2017 ICOs, 2018 Smart Contracts, 2019 Stablecoins, and 2020 DeFI. It’s Time to Pass On the Torch: Non-Fungible Tokens in 2021.
It’s no secret that people like collecting things. The types of items you collect depend on your particular interests and passions or whether those collectibles resonate with you on an emotional level. Think of how you might have collected Pokémon cards, stamps, video games, books, posters, maybe even marbles or bugs as a child. Your collection may look pretty different as an adult. Perhaps you now collect fashionable bags and shoes, tech gadgets, antiques or artwork. Or maybe you still collect the same things you did as a child.
But what if your physical collection can be expanded to a digital and virtual world? What if UFC fans can collect and own their favorite Conor McGregor (or other fighter) moments? For Nike fans, how about traversing virtual gaming worlds while donning your favorite kicks? What if you can now own that pet dragon you’ve always secretly wanted in a virtual home? For the art collectors out there, imagine having a virtual gallery of digital artwork that you can fit in your pocket and take around with you to show your friends and family. How about owning your favorite celebrity’s memorabilia and behind the scenes rarities? Well, you might not need to imagine for much longer because the rise of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in the crypto world are going to make your wildest imaginings and dreams real — virtually real. And here’s a heads-up to Star Trek fans, you may soon be able to own William Shatner’s tokenized memories in the form of trading cards, one of which will be a poignant image of Shatner hugging longtime friend Leonard Nimoy.
NFTs have been the source of whispers across the globe over the past few months and are a strong contender to steal the spotlight in the 2021 crypto world. The relatively short history of the crypto world has been characterized by waves of trends: the 2017 ICO boom, 2017–18 smart contract platform era, 2018–19 stablecoin era, and 2020 DeFi craze. Although DeFi has been the focus for most of 2020, NFTs have steadily been gaining traction in recent months. Ilya Abugov, project manager at DappRadar, recently told Cointelegraph: “There is more hype around NFTs right now. To some extent it’s an extension of the DeFi excitement.”