Let’s start off with a disclaimer: the future will be multichain and crosschain with many winners, losers, and strange participants who just stick around.
Today we’ll be making the case that Solana, an emerging Layer 1 blockchain, is quickly being chosen as the “default” blockchain when it comes to multichain and large-scale cryptocurrency projects.
Let’s Be Brave with DeFi
You can read more about their relationship on the Brave partners with Solana article on Brave.com. Our important takeaway from that article includes the following: “Brave will integrate the Solana blockchain into the Brave browser, providing default Solana ecosystem support to Brave’s 42 million monthly active users and 1.3 million verified Creators. Brave will soon default to Solana for cross-chain and Solana native DApps.”
Let’s Be Social Globally
If the news about Brave isn’t enough to sell you on Solana’s upcoming default status, let’s have a chat about another upcoming market sector, web3 social media. This user-first, decentralized and permissionless dream social platform is being built out by many small and large development teams. What those teams need to scale include funding and a platform to scale on. Solana can be a perfect platform for web3 social, especially compared to other blockchains with smart contracts, due to very affordable transaction fees (under 1 penny USD), and a goal to make them cheaper over time. No one would want to pay a even $1 transaction fee when tipping a friend $0.50 in crypto for a good social post, or perhaps paying to share, or any other social mechanic at scale with crypto pretty much falls apart when you look at high transaction fees. This is likely one of the main reasons Reddit cofounder Alexis Alohan has picked Solana for his web3 Social media $50 million investment. That investment was matched by Raj Gokal, cofounder of Solana, via the Solana Ventures fund, bringing the investment in social web3 on Solana to an impressive $100 million.
“Solana fees are $0.00025 per transaction, but they fluctuate over time. The fees are set by the competition for block-space, which increases when the traffic on the blockchain increases. Compared to Ethereum, Solana has 60 thousand times lower fees. This is because of the high scalability of Solana compared to Ethereum. As Solana keeps scaling better, the fees will decrease even more in the future.” – Solberg Invest
We have even already seen Solana based web3 social apps being tested in the wild, such as sosol – https://sosol.app/ (pictured below) It will be a very exciting space to watch and you can’t help but imagine what reddit would have been like it karma points had a cryptocurrency behind them at the birth of the platform. Lots of interesting questions and propositions develop when intertwining incentive-based content creation or moderation, or voting/sorting in reddit’s case.
Let Us Game
Our last point resides in a market and venue we know well, gaming! I love video games of all types, from my first Atari, to the NES, to the Playstation, Dreamcast, Gamecube, then Xbox, PS3, and PC gaming throughout many of those console eras. Now we have the new VR and AR gaming, as well as our favorite, blockchain gaming. One of the misconceptions gamers have about blockchain gaming is that it is simply a way for game companies to milk more money out of them via crypto. While we can’t promise this won’t happen, and likely it will at times, we want to stress that will only be a small portion of the capability of blockchain and cryptocurrency gaming. As an example, play to earn games like Axie Infinity have shown to be profitable for many thousands of players, especially at a global level of economic incentive and return. Axie Infinity had scaling issues though, and had to quickly (and likely at high cost) develop and migrate users to a Ronin sidechain L2 off their native Ethereum.
With Solana, games that integrate NFTs, or pay out in cryptocurrency tokens can perform at acceptable speeds, at an acceptable network cost (fees called “gas” or “rent” in blockchains) First we look at the speed of transaction from blockchain to user wallet, and we can see that Solana has some serious advantages compared to other leading blockchain technology. With under 1 second transaction time, an average of about .4 second transaction latency, as well as transactions per second (TPS) of over 65k, Solana can deliver in-game rewards without waiting up to 5 minutes for confirmation (Ethereum) or even up to 2 min for layer 2 solutions (Polkadot), or up 10 minutes (Cardano, Bitcoin) Anything over a few seconds from transaction start to confirmation finality will be a horrible user experience and interrupt the engagement and focus of the game. Why with web3 and new technology would we want to reintroduce loading screens and waiting times? Seems backwards and we think the user will demand more, and gravitate towards those games with better user experiences.
Next let’s look at network fees, referred too as “gas fees” on Ethereum and other blockchains, and called “rent” on Solana. Network fees on blockchains range from $0.0015 (Solana) to $0.01 (Binance Smart Chain) to $0.25 (Cardano) to $1 (Polkadot) to $15 (Ethereum) Obviously fees over $1 make many transactions of micropayments and microrewards unfeasable. I would even arge that even pennies per transaction, such as Cardano, Polkadot, and Avalanche, are limiting to global adoption of any ingame economy. If you’re getting paid pennies or $0.25 for an in-game action, how would it make sense to pay $.25 or $1 fees? Or even $0.01 could be a limiting factor if the payment is only $0.05, which could be the case in some economies of scale. These factors explain why Solana Ventures, Forte, Griffin are investing $150 million in blockchain gaming. In addition, we’re seeing games like Aurory and Star Atlas, using SPL tokens (cryptocurrencies on Solana blockchain) gaining huge amounts of community funding via NFT projects as well as outside investors. Some may say they have chosen Solana as the future default blockchain for cryptocurrency integrated gaming.
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