Proof-of-Stake, or PoS, blockchain Qtum successfully completed a hard fork of its testnet in preparation for the launch of its mainnet hard fork.

According to a statement sent to Cointelegraph, the upgrade went live on the testnet at block 625,000 on June 29. This event officially introduced offline staking in Qtum.

Mainnet hard fork to happen in August or at block 680,000

The testnet event – scheduled to start on July 6 – is the last phase before Qtum launches its mainnet hard fork. This is expected to happen on August 28, 2020, or at block height 680,000.

As of press time, Qtum claims that more than 300 network participants have earned almost 1,000 QTUM through staking.

The company details:

“Offline staking is one of the biggest changes to the Qtum protocol to date. Up until now, Qtum has allowed Proof-of-Stake consensus staking only from online nodes that secure and operate the blockchain. As a result, QTUM holders who did not want to run a full node, had security concerns, or struggled to meet the resource and power requirements were unable to participate in staking.”

Patrick Dai, co-founder of Qtum, said that a Testnet Stake-a-Thon will give blockchain enthusiasts a chance to familiarize themselves with concepts such as super stakers, address delegation, “and how easy it can be to participate in the consensus of a global network.” He also added:

"This will empower the community to undertake the same tasks in a realistic setting when the mainnet hard fork goes live in late August, bringing offline staking to the Qtum ecosystem."

Democratizing and securing the network

Qtum states that offline staking will help to increase participation in the staking process. This will help to democratize the network and make it more distributed and secure.

Cointelegraph previously reported that Qtum went through its first-ever hard fork on October 27, 2019. This fork happened at block 466,000, upgrading the Qtum network to unlock a number of significant features including smart contracts and block spacing improvements.