Helium Improvement Proposal 74: It’s going to be end of helium if HIP 74 Passes? Vote configuration is handled by the Helium Foundation to ensure that the accrued DC from a vote are burned from existance at the end of the voting period

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Helium Improvement Proposal 74: It’s going to be end of helium if HIP 74 Passes? Community Voting is here – What You Need to Know About It

For the Helium 5G network to be successful, it must meet reliability and availability standards expected by its users. To meet this goal, MOBILE Proof-of-Coverage (PoC) rewards have evolved and now include radio uptime data and backhaul speed tests to ensure better network reliability.

However, in its current state MOBILE PoC is limited to rewarding radios that show consistent proof of life without taking into consideration the coverage provided. HIP 74 is the first step towards rewarding network builders for the quality of coverage they provide.

In order to do this, HIP 74 proposes an additional layer to calculate MOBILE rewards based on modeled coverage. Modeled coverage uses obstruction data to simulate how a radio’s placement will affect its signal propagation by accounting for environmental factors that could block a signal’s path such as dense trees, buildings, or walls. This ensures that network builders are rewarded for providing high quality coverage and incentivizes future network builders to consider providing coverage where it is most useful.

HIP 74 is currently in draft and undergoing community feedback. Read the full draft of HIP 74 here.


The next step to ensure network builders are rewarded for creating high quality network coverage is to add modeled coverage data as a new PoC layer.

Who’s impacted:

This HIP impacts 5G Hotspot owners and anyone that uses the Helium 5G network.

What you need to know:

  • How this will affect rewards
  • How this data will be displayed

Changes to Rewards

Reward changes are proposed in two categories: hex updates and changes to the rewards algorithm.

Hex Updates

The Helium Network is represented by hexagons (hexes). These hexes identify where coverage exists and which network builders should be rewarded.

Given the unique radio characteristics, HIP 74 proposes the Helium 5G network use smaller hexes (a bit larger than your typical single family home) than those used for the IoT network to best assess the level of coverage in a particular hex and identify which radios are providing it so rewards can be distributed accordingly.

With the modeled coverage data layer and the reduced hex resolution, radios can earn rewards for providing coverage to hexes they’re physically located in as well as adjacent hexes. This decouples the device’s physical location from its signal strength and propagation.

In addition to changing the size of the hexes to better suit radio characteristics, HIP 74 proposes that hex utility be expanded to show locations that have wireless coverage rather than simply identifying Hotspot locations.

Rewards Algorithm Changes

Only the top performing radios providing coverage in a given hex will be eligible to earn rewards, capped at 5 indoor radios and 5 outdoor radios. In order to qualify, radios will need to meet all Proof-of Coverage requirements, and signal strength will be the main factor used to identify the top 5.

If more than 5 radios have the same high signal strength, the duration of deployment (how long the radio has been providing coverage) will determine which radios qualify for the top 5. This change rewards radio deployers for their early contributions to building the network.

Once the top radios are determined, heartbeats, speed tests, and the modeled signal strength of each covered hex are used to determine the amount of MOBILE earnings for each radio.

Data Visualization

As mentioned above, HIP 74 proposes that hexes be used to show locations that have wireless coverage. This data would be used to build a new Explorer dedicated specifically to the Helium 5G network to represent the real world coverage in each hex, specifically signal strength. This will help network builders optimize their setups and overall ensure that we as a community are on the same page about our progress in building out useful coverage on the network.

Next Steps

HIP 74 is a key step towards the success of the Helium 5G network. While the HIP is in draft mode, the Core Devs Team is taking feedback from the community before finalizing and submitting it to a vote.

Join the conversation on HIP 74 by submitting your questions here.


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