The advent of Ethereum gave a hike to the idea that smart contracts were a part of the world of cryptocurrency in the first instance. That brought about decentralized applications (dApps) are the software that operates automatically without top-down supervision of any single business or person.
However, what dApps provided in terms of innovation was supported by various speculation-based use cases that can be described as opportunistically optimistic at best and skeptical at the worst.
Some readers might remember the flood of ICOs in 2017 that included promises of dApps targeting diverse industries, but only a few were ever realized. Some of these projects were aimed at tokenizing the global sector of dentistry (Dentacoin) as well as a project created to provide people with money to care for the graves of relatives who have passed away (TombCare) as well as one dedicated, simply, for garlic bread (Garlicoin).
Many of the projects with more practical applications failed in the end, like GetGemz (GEMZ), a social messaging application that lets people Exchange and sends bitcoin. The truth is, few companies emerged from the euphoria of the ICO hype with their image in good shape, but some did defy this trend and are still thriving after four years.
One of the great prominent examples of these is Kyber Network, an Exchange decentralized (DEX) technology that allows the direct exchange of one crypto token into another. Kyber Network’s KNC token has exploded up to 800 percent in the last quarter of 2019. It has made it one of the most popular DEX protocols, despite the uncertain days of the Covid-19 epidemic in 2020, as its value increased by more than three times its token value.
The ability to eliminate unproductive projects was the shaky market slowdown during the cryptocurrency winter of 2018, where over 87 percent was removed from the market cap in just one year. Many poor projects lose as much as 100 percent value. This was primarily due to the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Howie Test on (utility) tokens.
In the opinions of the public, this was a sign that the tokenization process of the cryptocurrency market was failing.
Behind the scenes, developers were still building. This development process has intensified in the last few years. The market for dApps which was valued at $10.5 billion in 2019, is now predicted to be worth $368 billion in 2027. Investors and users have experienced the advantages of decentralized applications that offer transparency, independence, reliability, and autonomy. The need for speedier, more user-friendly versions of these apps is driving the global market for dApps as I type this.
In 2020 the cryptocurrency market was beginning to recover rapidly. Its growing success has attracted attention from many well-known institutions like MicroStrategy’s Michael Saylor, Twitter’s Jack Dorsey, and Tesla’s Elon Musk. When these prominent figures started to invest in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as the global market was growing, more attention was attracted by the cryptocurrency market, culminating in all-time prices of bitcoins, Ethereum, and a variety of other cryptocurrencies.
As per Bas Roos, Bistroo’s CEO, the peer-to-peer food and beverage marketplace Bistro, Ethereum will continue to be the dominant Defi platform for the foreseeable future “With an EVM (Ethereum Virtual Machine) increasing in popularity as the norm in dApps as well as Smart Contract development applications based on Solidity will emerge shortly, opening the way for the next generation of web 3.0 businesses.
“In this environment, there is constant development in crucial aspects like decentralization security and scalability. There have been massive developments at the layer-1 scale, but layers two solutions in the area. These advancements allow for greater access to the market and real-world acceptance, but layer-1 is still going through its complicated improvement process, which will open up opportunities for new applications built on the EVM and disrupt conventional business models across different industries. Over the next few years.”
NFTs Crash the Crypto Party
In the summer of last year, an entirely new trend began to surface in the cryptosphere: the non-fungible currency (NFT) market. The NFT market was sparked by a myriad of celebrity endorsements and collaborations that the NFT market emerged as the most popular new phase of the cryptocurrency industry, and its global total was able to surpass the value of the ICO trend that was popular just a few years ago.
Globally, the NFT marketplace value is estimated at $33 billion, and the daily trading volume is more than $3 billion. The rapid growth of the NFT sector has meant that the word “NFT” has come to be synonymous with the cryptocurrency market as a whole, which means that we’re right between”the “era of the NFT.”
GFT Exchange (GFX) is the organization that launched the first promotion for a movie by NFT in May of 2018, along with 20th Century Fox and Atom Tickets, releasing a limited edition Deadpool 2 digital poster to advertise the film. The signs were accessible through Opensea.io through their GFT exchange. GFTX will shortly announce the launch of its new Exchange to establish the best practices and make it easier to standardize KYC, AML, and counter-party risk management.
“This NFT phenomenon is just a glance of what is yet to come” According to Mitch Chait, co-founder GFTX, “NFT art and collectibles are an aspect in the process of creating value. It’s also the most straightforward for both consumers and investors to comprehend.
“The larger opportunity is making use of NFT’s unique and neutral characteristics to redefine the way we do business. We’ll begin to witness the development of investment products that are available to more people and the getting value chains out of the way by removing the opaque slow-moving and expensive middlemen and removing the requirement for what we call “critical service” to open, disclose and finish the transactions. This new pattern is here, and for those that can nuzzle it today and act, they will certainly add competitive advantages and capture benefits.”
There are still waves to be made in this emerging area, as evidenced in the latest launch of MekaVerse, which is an NFT gaming project centered around “mecha” robots that were made famous by well-known Japanese manga and anime comics. In the shortest period of just two weeks after MekaVerse was launched, it has picked up more than 139 million in trading volume, making it the 13th most-traded NFT collection to date.
