From PancakeSwap to Axie Infinity—browse our round-up of some of the most popular dApps.
Over the years, decentralized applications, or dApps, have seen a meteoric rise in popularity. Known for their security, transparency and efficiency, dApps are quickly becoming the go-to choice for many crypto enthusiasts. In this article, we take a look at some of the most popular dApps in use today.
Launched in early 2020, PancakeSwap allows users to buy and sell CAKEs, the dApp’s native token, using a variety of cryptocurrencies. Thanks to its decentralized nature, PancakeSwap is able to offer users lower fees and faster transactions than traditional exchanges. The platform provides flexibility for other crypto projects to list their tokens and coins, too. From CAKE to the well-known meme token Shiba Inu—investors have plenty of projects to choose from. Recently, the token’s value surged as it announced a business partnership with renowned crypto exchange, Binance.
Founded in 2014, MakerDAO is dedicated to solving the volatility concerns associated with cryptocurrencies. It is a popular dApp known for its token Dai—a stablecoin pegged to USD. To receive a loan, borrowers provide crypto assets, which are secured in the smart contract, as collateral. Once the loan is repaid, the borrower receives their crypto collateral back.
Launched in 2018, Uniswap is a decentralized cryptocurrency exchange (DEX) built on Ethereum. It uses automated liquidity pools to bring buyers and sellers together without the need for a third party. This makes it possible to trade any ERC20 token (one of the most significant Ethereum tokens which has emerged as the technical standard). It’s very popular for its low gas fees and fast transactions. In April 2021, UNI, the platform’s governance token, was the fourth largest cryptocurrency by market cap on Coinbase with a valuation of over US$18 billion.
Launched in early 2020, Curve is a DEX that allows users to trade a variety of stablecoins in a single pool. It supports major cryptocurrencies, such as BTC and ETH, and stablecoins, such as DAI and USDC. One of its key features is low slippage—meaning that users can get the best prices when trading, as the order book (i.e. the list of buy and sell orders) is always updated in real time. Slippage refers to the difference between the anticipated trading price and the final trading price. Due to cryptocurrency’s volatility, slippage can often be high on exchanges. It’s an automated market maker for stablecoins while also allowing users to lend and borrow cryptocurrency.
5. Yearn Finance
Launched in 2020, Yearn Finance is a platform that boasts a range of DeFi projects and allows users to earn interest on their crypto holdings. Through its core products, Vaults and Earn, it connects users with the best possible returns on their investment by automatically reinvesting and diversifying their assets across different protocols. This way, users don’t have to worry about which platform offers the highest yield—Yearn Finance does it for them. The platform does so by leveraging its own Yearn token (YFI) and a variety of other DeFi projects. It is also a great platform for yield farming. Recently, however, the value of Yearn Finance experienced lows of up to 12 percent, following the surprise exit of two of its key members, Andre Cronje and Anton Nell.
OpenSea is a peer-to-peer marketplace for digital assets, like non-fungible tokens (NFTs). It allows users to buy, sell and trade a variety of digital collectibles, including CryptoKitties, game items and other digital assets. The platform uses blockchain technology to ensure the security and transparency of all transactions. OpenSea has seen its fair share of highs and lows—obtaining a valuation of US$13 billion and coming under fire for insider trading and phishing attacks amounting to losses of over US$1.7 million. Still, with more and more people (celebrities and businesses) looking to launch NFTs, the marketplace is only set to grow this year.
7. Axie Infinity
Axie Infinity is a blockchain game that allows users to raise and battle digital creatures called Axies. The game has quickly gained popularity since its launch in 2018, boasting over 8 million players. Axies, which are NFTs, can be bred and traded on the platform, making it a popular choice for gamers and collectors. In 2021, Axie Infinity was responsible for two-thirds of all NFT transactions in the blockchain gaming industry, amounting to about US$3.5 billion. However, recently, the platform announced a fee hike of 1 percent, which was not well-received by the players.
8. Alien Worlds
Launched in 2020, the blockchain game Alien Worlds grew from 10,000 users to five million in one year. Alien Worlds is a blockchain-based virtual world that allows users to earn rewards by playing games and completing tasks. The platform uses a variety of in-game assets, including the native token, TLM, to reward users for their contributions. In October 2021, the game became the world’s most popular blockchain game, as per a report by DappRadar. With a market cap of over US$99 million, Alien Worlds prides itself on creating an environment where communities can compete against each other and live their lives online.
In the end, the popularity of dApps comes down to their ability to offer users a better experience than traditional centralized apps. Remember that the list above is just a starting point—there are many other great dApps out there to explore!
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