Bitcoin SV Hackathon finalists announced – A look at the top 3 projects

By Jamie McKane Published: August 24, 2021
BSV Hackathon top 3

Bitcoin Association has announced the top three finalists for the 4th Bitcoin SV Hackathon, narrowing down the competition from the six semi-finalists that were shortlisted last week. The competition began on June 14 and saw participants working throughout an extended virtual coding round of six-weeks that allowed them to build more viable and complete products than in earlier Hackathon events.

The theme for this year’s Hackathon is ‘peer-to-peer’ (P2P) applications, with competitors tasked with building an application or service on the BSV blockchain that leverages the recently released SPV Channels solution as well as the Merchant API (mAPI). After an extensive evaluation of the submitted projects, the judges have selected three finalists from the shortlist of semi-finalists.

The selected finalists are as follows:

  • CATN8 – Marcel Gruber, Dave Foderick, Thor
  • Bitcoin Phone – Joe Thomas
  • TKS Pnt – Meta Taro

Each of these projects demonstrates the unique and powerful capabilities of the BSV blockchain and the original Bitcoin protocol, leveraging the utility of SPV Channels, microtransactions, tokenisation and more to build viable early implementations of cutting-edge blockchain applications.

This year’s theme was especially challenging, but entrants have excelled in their implementation of cutting-edge technologies to build an impressive array of applications. We have explored each of these projects and how they aim to fulfil the ‘peer-to-peer’ theme of this year’s Hackathon.



CATN8 – created by Marcel Gruber from Canada, Dave Foederick from the United States and Thor – is a micropayment-based online video streaming platform which offers a fully featured SPV wallet implementation.

Referred to as the ‘Money Button of video players’ by its creators, the project sources its inspiration from section eight of the Bitcoin white paper to realise the full potential of the BSV blockchain to empower the Internet of the future. CATN8 is designed as an SPV streaming wallet, a monetised video player and a streaming media server, the entire structure of which is based on the Bitcoin protocol.

This enables the project to offer secure data delivery and routing for video streaming content, as well as integrated micropayments on the BSV digital ledger. The service had to overcome numerous challenges in realising its true SPV implementation, including the construction of mechanisms to maintain and update a list of block headers, and the design of an SPV wallet that maintains proofs and generates transactions.



Bitcoin Phone was created by Joe Thomas from Canada as an early implementation of a new Voice-over-Bitcoin (VoB) protocol that allows participants on the BSV blockchain to conduct live voice chats through the propagation of Bitcoin transactions. The protocol can broadcast voice data over the Bitcoin network by leveraging the non-finality of nSequence to enable close to real-time data streaming.

Voice data is wrapped in a non-finalised Bitcoin transaction that is then broadcasted to the network. Listeners use a bloom filter set to receive the data, unwrap the transaction and play the audio data directly through their speakers. This protocol mirrors the simplicity and functionality of the ubiquitous Voice-over-Internet Protocol (VoIP) while also offering the full functionality and security of the Bitcoin protocol.

Bitcoin Phone is enabled by the unique characteristics of the BSV blockchain – namely its ability to quickly propagate and process transactions with large data payloads for minimal transaction fees.

In his testing, Thomas conducted the first-ever phone call over the Bitcoin protocol, the evidence of which was recorded in numerous transactions written to the BSV digital ledger. The development of Bitcoin Phone required the creation of an impressive array of modules which handle all aspects of the broadcast and listening actions of the protocol.



TKS Pnt, created by Meta Taro in Japan, is a point tokenisation system for use by merchants and their customers. Catering for the wide array of token systems being implemented on the BSV blockchain, TKS Pnt offers a portal for accessing these points and tokens collectively.

Points systems offered by various merchants can be integrated within the TKS Pnt application, where they are collected with the user’s other points and tokens. The app uses mAPI to communicate with miners when uploading the transaction history of points to the BSV blockchain.

The TKS Pnt application includes the transaction history of point transactions as well as a way to contact various service providers if needed. Points can also be spent and received from within the application itself, with these transactions being written to the BSV blockchain.

Merchants can integrate their services into the application directly, offering informative store pages and the ability to integrate with other storefronts or services through the TKS Pnt service.


Judging and prizes

Now that the three finalists have been selected, they will compete for a share of a USD $100,000 prize pool, paid in BSV – $50,000 for first place, $30,000 for second, and $20,000 for third.

The three finalists will be invited to present their projects at the upcoming CoinGeek New York conference, October 5 – 7. The Hackathon Final Round presentations will take place on October 5, with winners announced on October 7. Final placings will be determined by a combination of a final round judging panel and audience voting.

The 4th Bitcoin SV Hackathon is run by Bitcoin Association in partnership with leading enterprise blockchain research and development firm nChain, with sponsorship provided by digital currency conglomerate CoinGeek.

Stay up to date with the latest news on the official Bitcoin SV Hackathon website.