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Digital Asset Markets: Exploring 5 Key Themes. Part 1

The Underrated Benefits of NFTs

In the digital age, innovation has become synonymous with evolution, and one such innovation that has recently taken the world by storm is Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs). NFTs are a transformative force in the digital space, reshaping the way we perceive, own, and exchange digital assets. But what exactly are NFTs, and why are they causing such a stir in the worlds of art, entertainment, and technology? This article will delve into the essence of NFTs, exploring their definition, unique features, and the incredible possibilities they bring to the forefront of the 21st-century digital economy.

What Is a Non-Fungible Token (NFT)?

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are unique digital assets tokenised on a blockchain, each with distinct identification codes and metadata that set them apart from other tokens. NFTs can be traded for money, cryptocurrencies, or other NFTs, with their value determined by market demand and perception. Unlike interchangeable cryptocurrencies, NFTs are distinct and non-interchangeable, even if they appear identical.

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) burst into the spotlight in 2021, with astronomical growth in sales volume and unique buyers. According to CryptoSlam, the NFT market saw an astonishing 41,784% increase in sales volume and a 6,959% growth in unique buyers. Fast forward to 2023, NFT activity is once again on the rise, fueled by the disruptive launch of platforms like Blur, an Ethereum NFT marketplace, and the newfound popularity of Bitcoin ordinals, allowing users to inscribe text, images, and other data on satoshis – the smaller units of Bitcoin. Beyond the world of cartoon apes and pixelated punks, there exists an underappreciated upside to NFTs that extends into various industries, transforming the way we interact with digital assets.

What makes NFTs particularly interesting in 2023 is their potential in multiple industries, creating new and exciting opportunities:

1. Gaming: NFTs have the potential to revolutionise the gaming industry. Gamers can truly own their in-game assets, including land, avatars, and virtual items. These assets can be bought, sold, and moved across different games and metaverses, allowing users to carry their digital assets from one gaming world to another. This interoperability opens up new avenues for gaming and asset monetisation.

2. Music: NFTs provide a unique way for fans to support their favorite artists. Fans can invest in an artist's work by purchasing NFTs tied to songs, granting them royalty rights whenever the song is played on streaming services. Additionally, artists can use NFTs to offer exclusive real-world experiences to their supporters, such as early access to new releases or meet-and-greets.

3. Art: NFTs have ignited a revolution in the art world, offering artists a novel platform to showcase and sell their digital creations. Artists can tokenise their digital artwork as NFTs, allowing them to reach a global audience and exchange their work for cryptocurrencies. Numerous platforms have emerged, serving as digital galleries where artists can exhibit and sell their pieces. What's even more intriguing is that some traditional art galleries now accept NFTs as a form of payment for physical artworks.

4. Collectibles industry: NFTs are redefining the collectibles industry, introducing a world of new possibilities for collectors. Collectible items transformed into NFTs can be bought, sold, and traded as digital assets. This innovation allows collectors to own unique items, such as limited-edition pieces or artist-signed works, securely stored in a digital format, making them easily tradable within the digital realm.

5. Fashion: The fashion industry is embarking on a new era by experimenting with NFTs. Designers are creating digital clothing items that can be tokenised as NFTs and worn within virtual reality environments. This not only enables people to express their style in a unique manner but also provides designers with a fresh avenue to monetise their creations.

6. Sport: In the sports industry, NFTs are making waves as well. Sports teams are exploring the sale of digital versions of their merchandise, which can be stored as NFTs. Fans can now demonstrate their allegiance to their favorite teams in a novel way, while sports franchises unlock new opportunities to monetise their brand.

7. Ticketing: Live events and ticketing also see the integration of NFTs. Ticketmaster's partnership with the blockchain Flow enables event organisers to issue NFTs for live shows. These NFTs enhance fans' experiences and can serve as digital collectibles. The ticketing industry is evolving with blockchain technology, providing more security and authenticity to tickets.

8. Social Media: NFTs are redefining the way content creators are compensated on social media platforms. Centralised Web2 social media giants often profit from user-generated content without adequately rewarding the creators. With NFTs, users can store their social media activities on public blockchains, representing profiles, likes, comments, and more. This opens up opportunities for social tipping, secondary marketplaces for profiles, and better ways for content creators to capture value for their work.

9. Healthcare: In healthcare, NFTs offer a game-changing solution to the challenges of managing public health records. By minting these records as NFTs, all pertinent patient information can be stored conveniently and securely. Patients can grant consent for data access and potential sales, even earning tokens through smart contracts. Health Hero's Go! App is a prime example, creating Well-Being NFTs that represent users and accumulate health data, enhancing their rarity and tradeability in an open market.

10. Web3 Domain Names: Web3 domain names, such as those ending in ".eth," are technically represented as NFTs on blockchains. These domains offer more than just serving as websites and email addresses. They can be utilised for data storage, granting users control over their online identity. Users can carry their data across the web via NFTs, and even give applications permission to access certain information, enhancing privacy and data ownership.

To sum up, NFTs have come a long way from their initial hype in 2021, and their potential remains vastly underappreciated. Beyond the world of cartoon avatars and digital art, NFTs are permeating industries like gaming, music, ticketing, social media, and web domains. They bring a wave of innovation and opportunities, enabling users to truly own and monetise their digital assets while providing a secure and transparent ecosystem for creators and consumers alike.

As we move further into the decentralised digital age, NFTs will continue to disrupt traditional models and open up new possibilities across a wide array of industries, showcasing the true potential of this blockchain technology. The underappreciated upside of NFTs is the bridge to a more user-centric, creative, and interconnected digital world.

Contact SAXE Global for more insights or consultation here.

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