The headhunters and recruiters within the blockchain sector are getting overwhelmed with requests from clients to recruit specialists within NFT, decentralized financial (Defi) along with the NFT space, and more money and interest flow into the field.
“Fundamentally, NFTs starts real ownership over digital assets and can be used and aside freely in ways that were not possible before,” Darius Kozlovskis of the Drops platform Drops lets users take out loans from their Defi and NFT portfolios. “NFTs allow the development of games that earn you money, and the sports and entertainment companies increasingly view them as an exciting new way of interacting with the fans. A whole ecosystem is built around these tokens, and as we see the rise of metaverses, we’re likely to see a greater adoption soon.”
Jonas Hudson, the co-founder of GFTX, says, “Mobility will take the initiative to make crypto more accessible and blockchain by allowing anyone to have an NFT or take part in DeFi. Telcos and handset makers will not have to choose what blockchain to use for trading in assets to be used in various ways. Blockchain’s DNA doesn’t rest on one platform. Instead, it’s a flexible and decentralized collection of systems that operate in harmony.”
Here Comes the Ethereum Killers
Etheruem’s revolutionary smart contracts have sparked an entire dApp phenomenon. However, today many applications are beginning to fill the gaps left in the market due to Ethereum’s limitations. Since 2017, there have been numerous instances where the cost of conducting business with Ethereum is beyond the budget, even for the most sensible dApp creators. Increased gas costs have prevented multiple users from engaging with dApps at a basic scale.
The first NFT projects to be launched was before the boom of 2020, but it didn’t last long enough to see the emergence of the new trend that it was hoping to establish. CryptoKitties was a trading game launched in the early part of 2017 and introduced the majority of the features that we see today in current NFT releases. However, by the winter of the same year, the high gas prices on Ethereum caused it to be challenging to carry out basic transactions on the dApp, which effectively sunk the project to fail. After the demise of CryptoKitties, the project, there was little mention of the word “NFT” in the following years.
The technical flaws that plagued CryptoKitties’s development have mostly been eliminated. New projects have emerged from the underlying soup of the crypto market to fill in the gaps left by Ethereum’s early efforts. Even Ethereum has attempted to fix its shortcomings by implementing a variety of technological improvements.
Most notable are Cardano (ADA), A project that was carefully conceived over several years by those same group members involved in the development of Ethereum and is now beginning to live up to its promises.
Cardano’s low-cost fees and intuitive user interface have led it to grow into a suitable platform for dApps in recent times, as shown by a few of the newest projects that use this Cardano blockchain to be their foundation of decentralized operations. There are projects like the stable coin hub, and DEX Ardana is the first app launched on the Cardano network.
“Not only can existing & tested Defi use cases to be implemented, but Cardano’s novelties allow new DeFi use cases to be created,” is the statement from Ardana’s CEO and founder Ryan Matovu.
“For instance, Cardano users interacting with ADA the token used by the network can engage with intelligent contracts without removing their ADA and thus continue to get native staking reward. We’ve made the most of this by establishing vaults, and as such, Ardana users who own CDPs of ADA that have stablecoins minted to them can continue to earn Staking rewards even though their collateral remains locked. This means they will benefit from the staking reward as a kind in loan subsidies.
“I think that similar changes in the future will cement Cardano as not only one of the most safe and decentralized blockchains out there, but also as one that has many influential and nuanced utilized cases, which will surely lead to the creation of Defi products that few could have foreseen,” Motovu says.
That doesn’t mean Cardano could be the sole possible Ethereum-killer that could be vying for its crown. There’s also the sharded system Polkadot created by Dr. Gavin Wood, one of the founders of Ethereum and the creator of the Solidity programming language. A series that makes the interoperable blockchain of ‘parachains’ shaped like tentacles connected to the Relay Chain and auctions will decide which projects can be the dominant players in its DeFi playfield.
Hudson is primarily focused on a high level of value for NFTs as well as apps that are designed for users and provide an enlightened viewpoint by stating that “What’s frequently overlooked is that billions of public across the globe haven’t been exposed to blockchain or an NFT and, when they finally make the leap into the world of blockchain, they will not worry about Ethereum, Cardano or whatever new blockchain is handling the technology that underlies it.
“All most users care about is the ease of use and functionality to get the job they want to be done, with an implied degree of trust that platform is authentic and secure, and their data is safe. The fight for layer 1 & 2 protocols will be buried under the technological rug in the average consumer’s eyes, and these different protocols will be more like Azure, Google, and AWS hosting services. If you ask the normal user if they care who hosts their content or online activity today, they probably won’t even know / care, as long as it works and offers a fulfilling experience.”
We’ve come quite a way since the euphoric era that was the ICO boom of 2017. The quality protocols have been implemented in record numbers, and the networks have been hugely improved. All of it has been done without the influence of government policymakers or traditional financial service companies, or the capital markets in the amount of $3 billion.
In the digital asset and crypto sector, from Wall Street banks to global supply chains and consumer brands will be driving both the standards and rapid adoption by consumers of these digital solutions and products that are becoming integrated into Web 3.0. This is all in a field that is just over ten years older. Prospects are brighter for everything digital.