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Decrypt’s Coin of the Year: Solana (SOL)




Decrypt's Coin of the Year: Solana (SOL)

It’s been a wild year in crypto. The surging popularity of NFTs, the maturing DeFi landscape, and new all-time highs for Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other cryptocurrencies dominated headlines and captured a great deal of attention in 2021.

Yet one project managed to wade through the noise and emerge as our pick for Coin of the Year: Solana.

The title is based on a combination of price performance and ecosystem growth, and this post is not investment advice. Decrypt is not suggesting anyone buy SOL—after all, in the crypto market, things can go south very quickly. SOL could tank in 2022. We’re simply saying that no crypto project had a year like Solana had.

Solana, which only just launched in March 2020, is a decentralized blockchain network that is technically still in beta. It’s billed as a more scalable, faster, and cheaper alternative to Ethereum, which remains the leading network for all things Web3. The Solana network is fueled by its eponymous native cryptocurrency SOL, which has taken the crypto industry by storm in the last 12 months.

SOL began the year at a modest price of $1.52 and has since surged by a stunning 11,150%. One year ago, in fact, even astute crypto observers could have been forgiven for not knowing what Solana was at all. “At the beginning of 2021, Solana was virtually unknown to the wider crypto/blockchain community—the prevailing opinion at that time was that it would be nearly impossible to break Ethereum’s network effect and developer moat,” Matthew Graham, CEO of Sino Global Capital and Solana investor told Decrypt

And while Solana hasn’t yet proved that it can “break” Ethereum’s network effects and become top dog in the smart-contract blockchain space, it’s come a long way to demonstrating that it’s a force that deserves to be taken seriously.

“An increasing number of people are recognizing this, and realizing that Solana is the only platform that they want to commit to building on for years to come,” Kyle Samani, managing partner at MultiCoin Capital, which led Solana’s $20 million seed round in 2019, told Decrypt

Solana’s record year

Looking back at the last year in crypto, Solana’s rise and massive surge in price is impossible to ignore.

SOL is, of course, integral to the Solana network. All transactions and smart-contract operations happen with SOL. The coin is also staked to help secure the network, earning rewards for users. This is distinct from crypto networks such as Bitcoin and Ethereum in which users “mine” the blockchain for rewards, but it’s a system that Ethereum, in particular, aims to adopt in the near future.

Solana has come on by leaps and bounds since the start of the year. It registered an all-time high price of $260 on November 6, enjoying momentum fresh off of the Solana Breakpoint conference in Lisbon, Portugal, which was the first conference organized by the Solana Foundation, designed to bring together Solana’s biggest thought leaders and innovators following a pandemic-stricken 2020.

As SOL’s price continued to rise throughout the year, so too did its share of the crypto market cap. Notching up just under $70 billion of the entire industry’s $2 trillion market cap on January 1, SOL’s share of the market has swollen ever since

By the end of January, SOL’s market cap hit $1 billion. Half way through the year, SOL’s market cap grew to roughly $10 billion. 

Today, that number is $57 billion, a 26% decrease from the $77 billion all-time high registered on November 6.

A number of factors have led to Solana’s surge this year, but chief among them is the way in which Solana has been able to position itself to both investors and casual crypto users as a viable alternative to Ethereum.

The principle reason for this is simple: there’s a growing number of crypto users who want to be able to do all the different things you can do on Ethereum, but a much cheaper entry point and with fewer additional fees. Ethereum, at the moment, continues to be plagued by high “gas”—the variable cost of transacting on the network. 

Where a simple transaction on Ethereum can cost hundreds of dollars to execute, the same type of transaction would cost only pennies on Solana. This, of course, doesn’t come without tradeoffs in terms of network stability and arguably even security, but for the moment, these tradeoffs do not appear to be a concern for Solana’s growing number of users.

And while Ethereum remains far and away the leading network for both NFT trading and DeFi activity, Solana currently leads the pack of up-and-coming contenders.

Solana NFTs

NFTs have taken not only the crypto world by storm, but they have also fully broken through to the mainstream. So much so, in fact, that Collins Dictionary named NFT its “Word of the Year” for 2021.

NFTs (shorthand for “non-fungible tokens”) are digital assets that are provably unique. They can be used to represent tangible—and intangible—items. In 2020, the market for NFTs barely moved the needle, with total sales numbering just $100 million. Over the last year, however, NFTs have moved more than $22 billion in volume. 

Before June, however, there were hardly any NFTs minting and trading on Solana. That all changed when the Solana-backed Metaplex launched an NFT marketplace and established the prevailing NFT token standard on the network.

Solana NFT creations like Degenerate Apes, Aurory, and Solana Monkey Business have since generated hundreds of millions of dollars of trading volume. Would-be investors and collectors, of course, need SOL to purchase these NFTs. And in August, the price of SOL hit a then-all-time-high of $63 following the launch of the Degenerate Apes NFT project. 

