Over the last couple of years, non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, emerged from their niche to become one of the biggest technology trends around. NFT art sells for millions, influencers and celebrities tout their NFT avatars, and an entire dedicated NFT marketplace has sprung up to keep up with demand. What upcoming NFT trends could dominate the space in 2022? Let’s take a look at the exciting NFT innovations of this year.
1. Play-to-Earn Gaming
Following the lead of hit social games like CryptoKitties and Axie Infinity, multiplayer games in which players earn NFT items that can be traded, or corresponding cryptocurrency tokens, are taking off in a big way. Industry giants such as Square Enix and Electronic Arts have backed the concept, and it’s only a matter of time before big-budget AAA play-to-earn games are released.
2. Web3 and the Metaverse
Web3 refers to the upcoming new era of the internet, an evolution that will see social media, gaming, plus virtual, and augmented reality all join up with blockchain technology to have us interacting, shopping, and playing in immersive shared 3D worlds called metaverses. NFTs are key to this concept, providing unique identifiers to digital objects that can be created, traded, and transferred across metaverse environments. NFTs should, in theory, empower creators in the metaverses to create their vision and also monetize it in a fair way.
3. NFT Real Estate
NFT real estate can refer to both the use of NFTs to verify ownership of digital land in the metaverse (yes, it’s still called ‘real’ estate) or even in the physical world. Metaverses, such as Decentraland or The Sandbox, sell NFTs essentially as property deeds, but houses in the United States are already having ownership rights tied to an NFT via a process known as tokenization.
4. NFT Avatars
NFTs started out as collectibles – variations on art pieces, usually face profiles as in the case of CryptoPunks and Bored Apes. This makes them perfect for use as social media avatars. The holder of the NFT can prove their identity and ownership, and thus verify themselves on social media even if other users copy the same image. This dispenses with the need to give out personal information such as real names, important in a more privacy-focused Web3. Furthermore, NFTs like Bored Apes look similar enough to each other, but with unique identifying accessories or expression combinations. So users can look unique while also expressing their identification with a community, ideal for social media.
5. Decentralized Branding
Any marketer will tell you that consumers love to identify with a good brand. But the traditional model of the company controlling a brand and using it to sell products is quite one-sided. NFTs provide a way to build a brand while still allowing the community to profit from it. The Bored Ape Yacht Club is the standout example of this, but successive projects could take this concept to new heights.
NFTs and Music
The potential for NFTs to revolutionize the music world is only just starting to be explored. Traditionally, large music labels hold most of the power in the industry, taking the lion’s share of monetization and sometimes locking artists in unfavorable contracts. The currently popular streaming model used by Spotify does not have an artist-friendly business model either. NFT music tracks, such as those recently released by Snoop Dogg, not only offer artists better monetization models but also grant certain rights to remixers that could energize a scene of mixers and DJs putting their own spin on songs.
7. Ticketing and ID
Because each NFT is unique, this makes them perfect for verifying owner identity and serving as an authorization method. As such, they are well suited to serve as tickets for events, social club gatherings, or even access to corporate organizations. NFTs could see used as digital IDs for travel or “know your customer” for business and finance.
8. NFT Personalities
NFT personas for artists, influencers, and so on are becoming popular because one can exist under a created persona, participate in metaverse events, etc., all while maintaining control of your identity. Are we on the cusp of seeing the first celebrity known only as an NFT?
9. Ethereum Upgrade
Most NFTs are built on the Ethereum blockchain. This means that the NFT space is limited by Ethereum’s proof-of-work consensus model for minting new ETH. However, Ethereum is set to update to a much more energy-efficient and scalable proof-of-stake model, which should make NFTs much easier and more sustainable to create.
10. NFTs in Fashion
The fashion industry certainly knows how to market exclusivity, so NFTs offer an exciting opportunity for clothing brands to cultivate their followings and create digital desire objects. Gucci, Tommy Hilfiger, Paco Rabanne, among others, have already stepped into the NFT space, as have athletic labels such as Nike and Adidas.
How To Develop NFTs for Your Business
At AccelOne, our nearshore software development team is experienced in creating solutions that enable industry-leading businesses to integrate blockchain elements into their operations.
To learn more about how we can help you streamline your business using NFTs, contact us online or call 800.863.6814.
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