Helium DAO – HIP 51-53

Table of Contents

What is a DAO?

DAO stands for decentralized autonomous organization, which means that ownership and decision-making are spread between each individual shareholder. Traditionally, the rules of a DAO are made into smart contracts that are public and easy to access. These contracts lay the groundwork for what is possible to accomplish within the DAO. The Helium DAO will be very similar to traditional DAOs where coin holders will hold voting power equal to their share of Helium tokens compared to the total amount held.

Understanding the new Helium Ecosystem

Through the use of HIP 52-53, Helium will create the first two subsections of its DAO. Creating subsections is important and useful because Helium will soon have subDAOs for LoRaWAN, WiFi, and 5G. The decision-makers (coin holders) for one sub-section might not be knowledgeable or even care much about another sub-section. This differentiation is the key to a thriving network.

One of the most important takeaways from HIP 51-53 is the fact that each subDAO will have its own coin, effectively splitting HNT into multiple projects that will act independently of each other under one umbrella. Another (even more) exciting feature is the fact that this is laying the groundwork for people to build their own DNPs (Decentralized Network Protocols) on the Helium network via the open-source nature of the Helium DAO network.

Why break apart Helium?

There are a few reasons why splitting Helium into several sub-sections is a good idea, for starters, scalability. With the different networks built on the Helium blockchain, it only makes sense to let them scale at their own pace. For example, the 5G platform could be undergoing maintenance while the LoRaWAN network continues to run smoothly. Without subsections, this wouldn’t be possible.

Smart contracts governing each subsection also provide endless possibilities to add to the network, which we believe is the end goal for Helium.

The ability to add a subsection to the Helium network is huge for advancing the network but also promises some tangible real-world solutions to be built on the platform beyond what is even possible in today’s market.

Helium intends on being a network of networks built on the blockchain, governed by its shareholders. Without the ability to add to this network, it wouldn’t last forever. Allowing the ecosystem to evolve and grow is the ultimate future-proofing tactic that will undoubtedly have a massive impact, especially as technology and the needs of the ecosystem evolve over time.


Phase I: In Q2 2022 the MOBILE token will go live on the existing Helium blockchain. This will be the start of rewards of 5G Hotspots (as per HIP 53). Soon after the implementation of HIP 53, the second phase will go live (August 1st.) This phase will be the start of HIP 52 and the IOT token will be born.

Once these two HIPs are live, Helium will give coin holders the option to swap their MOBILE and IOT tokens for HNT (optional).

Under HIP 51, Helium operates as a network of networks. With great power comes great responsibility, this is why veHNT was born. veHNT stands for vote-escrowed HNT and serves as the voting mechanism for the network. People will use veHNT for three main objectives.

  1. DAO Utility Score Curation – Coin holders can utilize veHNT for increasing the emissions associated with specific subDAOs, thus increasing the value of said subDAO.
  2. New Subnetwork Proposals – Since Helium is now acting as a network of networks, it needs a way for people to vote on which new subnetworks will join the ecosystem.
  3. Helium DAO proposals – This mechanism will allow all the parameters of subnetworks along with the communications architecture to be voted on, similarly to how HIPs work currently.

Here is a breakdown of how veHNT will be distributed – as you can see, the longer you “lock up” HNT, the more voting power you will have. This system is very similar to staking, but for votes instead of additional tokens.

Tokens will be subDAO specific, however, they can be traded for HNT at any time.

Closing remarks

Helium will still be Helium, but there will be many more avenues to participate and earn revenue. This marks an exciting new future for helium as a network of networks, this is only the beginning!

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