New Delhi: Non-fungible tokens, popularly known as NFTs, were among the most buzzed terms of the year 2021, beating Dogecoin, blockchain and even Ethereum in Google searches. But the jury is still out on whether NFT is merely an over-hyped fad or a nascent technology with a larger use case.
The experts have mixed opinions on its use cases but they unanimously voted in favour of its durability.
Undoubtedly, many of the weaker projects will lose the fizz, but projects based on strong fundamentals will last longer, the experts opined.
Siddharth Jaiswal, Founder and CEO of SportZchain said NFTs are booming and becoming an instrumental part of popular culture. “The major NFT trend this year was brands like Pepsi, Adidas and Nike joining the metaverse revolution,” he added.
The concept of NFTs plays well with human needs of ownership and authenticity. Experts believe the NFT space is a great business opportunity, where people can make decent money.
Echoing Jaiswal’s views, Hitesh Malviya, founder, Itsblockchain said Metaverse real estate was one of the most buzzed trends in 2021 in the NFT bandwagon. Metaverse lands recorded over billion dollar sales within a month after Facebook announced to rebrand itself as Meta, he added. “We are at an early stage of Metaverse adoption and expect Metaverse land price to move higher in 2022.”
The Sandbox, which is one of the leading decentralized metaverse projects, has witnessed a super solid rally of more than 1,200 per cent since the Facebook announcement.
Ramkumar Subramaniam, Co-Founder & CEO, GuardianLink.io. believes the EdTech space is also rapidly making its way into the world of NFTs.
“While certificates, degrees are generally offered in printed form or as a digital badge, the biggest challenge has always been verification,” he added.
Experts believe that universities, schools and other educational institutions can offer certificates in the form of NFTs. This would substantiate the achievement and make it easier for students to prove the ownership of the certification.
NFTs are transforming art, music, sports, enabling monetization of digital assets and giving digital creators several options to monetize their artwork.
Ankit Wadhwa, CEO & Co-Founder, Rario said that NFT space grew beyond digital artwork in 2021.
“This move was towards tokenization, community-owned branding and gaming where games publishers entered the blockchain space to bring more value for players with gamification and ‘play-to-earn’ models,” he added.
Undoubtedly, NFTs are in their early phase but they are here to stay, experts said, adding that NFTs are going to attract a much larger audience in the coming years.
“We saw a massive supply influx of PFP NFT projects this year, and 95 per cent of them are currently trading below their original mint price,” said Malviya. “NFT collections without utilities will fail to survive in the long term.”
The current internet or web model is merely about sharing the information whereas Web 3.0 will drive towards a new internet, which will be led by the community in future and NFTs will be pivotal for it.
“The Web 3.0 will be about two-way microtransactions, which will be about having ownership of data, monetising data and earning rewards from it,” said Wadhwa.
NFTs gained popularity among both Indian and global icons. Celebrities leveraged the NFT-backed technology to create digital content for their fans and relevant community.
Paris Hilton, Lindsey Lohan, Melania Trump, Snoop Dogg, Tiger Woods, Usain Bolt, Tom Brady, Faf du Plessis, Shakib Al Hassan and many more global icons launched their NFT collections.
Back home, Amitabh Bachchan, Salman Khan, Zaheer Khan, Rishab Pant, Shefali Verma and Smriti Mandhana followed suit.
Experts argue that the blockchain industry is set to change the world, given the pace at which the industry has taken shape in the past two years; 2022 is going to be even a bigger year for NFTs, they believe.
“Going forward, utility concepts in NFTs are going to be the driving force for the industry, with a hawkeye on gaming NFTs,” Subramaniam said.