In October, Solana NFTs also became available for purchase on FTX’s regulated NFT marketplace. This was a big deal, not only because FTX lets users buy and sell collectibles in U.S. dollars (something that isn’t possible on, say, OpenSea), but it allowed Solana to piggyback off of FTX’s huge marketing run this year as well. “The crypto community right now is very interested in NFTs, and so are we,” Brett Harrison, FTX US president, told Decrypt at the time. 

Solana founder Anatoly Yakovenko also believes NFTs are gripping the crypto community. During an interview with Decrypt last month, he said that NFTs capture the collective consciousness of the industry. 

“I didn’t expect it was going to be NFTs, but I kind of felt there’s a very deep, social component to crypto, and I knew I’m not going to be able to predict what it looks like, but it’s obvious in retrospect: NFTs are it,” he said. 

Solana’s NFT push also gained some hefty recognition from the community last month, when notable NFT artist pplpleasr launched her first Solana NFT project, The Collectoooooor. More recently, Michael Jordan, Melania Trump, and Twitch co-founder Justin Kan have all jumped on the Solana NFT bandwagon. Portals, the third largest metaverse project at the time of writing, is also on Solana

DeFi on Solana

The burgeoning world of decentralized finance, or DeFi, has also played a pivotal role in Solana’s big 2021. 

DeFi—or decentralized finance—is a catch-all term for financial tools that are built on blockchain networks. These applications allow users to trade without going through traditional middlemen like banks. And, to date, a total of $11 billion of total value has been invested in DeFi projects built on Solana, per data from DeFi Llama.

The total amount of funds locked in various decentralized lending, borrowing and trading protocols today is just a tick above $249 billion, meaning Solana currently captures around 4% of the DeFi market.

“As we started to see more and more differentiated products being built on Solana, people started to take notice, user figures skyrocketed and total value locked in rapidly increased. Solana summer was just the beginning,” Graham said.

In fact, the surge came so fast this year that the Solana blockchain couldn’t handle all of the newfound attention it was getting. In September, the network crashed and stayed down for 17 hours after traders swarmed a token sale, many of them using bots, on decentralized exchange Raydium.

“Better now than when it’s a billion users,” Yakovenko tweeted at the time. 

Make no mistake, the outage was a significant pain point for Yakovenko and Solana. The network remains cheap to use, so the risk of outages due to overloaded traffic persists. 

Lisbon takeover

While SOL may still be riding high today, it was back in November that it reached its peak in terms of price.

The timing was no coincidence.

November proved to be a historic month for the entire Solana ecosystem as it took to the streets of Lisbon in celebration of all it had achieved in 2021. “These events are critical to allow developers, and investors to build stronger friendships and connections, and ultimately work together more closely,” Samani told Decrypt

The Solana Breakpoint conference took place in Lisbon between November 7 and 10 and brought together some of the biggest names involved in Solana, including its co-founders Yakovenko and Raj Gokal, FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried, and many others.

But it also welcomed new faces from the broader tech and finance space—some of whom had previously dabbled with investments and other projects on rival network Ethereum. One of those new faces was Alexis Ohanian, the co-founder of Reddit and founder of VC firm Seven Seven Six.

Lisbon, Portugal. Image: Shutterstock

Ohanian even temporarily changed his Twitter profile picture for the week, dropping his Ethereum-based Bored Ape for a Solana Monkey Business avatar instead, which is currently the most valuable NFT collection on the Solana network. Ohanian also provided arguably the biggest news of Lisbon week when his VC firm announced the launch of a $100 million fund to develop decentralized social media projects on Solana.

The announcement came at a time when Facebook—reeling from the Facebook Files leak—was busy cementing its corporate rebrand to Meta. 

“I need to be freed from centralized social media,” said Raj Gokal to a cheering Lisbon crowd at the time. 

The excitement of Lisbon evidently left a lasting impression on many of the attendees, including Lightspeed Ventures Partner Amy Wu, whose firm has invested in various Solana projects, particularly those involving gaming. In an interview with Decrypt the week following the conference, Wu said Lisbon, in a sense, represented a “realization of what [Solana] could become.”

“To see how much that community has snowballed in the last six months has just been incredible,” she said. “I would go so far to say that [Breakpoint Lisbon] was the first time a lot of people felt that there was a path for the Solana ecosystem to surpass that of Ethereum.”

And while Solana may be a world away from a billion users, momentum certainly looks to be on its side. “We have begun to activate the virtuous cycle that might get us there,” Graham told Decrypt. “We’ve realized as a community that the vision of Solana has expanded with a goal of true mass appeal applications.” 

