Free TON achieved mainnet status
in December 2020 after reaching “sufficient decentralization,” or more than 400 validators and decentralized autonomous organizations. The project was originally launched in May 2020
as an infrastructure solutions provider for the Telegram Open Network. When a New York federal court put an injunction on the Telegram team, preventing further development of the network, Free TON emerged as an independent project that finalized the initial Telegram code and built the TON Operating System.
As Cointelegraph previously reported, Free TON merged with Dune Network
in February — a move that both camps said would support wider adoption of blockchain technology and decentralized governance. The merger is expected to be finalized later this year, following the full allocation of TON Crystals (TON) to the Dune Network.