The Monacoin: Japan’s Local Alternative to Bitcoin

Japan is infamous around the world for having a Japanese alternative for quite literally everything. For years, Japanese shunned arguably the most famous social network, Facebook; instead they used the locally developed social network Mixi, which was exclusively available in the region of Japan.Even the famous Apple products and smartphones took their time to take off in Japan because the local population was satisfied with the Internet-connected handsets that they already had.

So it doesn’t come as much of a surprise that an island country with 125 million people and a proprietary language, has a Japanese version of the cryptocurrency that is taking over the world. Bitcoin’s local alternative goes by the name of Monacoin, and it is interestingly enough cat-logoed. Very much like the Bitcoin, the Monacoin shares an interesting yet mysterious story of origin, in the sense that both their founders use pseudonyms; where Bitcoin has Satoshi, Monacoin has Watanabe.

Launched earlier in the March of 2014, the Monacoin is a decentralized open-source platform and peer-to-peer payment network and is dubbed by its creators as “the first Japanese cryptocurrency”. It was first released in the Japanese Internet forum, 2Channel to give thumbs up.

Specs of Monacoin

Monacoin is actually a hard fork of Litecoin and is aiming to improve on its parent’s original model. It uses the Proof-of-Work consensus mechanism and is powered by the Lyra2RE(v2) algorithm, which helps in decentralizing the Monacoin distribution. Monacoin also readjusts its difficulty with every block in order to accomplish this task; the Monacoin employs the Dark Gravity Wave v3 algorithm.

The Monacoin Technology

 The SegWit activation on the MonaCoin network started signaling support to its ecosystem, thus enabling easy transfer of coins. The block size of MonaCoin’s blockchain, however, is limited. This helps with scaling and increasing the transaction speeds.

MonaCoin uses an ASIC resistant Proof-of-Work consensus algorithmwhich gives its users control over the implementation and distribution of any change in the network. Futhermore, users can also verify transactions.

The Scrypt algorithm that Monacoin leverages from Litecoin is easier to execute and helps Monacoin be mineable using a relatively inexpensive PC hardware. It also provides added security to the Monacoin blockchain.

In order to speed up the transactions, it uses a Lightning Network, which forms the second layer of protocols. Every time a block is created, its difficulty level is also changed in order to reduce the load on nodes.

How to Store Monacoin?

Since Monacoin is an altcoin token, it can be stored in various wallets that are supported by Windows, Android, Linux and Mac. However, it cannot be stored on Ethereum wallets because it isn’t an ERC20 token. But you are free to pick up any of the following wallets for MONA storage:

  • The official MonaCoin wallet from its website.
  • The Coinomi Android wallet for MonaCoin on Google Play Store
  • Electrum Mona: Lightweight client

Features of Monacoin


The Proof-of-Work algorithm lets all users mine the Monacoin, thus preventing the centralization of large miners and it also reduces the price volatility. Moreover, the ASIC resistance distributes coins fairly & does not let users mine coins on the basis of higher processing power.


Users have the luxury to carry out secure transactions as the Scrypt algorithm can be used even on a personal computer with graphics processing unit.


Monacoin has a block time of just 1.5 minutes, which is significantly lesser that the10 minutes in Bitcoin. The currency can be sent almost at the speed of light because of the Lightning Network implemented, and also costs far less.

Apparently, the Monacoin hasn’t published a whitepaper.

Abeer Anwaar

Abeer holds a Bachelors degree in Media studies and covers blockchain startups for BlockPublisher. An optimist, excels in the art of the written word and swears by the joy of all things sweet. Contact the editor at editor.startups@blockpublisher.com

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