It’s been an all-around banner year for the upstart blockchain and its native coin. One that could perhaps be best encapsulated by a tweet from Sam Bankman-Fried that has since become the stuff of crypto legend.

On January 9, in the midst of a public spat with a SOL bear, SBF tweeted: “I’ll buy as much SOL [as] you have, right now, at $3. Sell me all you want. Then go fuck off.”

We all know what happened to the price of SOL since then.

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Tulip Protocol Officially Integrates Chainlink on Solana Mainnet




Tulip Protocol Officially Integrates Chainlink on Solana Mainnet

Today, Tulip Protocol made the announcement that they have integrated Chainlink Price Feeds in order to better secure their yield aggregating platform that is running on the Solana mainnet. The team had previously stated their intention to integrate Chainlink Price Feeds, and at this point, the connection has been completely put into action. Chainlink is the premier decentralized oracle network in the world, safeguarding tens of billions of dollars in smart contracts. It has diversified its offerings across other blockchains, notably Solana, Fantom, Polygon, BNB Chain, and others.

In a recent blog post, the team behind the Tulip Protocol explained that they had integrated Chainlink to provide users with more confidence that leveraged positions will be liquidated equitably using extremely accurate price data and that the protocol will continue to be completely collateralized at all times.

According to Tomasz Wojewoda, Head of Global Sales at Chainlink Labs:

“We’re pleased that Tulip Protocol has integrated Chainlink Price Feeds on Solana, helping secure its yield aggregation protocol with highly robust, decentralized market data. With the high-throughput performance of Solana and the strong security guarantees of the Chainlink Network, Tulip Protocol is able to empower users with a performant and secure platform.”

Tulip Protocol Seeks To Take Advantage Of Solana

Tulip Protocol brings together lenders who receive a return on their deposits and borrowers who are interested in gaining access to leverage. Users who initiate leverage positions are responsible for maintaining a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio that has been previously established. The Tulip Protocol then uses the asset price data that is provided by Chainlink Price Feeds to verify that this ratio is accurate. If the value of the collateral falls below the threshold that was established by the protocol, then their position will be immediately liquidated to assist in guaranteeing that the lenders will be repaid.

Tulip Protocol intends to capitalize on Solana by giving users the ability to more regularly reinvest their income and grow their assets without having to pay exorbitant amounts of gas expenses. Chainlink oracles can now be natively integrated on Solana, making it possible for Solana-based applications to benefit from enhanced levels of security and transparency. Yesterday, OpenOcean made the announcement that they would be integrating Chainlink Price Feeds in order to help secure the limited order functionality on many chains. These chains include Avalanche, Ethereum, Polygon, Fantom, and BNB Chain.

According to Senx, Co-Founder of Tulip Protocol:

 “We’re excited to be using Chainlink Price Feeds on Solana to help secure our yield aggregation platform. By leveraging the most secure and reliable on-chain data available, we’re able to provide our lenders and borrowers with greater assurances that liquidations are based on accurate price data, and the protocol will maintain a healthy loan-to-value ratio through all market conditions.” 

Allowing Stakers To Benefit From Higher APYs

Natives of the blockchain as well as newcomers to the technology are beginning to understand that decentralization does not necessarily equate to a secure platform. Given that Web3 services are currently disclosing their susceptibilities to attacks from both within and outside the network, further initiatives should be undertaken to improve the safety of user assets. Fortunately, a growing number of blockchain businesses are beginning to add various levels of security to their services in order to solidify the trust of their existing customers and attract additional investors in the near and distant future.

Tulip Protocol is the very first yield aggregation platform to be built on Solana, and it features auto-compounding vault techniques. The dApp was developed to make use of Solana’s blockchain, which has a low cost and high efficiency, hence enabling the vault techniques to compound frequently. Stakeholders are able to reap the benefits of greater APYs as a result, without the need for active management.

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Is your SOL safe? What we know about the Solana hack




On this week’s episode of “The Market Report,” Cointelegraph’s resident experts discuss the latest updates concerning the recent Solana (SOL) hack.

To kick things off, we broke down the latest news in the markets this week:

Bitcoin realized price bands form key resistance as bulls lose $24K, significant whale activity between $22,000 and $24,800 adds to the complexity of the current spot market setup. Bitcoin (BTC) consolidated lower on Aug. 9 after familiar resistance preserved a multi-month trading range. When will we finally break out of this price range and make the move towards $30K?

Institutions flocking to Ethereum for 7 straight weeks as Merge nears: Report, “Greater clarity” around the Merge has driven institutional inflows into Ethereum products, according to a CoinShares report. Is the ETH merge finally around the corner and will it bring new all time highs to ETH or has the price already been factored into the current price?

