2019 was a good year for dapps and a particularly good one for Tron and Ethereum. That’s the upshot of Dapp Review’s new report into crypto-powered decentralized applications. The sprawling research document inspects the major dapp networks in forensic detail and provides key takeaways. The headline-grabber is the revelation that Tron, EOS, and Ethereum accrued $23 billion in dapp volume last year, with Tron leapfrogging EOS along the way to establish itself as the de facto dapp network for recreational use.
Three Chains Control the Dapp Economy
As the cryptoconomy has evolved, so has the role played by the leading smart contract networks. Ethereum has pivoted from ICOs to defi, Tron has become the preeminent dapp chain for gambling applications, and EOS has found itself positioned somewhere between the two, not quite decentralized enough for defi and onchain resource costs too unpredictable for high volume dapps. As a result, it will likely be Tron founder Justin Sun who can take the most heart from Dapp Review’s 2019 report.
It found that close to 2,000 dapps were launched last year, with 80% of those issued on the Tron network pertaining to gambling. Dapp Review’s description of Tron as “Las Vegas on the blockchain” is an apposite one. Tron-based exchange and gaming dapps also had a good year though. Tron racked up a total of $4.4 billion in transaction volume in 2019, across more than 420 million transactions.
Ethereum, meanwhile, averaged 40-60K defi users per month last year, and total transaction volume of $12.8 billion, with more than 90% of this attributed to decentralized finance (defi), including exchanges. In crypto, as in so many other spheres, a handful of big players control the industry: Ethereum, Tron, and EOS account for 98% of all dapp transaction volume, leaving the long tail of smaller smart contract chains to fight for the crumbs.
Tron Pips EOS to the Post
One of the most successful Tron dapps of 2019 was Wink, aided by a midsummer IEO on Binance. Dapp Review’s report highlights the daily dollar volume of the leading Tron casino dapps, with Wink way out in front. The authors of the report, observing Tron’s acquisitions and integrations over the past 12 months, conclude “There is no doubt that these capital operations have shown Justin’s ambition and execution ability.”
This includes Justin Sun integrating video streaming platform Dlive into the Bittorrent ecosystem, and pledging fealty to Dlive for all future broadcasts of his own. With the Line blockchain that powers Dlive’s token economy set to be switched out for Tron, the latter’s onchain transactions look set to swell further this year.
Given the number of metrics that can be used to record dapp usage, crowning the dominant smart contract network depends on which benchmark you go for. Dapp Review, for its part, has positioned the winners as Ethereum, Tron, and then EOS, in that order, with Tron pipping EOS to second spot by dint of having more active users. Ethereum is out in front on this metric, with 1.82 million active users, followed by Tron with 989K and then EOS with 729K. Tron also outpaced EOS in terms of number of active dapps, by 637 to 633.
With EOS aiming to regain the momentum it had upon launch, Tron uniting ecosystems through M&As, and Ethereum placing all its hopes in defi, the next 12 months look set to break new records for dapp usage.
What are your thoughts on Dapp Review’s 2019 dapp report? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Dapp Review.
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