What is Polygon (MATIC)?


5 mins read May 12, 2023

In today's ever-evolving world of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology, you may have heard about "Polygon" or "MATIC."

Polygon, formerly known as MATIC Network, is a Layer 2 scaling Ethereum enhancing solution. Polygon aims to deliver faster and cheaper transactions while still maintaining security and decentralisation.  

 In this article, we'll explore the fundamentals of Polygon and how it plays a crucial role in addressing some of the most pressing challenges faced by the Ethereum blockchain. 

What Is Polygon (MATIC)?

Polygon, formerly known as MATIC, is a Layer 2 scaling solution for the Ethereum blockchain. It seeks to  support the ever-growing demand for cryptocurrency transactions without compromising speed, cost, or security. 

It aims to achieve this goal by creating applications to run seamlessly on the Ethereum blockchain and prevent delays,  traffic congestion, or high gas fees. It is interoperable and offers a multi-chain scaling solution that uses sidechains to connect its products to the main Ethereum network.

Thus, by adopting Polygon, you can potentially unlock new possibilities for your blockchain projects, while benefiting from advanced scaling solutions and efficient cryptocurrency transactions.

All About MATIC Token and Its Utility

MATIC tokens are central to the Polygon ecosystem, providing various functionalities within the network. As an ERC-20 token, MATIC is compatible with the Ethereum blockchain, ensuring seamless interaction among various applications.

One of the main utilities of MATIC tokens is staking. By staking your tokens, you can participate in securing the network and receive rewards for your contributions. Validators are chosen to produce new blocks and confirm transactions. By staking your tokens, you can become a validator or delegate your tokens to a validator, both of which earn you a share of the transaction fees.

Transaction fees in the Polygon network are payable using MATIC tokens which you can use on various applications and smart contracts on the platform.

How Does Polygon Work?

Now that we understand what Polygon (MATIC) is, it's essential to understand how it functions as well. Polygon exists to address Ethereum's scalability and performance issues by incorporating various of its solutions.

Firstly, Polygon uses the concept of sidechains to increase Ethereum's capacity. Sidechains are separate chains with their own consensus mechanisms that run parallel to the Ethereum network, making transactions faster and cheaper on Ethereum's mainchain.

Another key aspect of Polygon is its use of Plasma chains which allow the creation of child chains branching off from the main Ethereum chain. These child chains process transactions independently before submitting compressed transaction data to the mainchain, ultimately reducing the overall load on the Ethereum network.

Furthermore, Polygon employs zk-rollups, a technology that enables bundling multiple transactions into a single proof, which gets submitted to the Ethereum mainchain. This reduces the transaction fees needed to process all those data.

Lastly, the Polygon ecosystem utilises bridges to enable seamless cross-chain communications between multiple chains. These bridges facilitate the transfer of assets and data across the chains, making cross-chain communication possible.

What makes Polygon Unique?


One of the key factors that make Polygon unique is its scalability. With Polygon, you can benefit from extremely fast and low-cost transactions. This is achieved through its Layer 2 infrastructure, which is designed to handle a vast number of transactions without compromising security.


Polygon aims to provide seamless integration with other compatible networks while maintaining a high level of interoperability. This means you can easily connect your dApps and services on various blockchain ecosystems, giving you even more versatility and convenience in your blockchain activities.

Consensus Mechanism

The underlying consensus mechanism of Polygon is a variant of Proof-of-Stake, specifically known as Heimdall Proof of Stake (H-POS). This consensus model increases security and energy efficiency compared to traditional Proof-of-Work systems. As a user, you can participate in the network by staking MATIC tokens, which enables you to earn rewards and contribute to the network's overall security.

Overview of the Polygon Ecosystem

Decentralised Applications

  • Aave: A decentralised lending platform for earning interest on deposits and borrowing assets
  • QuickSwap: A decentralised exchange enabling users to trade cryptocurrencies with low fees and rapid transaction times
  • SushiSwap: Another decentralised exchange offering liquidity provision, staking, and yield farming opportunities

These platforms and many more contribute to the thriving ecosystem of Polygon, allowing you to explore a wide range of possibilities in the world of decentralised finance.

Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs)

Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) have emerged as a significant use case within the Polygon ecosystem. NFTs represent unique digital items such as art, collectables, and virtual real estate that can be traded on the blockchain. Polygon's ability to support fast and inexpensive transactions makes it an attractive platform for NFT marketplaces and creators. Some notable NFT projects on Polygon include:

  • OpenSea: A marketplace for various digital items, including art, domain names, and virtual goods
  • Decentraland: A virtual world where you can create, explore, and trade digital assets and virtual land
  • Zed Run: A virtual horse racing game where you can own, breed, and race digital horses

In summary, the Polygon ecosystem provides you with a comprehensive suite of decentralised applications and NFT opportunities that enable a seamless experience for you. 

The Future of Polygon 

As you delve deeper into the world of Web 3.0, you'll notice that Polygon (MATIC) plays a crucial role in shaping the future of blockchain technology. With its aim to create a more scalable and efficient Ethereum-compatible network, Polygon is set to have a significant impact on various industries.

Disclaimer: This article is meant to provide general guidance and understanding of cryptocurrency and the Blockchain network. It’s not an exhaustive list and should not be taken as financial advice. Yellow Card Academy is not responsible for your investment decisions.

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