Best dApps for 2018

Blockchain technology has given rise to a new type of open-source software platform called decentralized application (or dApp). Dapps have become very popular the last couple of years and their numbers have increased dramatically, particularly in December last year, when  179 were released within only one month. The trend is expected to continue throughout 2019, with possibly the creation of new blockchains for dApp development. However, their adoption and use remain limited.

More about dApps

The most popular platforms for the creation of dApps is Ethereum and EOS, but many new other platforms are competing: from the Chinese NEO, to QTUM, Lisk, and Cardano, all of them are hoping to dethrone the dApp king Ethereum.

While Ethereum boasts the highest number of dApps, EOs has three times the users Ethereum has. The most common type of dApp is that of games, while social blogging platform Steemit is the most used dApp, with around 5,000 users every 24 hrs. While the numbers of users are very small, this is only the beginning, as the technology itself is relatively new, and networks such as Ethereum are only a few years old.

Top dApps 

IDEX is a trading platform which was launched in 2012. It is an Ethereum-based decentralized exchange that supports Ethereum and ERC20 token trading pairs.  

Ethlance is one of the dApps that stands out in terms of its interest and the possibility to disrupt the online job market for freelancers. It is a marketplace for freelancers and employers to find work or hire in exchange for Ether. The Ethlance database is distributed on the Ethereum public blockchain and is accessible to everyone without any central authority. Since there are no middlemen, the amount of Ether paid by the employer is the exact amount the freelancer gets. 

 CryptoKitties is by far the most popular dApp. The blockchain video game enables users to buy, collect and sell various types of digital cats. Cryptokitties is an early example of blockchain technology being used outside the realm of cryptos and as an entertainment application, opening the way to many other gaming dApps. Each CryptoKitty is unique and owned by the user, with a value that fluctuates according to the market’s volatility. 

Etheremon stands out as a revolutionary game that has the potential to disrupt the gaming industry, as it combines blockchain and VR gaming, and rewards players with tokens. Built on the Ethereum blockchain, Etheremon creates a world populated with Ether monsters which can be captured, trained, traded or transformed.  

BetDice is according to the Daily Hodl the number one dApp in terms of volume, having generated more than $129 million in revenue within seven days.

Problems with the usability of dApps

While dApps are trending, they have yet to be widely adopted.  One of the reasons is that users need to buy the relevant cryptocurrency to run the specific dApp. While regular apps can be easily downloaded by visiting the Play or Apple store, dApps, especially those hosted on Ethereum, or any other smart contract-based platforms, require the user to first sign up with a crypto exchange and then buy ETH, STEEM or any other relevant crypto. This is hardly easy or fast and presupposes that the user is acquainted with the complex processes of cryptos and digital exchanges. While hundreds (394) of dApps have been abandoned, this is not alarming as more of them are released every day. As it has been argued by many, dApps might be the reason to overcome the current bear market, as their adoption will help boost the popularity of many blockchain projects.

    Hayden P.

    A blockchain and cryptocurrency enthusiast

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