A platform is a type of blockchain or distributed ledger technology (DLT) that enables users to interact with applications, data, and other users in a secure environment. It allows developers to create decentralized applications (DApps) and smart contracts without requiring the need for servers or hosting providers. This makes it easier for companies and organizations to use DLT-based services such as payments, asset management, identity verification, among others.
The main characteristics of platforms include scalability, decentralization, security, privacy protection and interoperability between different blockchains. Platforms are typically built using an open source protocol which allows anyone to access the codebase and develop on top of it in order to build their own projects from scratch. Examples of popular platforms include Ethereum — the first general purpose platform released on 2015 — and EOSIO which was launched two years later providing developers with better performance than Ethereum while allowing them to write more efficient code when building dApps.
Some platforms also feature sidechain technology in order to improve scalability by transferring transactions off the main chain into separate ones that offer faster speeds at lower costs while still having all its contents linked back securely with the root chain through cryptographic algorithms like Merkle trees or hash functions such as SHA256. Additionally there are some hybrid solutions where only certain types of transactions can be moved onto sidechains while keeping those related directly with token transfers within the root network for greater availability and trustworthiness across exchanges & wallets outside its ecosystem if required by DApp owners/users.
Platforms provide businesses & organizations with a wide range of features including but not limited to: decentralized storage systems; high transaction throughput; low latency; customizable consensus protocols; compliance-ready architecture; smart contract execution environments & sophisticated API integrations capabilities among many others depending on each project’s specific requirements & objectives . All these features make platforms one of most powerful tools available today for developing blockchain based applications quickly & efficiently making them suitable for a vast array of use cases ranging from finance & banking over healthcare down till gaming industry just name few examples thereof!