We are in a very exciting time for the crypto industry. Forget about the prices - they’re going up and down quite a bit as if waiting for some big moment where it can happily sit at a much higher stable bottom.
No, what's really interesting about the crypto market right now is that there are several projects that are on the cusp of going to the big leagues. This is the subject of our discussion today.
Ripple’s XRP token and its products are all primarily aimed at cross-border payments, which are currently very expensive and time consuming. It’s basically more for financial institutions than anything, but it’s target use cases are perfect. While competitors exist, Ripple is by far one of the most dominant in its use case. CEO Brad Garlinghouse has labelled the xRapid solution as “SWIFT 2.0”, which accurately describes Ripple’s vision - an upgrade of legacy infrastructure so as to create a better all-round experience.
If you ask me, from about mid-2018 to now, Ripple and its XRP token has the best 12 of almost any crypto project - excluding Basic Attention Token maybe. Partnerships, successful pilot programs, great outreach and awareness efforts, and a good deal of recognition by existing financial institutions - Ripple has seized so many headlines this year.
Here are Ripple’s biggest achievements and announcements this year:
- Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse has been speaking to industry insiders, including the IMF’s Christine Lagarde
- MoneyGram is using xRapid for commercial activity
- Many Asian banks, including Thailand’s largest commercial bank, the SCB, is trialling xRapid
- Ria Money Transfer joins RippleNet
2. Basic Attention Token (BAT)
The Basic Attention Token (BAT) Project and the associated Brave Browser are two entities that are aiming to offer users more privacy and make content creation a fairer game for the creators themselves. The BAT token can be used to tip content creators and publishers on various social platforms or directly, and users can earn BAT tokens for viewing advertisements. The Brave browser is also much faster than other browsers because it blocks ads and trackers on web pages. The project has quickly prominent in crypto circles as one with an active use case and product.
And what exactly has BAT accomplished this year? Quite a lot:
- The Brave Browser is growing twice as fast as Google Chrome (no doubt the browsing speed has something to do with it!)
- The Brave Browser is more popular than Firefox and Opera
- Brave hit more than 20 million downloads on the Android Platform
- The launch of Brave Ads
- Brave introduced tipping on Reddit, Twitter and other platforms
3. MakerDAO (MKR/DAI)
MakerDAO is one of the more interesting stablecoin ecosystems in the market. There are two tokens in it: Maker (MKR) and DAI, with the latter being the actual stablecoin. Unlike many other stablecoins, the DAI stablecoin is not backed by fiat currency. Rather it is a Collateralized Debt Position with ETH funds locked up. The MKR token acts as a governance token that users can use to contribute in the decision making processes of the network. It also pays for network fees.
Stablecoins have been a major trend in 2019 or even perhaps since the market went down in early 2018. They are excellent trading tools that can beat the volatility of the market. MakerDAO has stood out among stablecoins - even if not the most popular, the unique approach to stablecoins has garnered it a lot of attention.
MakerDAO’s highlights of the past year include:
- Consensys project Meridio partners with MakerDAO
- MakerDAO team launches DEX Eth2Dai
- Argentinian social network Taringa! partnered with MakerDAO
- Loans as large as $1 million are being minted on MakerDAO
And this has only been the tip of the iceberg for what’s been happening with these projects! Expect much more to happen as 2019 comes to a close soon enough.