This is part 2 of my 3 part series where I look at the pros and cons - the two sides - of Tron.
For this three part series I want to look at three important parts of Tron - transactions, dapps, and decentralization, but try to look at it from both sides. There are positives and negatives, problems and solutions, good things and bad things when looking at Tron or any other cryptocurrency.
For part 1 of the series, I looked at transactions and scalability. For this part of the series, part 2, I will look at an important part of network activity - Dapps.
What are Dapps?
Dapp is a combination of the words Decentralized and Application. A dapp runs on the network, whether Tron's network, Ethereum's network, or another, rather than on a central server like you might find for any number of websites or games you may interact with. Dapps may include games, finance, exchanges, or a number of other use cases, and are an important part of crypto.
So again, I am trying to get an idea of the good and the bad of Tron when thinking about Dapps and how you might actually use the Tron network.
First Side of Tron - Dapps are thriving!
There are a large number of active dapps running on Tron. According to dapp.com (a fantastic site for data and information on the dapp economy), on 7/22/2020 there were 104 active dapps on Tron, compared to 226 on Ethereum and 96 on EOS. Mind you, these numbers fluctuate every day, but that is a substantial number of applications that are running on Tron, Ethereum, EOS, and other blockchains (I'll say it again, I am hopeful that multiple blockchains and cryptos can happily coexist). Looking at daily active users on the same day, Tron wins out with 64,000 to Ethereum's 36,000 and EOS's 21,000 (this data also shows a substantial number of users on Terra, with 51,000).
I believe a great deal of this success is due to Tron's fast and cheap transactions, as discussed in part 1 of this series. Tron also has a number of tools to make token and dapp creation easy for developers. On this note, a major focus of Tron's recent upgrade to 4.0 is to attract enterprise developers, so we could see even more development.
On the token front, it is easy and affordable to create either TRC-10 or TRC-20 tokens, with a great deal of resources to help you along the way.
Second Side of Tron - Dapps are lacking.
To put it bluntly, Dapps are very concentrated on Tron. A great number of Dapps running on Tron are gambling or "high-risk". Now part of this is because of the relatively low price of Tron and the low transaction fees, and I am not commenting on whether it is a good or bad thing, but the number of dapps focused on Defi, something that seems to be thriving on Ethereum, is much smaller.
That's not to say that there are not Defi platforms on Tron - there is Oikos and the Just Network among others - but they seem to take the back seat compared to the dominance of other projects. If the existing defi platforms grow and more begin to emerge, this may benefit all Tron users.
But looking again at dapp.com, on any given day, gambling and high-risk can make up around half or more of the top ten most active dapps by users and volume.
And finally, something that really grinds my gears is the number of "get rich quick" dapps. Even scrolling through publish0x, you may see reference to a few projects that claim to pay out huge sums, but you have to wonder how that is possible. They are not an exchange, not a gambling platform, not a game, and not a defi platfrom. They are often something else! There is likely a substantial amount of risk in these schemes and caution is warranted. Unfortunately, this issue is not unique to Tron, and is likely a topic for another day.
The next part of my 3 part series involves Tron's governance and Delegated Proof of Stake model. What are the pros and cons of how Tron runs?
Thank you for reading! My goal is not to recommend, but to start a conversation. Please follow for more updates and comment below.
Update: The final part is posted! Check it out!