Bitcoin-based NFTs have claimed the second spot for NFT sales per blockchain. Per data from CryptoSlam, Bitcoin NFTs generated $171 million in sales on secondary markets within the past 30 days. Last week alone, it made over $42.6 million
While Ethereum maintains the top position with nearly $397 million in NFT sales, Bitcoin’s NFT sales outshine Solana and Cardano by almost three times. The Solana network recorded approximately $56 million in NFT sales, while Cardano reported NFT sales of around $7 million.
Bitcoin NFTs run on the Ordinals protocol. Developed by software engineer Casey Rodarmor, the protocol allows users and developers to attach Ordinals to each of the 100,000,000 units of Bitcoin, commonly known as “sats” or “satoshis.”
This mechanism allows for the embedding of data, including smart contracts and JPEGs, into these smallest units of Bitcoin. As a result, NFTs can be built directly on the Bitcoin blockchain, just like other blockchain networks.
While the introduction of Ordinals has faced some criticism within the Bitcoin community, it has also gained significant traction with the release of Yuga Labs’ Ordinals-based collection in February.
Currently, the network boasts almost 9 million inscriptions and has accumulated over $41 million in total fees, as blockchain ecosystem analytics Dune recorded. This data demonstrates the sustained momentum of the Ordinals craze despite the challenges.
BRC-20 token transactions, as reported by Domo’s Dune dashboard, dominate the ordinals’ activity on Bitcoin. The BRC-20 token standard, built using ordinals, has gained attention for its role in meme coins. The market capitalization of BRC-20 meme coins surpassed $1 billion in May, with the current market cap standing at $447 million.
Ethereum has been the dominant player in the NFT space since 2017, and its massive success has prompted the rise of competing blockchain networks such as Polygon, Solana and Cardano.
Now, Bitcoin is challenging Ethereum’s established position in an unexpected manner, intensifying the competition among blockchain networks.
Ethereum has faced challenges in managing the growing adoption of NFTs, resulting in issues such as high gas fees and network congestion. This issue opened the door for Bitcoin to make its presence in the space.
This doesn’t mean that everything’s going smoothly for Bitcoin Ordinals, however. With over 200,000 pending transactions in its mempool, confirmation delays have been a concern. The network is also witnessing a rise in fees, mirroring the situation on Ethereum.
Both Bitcoin and Ethereum communities are actively working to address their limitations. Ethereum introduced the scalable ERC-6551 NFT standard. Meanwhile, Bitcoin Lightning network developers released an update for off-chain NFT transactions and asset creation.
Current numbers show that Ethereum will remain at the top, as it offers support for decentralized autonomous organizations and boasts advantages such as integration with the robust $27.5 billion decentralized finance ecosystem.
It remains uncertain whether the anticipated “flippening” will occur and if Bitcoin NFTs will surpass Ethereum’s dominance. Despite the ongoing surge in Bitcoin NFT sales, these collections have yet to showcase tangible utility or cultivate a dedicated community of holders.
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