Since launching in 2015, Ethereum has become the secure backbone for decentralized applications (dApps) on the decentralized web 3.0.
Ethereum offers developers platform and tools for creating dApps, and with several different Ethereum smart contract tokens, such as ERC20, ERC677, and the newer ERC1155, now available to developers the variety of dApps is mind-blowing.
Things haven’t taken off as quickly as some had hoped, but this is due to Ethereum’s scaling issues more than the dApps themselves, but as Ethereum 2.0 rolls out over the next couple of years, we can expect a plethora of web 3.0 dApps.
In this article I look into 5 Ethereum dApps that are exciting and I think you should keep an eye on.
MakerDAO (MKR) is a decentralized lending platform with its own stablecoin DAI, which it uses for lending and borrowing.
MKR’s main utility: The MakerDAO Collateralized Debt Position (CDP) is a smart contract protocol that runs on Ethereum. It is a core component of DAI, which is a USD pegged stablecoin but isn’t backed by USD.
Rather than backing DAI with real dollars, the MakerDAO governance leverages smart contracts to regulate lending operations which helps maintain DAI/USD stability.
The CDPs alter the total supply of outstanding DAI: creating extra DAI when a collateralized loan is taken out, and burning existing DAI when a loan is paid back.
The interest for the loans is controlled by a decentralized network of MKR tokens, which ultimately profit from each loan, which anybody can profit from or lend if they need to.
The loans are issued through Maker’s Oasis Trade dApp, which facilitates trading Etheruem tokens, lending and borrowing.
The amount of collateral is always much higher than the amount of the loan, which guarantees the loan repayment.
Maker also has the Dai Savings Rate (DSR), which allows DAI holders to lock their DAI into Maker’s DSR contract and earn a variable interest rate in DAI.
As well as this, anyone can use Maker to open a Vault, and lock in other tokens such as ETH or BAT, and use these as collateral, and this will generate DAI interest against that collateral.
Where blockchain meets centralized databases has always been one of blockchain’s biggest vulnerabilities, but Chainlink has built a secure bridge between the two.
Chainlink is a platform for connecting smart contracts to real-world data, events and payments, and the data connection it offers is reliable and tamper-proof, as it’s all done through a secure decentralized oracle network.
Smart contracts aren’t able to connect to external resources, such as APIs or any off-chain data, but Chainlink figured out how to do it in way that was still secure, trustworthy, and decentralized.
Chainlink has created a network of nodes that can provide information to and from any blockchain.
This means Chainlink oracles can offer essential information such as price feeds, event results, and links to traditional payment systems securely and reliably, which means the possibilities of future dApps is now much greater than before.
Even legacy institutions, such as Google and SWIFT have partnered up with Chainlink to take advantage of using decentralized ledger technology.
SWIFT has started trialling blockchain for real-world transfers and it’s using Chainlink as its bridge. The proof of payment is validated by Chainlink, who then sends the data back to SWIFT to confirm payment.
It’s still early days, but the fact that SWIFT is using Chainlink shows the possibilities of this young and exciting Etheruem dApp.
Basic Attention Token (BAT)
Basic Attention Token (BAT) is a token design with users attention on the Internet in mind. The project aims to address fraud and a lack of trust in digital advertising, by offering transparency to the user.
The BAT token is integrated with the Brave web browser, and is used as an incentive token to reward all users in the ecosystem – the user, publisher, and advertiser.
Advertisers pay in BAT to advertise on Brave Browser, which is then distributed to users and publishers, who are paid in BAT for their attention and digital advertising space.
Brave Browser is a privacy–conscious browser, and to earn BAT revenue a user has to opt in. Unless a user does that, they will not earn any BAT, but they will not receive any ads either.
The browser also claims to be faster and more secure than the likes of Chrome and Firefox, and it also offers the ability to open private windows using the Onion Router (TOR) to make one’s browsing experience even more private and secure.
Aragon is one of the most exciting projects being built on Ethereum. It offers a platform and tools that facilitates the construction of your own decentralized autonomous organization (DAO).
Aragon empowers freedom by creating tools for unstoppable, borderless DAOs. These can be any organizations, communities, or even governments (maybe further down the line) that want to make use of a decentralized and immutable algorithm, that will execute its decisions through smart contract technology.
Unsurprisingly, the first use of ANT token is governance. The Aragon Governance Proposal (AGP) process offers a way for anyone holding the token to vote on any proposals within the network.
Another use case in the Aragon network is the Aragon Court. This feature handles disputes that require the judgment of human jurors.
To be a juror, one must convert some ANT for an ANJ token. The ANJ allows a person to be a part of the jury, which will also be paid a fee for successfully adjudicating disputes.
Many entities, such as virtual worlds, DeFi protocols, and decentralized identity platforms are using Aragon already, and the dApp is aiming to revolutionize and democratize democracy.
OMG Network (OMG)
OMG Network offers financial inclusion and interoperability through its public, decentralized network.
It offers a platform for sending and trading any asset for any other asset. Whether it’s Airmiles, Amazon Gift Cards, or Thai Baht, the OMG Network allows its users a way to transact however they choose.
Arguably the biggest news in the cryptosphere in the last few months came from the OMG Network when it launched its Plasma sidechain.
Transactions on the plasma sidechain are 66% cheaper than the Ethereum main chain, and at thousands of transactions per second, it’s a major step forward for the whole Ethereum eco-system.
The layer-two scaling solution will start freeing up space on the Ethereum network immediately, and Bitfinex has already said it will move all of its Ethereum-based USDT onto the OMG Network.
This is only the beginning for the OMG Network, and I’d expect many more ETH-based tokens to move onto the OMG Network.
Ethereum is the second biggest cryptocurrency by market cap, but the eco-system is a burgeoning hive of development that no other blockchain can compete with.
There is so much development going on in the Ethereum eco-system and with many other exciting dApps not mentioned here, it’s difficult to keep track of everything.
MakerDAO, Chainlink, Basic Attention Token, Aragon, and OMG Network all offer such a variety of possibilities.
And as Ethereum rolls out ETH 2.0 these dApps and many others will prosper at the capabilities of finally having a decentralized Internet at scale.
Author: Tommy Limpitlaw