Circle freezes blacklisted Tornado Cash smart contract addresses, Crypto data aggregator Dune Analytics said that, on Monday, Circle, the issuer of the USD Coin (USDC) stablecoin, froze over 75,000 USDC worth of funds linked to the 44 Tornado Cash addresses sanctioned by the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control’s Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons (SDN) list. Could this mark the end for Tornado Cash or is there a way they can redeem themselves?

Next up is a new segment called “Quick Crypto Tips,” which aims to give newcomers to the crypto industry quick and easy tips to get the most out of their experience. This week’s tip: Have some funds ready to buy further downturns.

Market expert Marcel Pechman then carefully examines the Bitcoin and Ether (ETH) markets. Are the current market conditions bullish or bearish? What is the outlook for the next few months? Pechman is here to break it down. The experts also go over some markets news to bring you up to date on the latest regarding the top two cryptocurrencies.

After Marcel’s market analysis, our resident experts discuss whether your SOL is safe and the latest updates on the Solana hack. We also discuss why the network has been victim to so many hacks and downtimes. What exactly do these exploits mean for the Solana platform and if you should be worried.

Lastly, we’ve got insights from Cointelegraph Markets Pro, a platform for crypto traders who want to stay one step ahead of the market. The analysts use Cointelegraph Markets Pro to identify two altcoins that stood out this week: Radicle’s RAD and DigiByte’s DGB.

Do you have a question about a coin or topic not covered here? Don’t worry. Join the YouTube chat room, and write your questions there. The person with the most interesting comment or question will be given a 1 month free subscription to markets Pro worth $100!

The Market Report streams live every Tuesday at 12:00 pm ET (4:00 pm UTC), so be sure to head on over to Cointelegraph’s YouTube page and smash those like and subscribe buttons for all our future videos and updates.

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Web3-Based ZepetoX to Build on Solana




Web3-Based ZepetoX to Build on Solana

Singapore, Singapore , Aug. 09, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Today, the ZepetoX team (ZTX, announced its foray into the web3 space, sharing its vision to build an open world that empowers creators and communities to build, play and earn.

ZepetoX is the crypto metaverse initiative jointly incubated by ZEPETO – Asia’s largest metaverse platform with over 320 million registered users – alongside leading global blockchain organizations including Jump Crypto.

As the sole blockchain project comprehensively backed by ZEPETO, ZepetoX will have exclusive ties to ZEPETO in terms of IP including technological, design, and content assets as well as bridges to facilitate user onboarding between the two platforms. ZepetoX’s blockchain development efforts will be advised by Jump.

“ZepetoX is our official venture into the blockchain industry. We feel that web3 opportunities should be advanced through a crypto-native approach, which is why we are excited to have Jump as a contributor to developing a new platform that would have exclusive connections to ZEPETO. Overall, we believe that ZepetoX can build the ideal web3 platform to not only bring blockchain to our existing users but also to expand our footprint in the blockchain space through various disruptive initiatives,” said Daewook Kim, CEO of Naver Z – the operating entity of ZEPETO.

“We are excited to support ZepetoX’s efforts aimed at onboarding new audiences into the rapidly growing crypto space. ZEPETO’s expertise and technological know-hows accumulated over the past years from building an immersive social platform will serve as a springboard for ZepetoX,” said Saurabh Sharma, Partner at Jump Crypto.

Building on the Solana network, ZepetoX will offer a web-based 3D open world with varying levels of gamification integrated as well as opportunities for users to monetize via ownership of digital assets and social interaction. Ultimately, ZepetoX aims to empower self-expression through customizable avatars and lands that can be equipped with NFTs from a rich collection of assets created by diverse creators, DAOs, or communities.

“I am thrilled to see IP powerhouses like ZepetoX choosing to build their metaverse on Solana,” said Anatoly Yakovenko, Co-Founder of Solana. “Projects like ZepetoX create new pathways for onboarding millions of users to web3.”

“Our global team brings a depth of crypto native experiences and our goal is to build on the foundation of ZEPETO to spearhead the adoption of blockchain among metaverse users, developers, and creators,” said co-CEO of ZepetoX, Chris Chang.

In the coming months, ZepetoX will launch its first land sale. The lands will be tradable on the ZepetoX marketplace, which will feature a variety of different NFTs as the open world project evolves. Further details on the sale will be available on the ZepetoX website in the coming weeks.

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About ZepetoX: ZepetoX (ZTX) is a web3 company building an immersive content-driven platform for users to create, trade digital assets and enjoy social interaction. Founded in 2022, ZepetoX is the blockchain initiative of ZEPETO, widely regarded as the largest Asia-based metaverse platform boasting over 320 million lifetime users with over 2.5 billion virtual fashion items sold.



News Via KISS PR Crypto Press Release Distribution Media Contact

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