Twitter founder Jack Dorsey’s Square Crypto has announced that they will be developing a Software Development Kit (SDK) for Bitcoin’s Lightning Network layer 2 scaling solution. A software development kit is a standardized set of tools for developers that allows them to easily build projects for a specific software framework.
After months of discussion with the open-source Lightning Network development community, Square has decided to focus on creating an API, language bindings, demo apps, and anything else that makes integrating Lightning easy, secure and convenient for open source developers.
Square’s Lightning SDK API (application programming interface) will be written in Rust, a very fast and secure programming language with minimal dependencies, and based on the Rust-Lightning project. Square has plans to work hand-in-hand with existing Lightning implementations like Acinq, Blockstream, and Lightning Labs along with the wider open-source community to streamline Lightning Network development and wallet integration.
Square’s goals for the Lightning SDK include providing plug and play Lightning Network capabilities for existing Bitcoin wallets, supporting multi-device or multi application access to an existing wallet, and integrating new features like wallet state backups to a cloud service, and also making it easy for wallet developers to decide the best way to make tradeoffs in UX, security, and privacy with things like implementing Partially Signed Bitcoin Transactions (PSBTs).
This exciting Lightning SDK announcement comes on the heels of Dorsey’s recent investment in Bitsika, an African Bitcoin app startup, which just recently hit a million dollars in transactions in only 4 months. Dorsey has announced plans to spend several months in Africa this year to study the Bitcoin market opportunities on the continent. Dorsey believes that the developing world will be much more vital for widespread Bitcoin adoption than developed Western nations.
He has a point, as African economies are home to 1.2 billion people, many who do not have access to basic financial services or banking options. In much the same way that cell phone adoption and penetration has eclipsed traditional telecommunications infrastructure in developing nations, Dorsey believes that Bitcoin adoption could eclipse the traditional financial system’s inroads in African nations.
Dorsey has also been in the headlines in the last few months for publicly endorsing the Lightning Network, and hiring cryptocurrency developers to implement the Lightning Network into his Square payment service. The Lightning SDK is the first major announcement since Square began development work on the Lightning Network. Square’s plans are to make the Lightning Network accessible and easy to use so that instant cash-like payments become commonplace online.