlike the Lock/Unlock approach, the Lock/Mint and Burn/Mint approach is not affected by asymmetric balances like the IOTX-to-IOTX-E scenario described above.
If you have any questions, please reach out to an admin on Telegram or Discord.
Additional context on native IOTX vs. IOTX-E: IoTeX first launched as an ERC20 token on Ethereum in 2018. When the IoTeX native blockchain (Mainnet Alpha) was launched in 2019, native IOTX was introduced for the first time. Native IOTX and IOTX-E coexisted until Mainnet GA was launched in 2020 and staking/voting activities on Ethereum were fully migrated to IoTeX blockchain. However, the IOTX-E that was distributed between 2018 and 2019 remained on the Ethereum blockchain, while all native IOTX distributed after 2019 remained on the IoTeX blockchain.