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What is Polygon (MATIC) and how to use it
What is Polygon (MATIC) and how to use it

Learn about the Polygon network's native token MATIC and how to use it.

Farhan avatar
Written by Farhan
Updated over a week ago


Polygon is a highly performant smart contract platform. MATIC, the fuel of the network, is a cryptocurrency you can buy, sell, trade, and manage in the Wallet. You can also directly interact with Decentralized Apps(DApps) on the Polygon network using the Wallet’s WalletConnect feature.

Table of contents

What is Polygon (MATIC)?

Polygon is a blockchain framework aimed at enhancing the Ethereum network by reducing transaction fees and increasing transaction speed. It accomplishes this through an expanding range of software tools. Among these is the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM)-compatible sidechain called Polygon PoS, which employs Proof-of-Stake (PoS) and features MATIC as its native token. In addition, Polygon is working on various layer-2 solutions for Ethereum, incorporating Optimistic rollups and zero-knowledge proofs.

How does Polygon work?

Polygon's primary objective is to offer a diverse array of software tools to enhance Ethereum's scalability. With the Polygon software development kit (SDK), developers can create decentralized applications (DApps) on sidechains or L2s, all connected to the Ethereum mainnet.

At present, Polygon primarily operates as a sidechain. This sidechain is partially responsible for its own security and employs a PoS consensus mechanism. To participate in the consensus, network users must stake the native MATIC token. PoS has numerous advantages over Proof-of-Work, as used in Ethereum, which is why Ethereum is transitioning from PoW to PoS. Discover more about PoS and its benefits in this article on ETH 2, which highlights the importance of the shift from PoW to PoS.

Polygon is also working on additional scaling solutions, such as zk-rollups and Optimistic rollups. While both technologies rely on Ethereum mainnet for security, they have distinct tradeoffs. Optimistic rollups have a long time to finality, which means transferring cryptoassets from an optimistic rollup back to the main chain could take between 1 and 2 weeks. Conversely, zk-rollups have finality between 10 minutes and 3 hours, but they are CPU intensive and an emerging technology still in deployment.

Polygon's History

Initially known as the Matic Network, Polygon was founded in 2017 in India by Jaynti Kanani, Sandeep Nailwal, Anurag Arjun, and Mihailo Bjelic.

How to create a Polygon wallet

  1. Tap the Funds tab at the bottom of the screen

  2. Select “ADD/IMPORT" and choose "Add new personal wallet"

  3. Select MATIC (Polygon) from the drop-down menu

  4. Enter a name for your wallet then tap "CREATE MATIC WALLET." You’re done!

How can you use Polygon?

Anyone can buy, sell, send, receive, and hold $MATIC in the Wallet. Please see our tutorials on:

Advanced users also have the option to directly interact with Decentralized Apps(DApps) on the Polygon network (via WalletConnect). DApps on Polyong enable DeFi use cases like trading, borrowing and lending, prediction markets, crypto derivatives, synthetic assets, NFTs, and more.


Bridging between Polygon and Ethereum

You can bridge Ethereum cryptoassets from the mainnet to Polygon using the official Polygon PoS bridge. Bridging will usually take between 8 and 10 minutes. After that, you can use do most things you can do on Ethereum such as swap, borrow/lend, and pool liquidity but with lower fees and faster transaction times. Whenever you wish, you can bridge back to the Ethereum mainnet.

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