ArticlesAug 12

NFTs: 2021 hype & beyond

In 2021, the NFTs ecosystem continued to grow at an unprecedented rate. According to the report from with NFTs industry statistics, the market of non-fungible tokens surpassed $250 million in early 2020, up nearly 300% from the previous 2019. On top of that, within a couple of months, crypto investors poured $90 million into NFTs and digital collectibles, causing the overall market cap of digital marketplaces to rise by 1785%, from $23 million at the beginning of 2021 to $432 million near the end of March.

Of all NFTs segments, virtual worlds and artworks occupied the most part. Still, computer games were ahead in the number of transactions (almost 50% of NFT transactions in 2020 were associated with them), and collectibles were not far behind.

The most used NFT-marketplace is a universal OpenSea platform that allows users to mint and trade NFTs, including the ERC721 and ERC1155 standards, view data on them, and check statistics. Created in 2017, today, it offers over 300 types of assets and over 10,000,000 minted tokens. Almost all crypto collections are available to users, including CryptoPunks and Hashmasks, as well as items from many popular blockchain games, such as SoRare, CryptoKitties, Axie Infinity, Gods Unchained, and much more. In June 2021, OpenSea’s sales hit a record high of around $150 million.

Another popular marketplace for buying, selling, and creating NFTs, is Mintbase which excels in covering niche NFTs categories such as music, photography, and news.

Rarible and Zora platforms won great success among fans of crypto-art and artists themselves since they are not curated. To upload the art-NFTs on them, users only need to register and pay for the transaction fee to mint a token. Unlike them, on curated services like SuperRare, Nifty Gateway, MakersPlace, or Known Origin, to start selling the digital artworks, content creators need to submit an application form, which has rather severe selection criteria and a long waiting period for the experts’ decision, which often scares off the creators of NFTs.

Forby, many digital artworks are already placed in online collections of virtual worlds. Cryptovoxels, the first blockchain-based virtual world, has several art galleries where users can buy art in the form of NFTs. As the virtual reality space becomes more popular, displaying digital art in it becomes more common and exciting to the crypto community.

Experts argue that 2021 has established itself as a boom year for art NFTs. In the first few months alone, there were lots of massive sales. E.g., in February, Canadian singer Grimes sold 10 digital paintings on the Nifty Gateway platform for about $6 million. Later that month, NFT featuring the Nyan Cat meme sold for just under $600,000.

The most notable event was the sale of ... <read it in the next part of "NFTs: 2021 hype & beyond" tomorrow>

Alexandra Shilina
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