Ethereum is finally four, and in its few years of existence, has become a force to be reckoned with. Despite the harsh criticism over its network, the blockchain platform has a major feat under its belt. The network now has over 200,000 ERC 20 smart contracts deployed on it. Data from EtherScan shows that there are currently 204,453 token contracts on the Ethereum mainnet.
Binance Coin (BNB) is the most significant ERC 20 token on Ethereum. BNB has a total market cap of over $4.3 billion, but it is moving to its blockchain. Other worthy mentions include Chain and BAT. Ethereum’s critics have in many occasions claimed that the largest percentage of ERC20 tokens on the platform were the so-called “shit coins”. The platform did power a large portion of the scam tokens of the ICO era, most which have either gone bust or have no real use case.
Ethereum bulls do agree that some of the tokens on the platform should die a quick death. Nevertheless, they say that the large numbers of smart contracts signify that Ethereum is the hotbed of developer activity. There are enough resources and tools on it to bring blockchain technology to the world. This busy environment is probably where the next colossal Dapp will emerge.
The Power of the ERC 20 Token
The ERC 20 token’s impact on the crypto world has been nothing but extraordinary. This invention is almost single-handedly responsible for the billion dollars worth ICO market. Without the ICO revolutionizing the growth of blockchain innovations, perhaps, all that crypto-verse would have are cryptocurrencies. The ICO has played a significant role in making both crypto and its underlying technology, more mainstream.
Smart contracts, however, are what are used to build these ERC 20 tokens. These contracts facilitate both the transactions and record balances of tokens in accounts. They are written in Solidity, a programming language that works on an If-This-Then-That (IFTTT) logic basis. Once these contracts create a token, it can be spent, traded, or exchanged with other parties.
When Satoshi Nakamoto introduced Bitcoin to the world, he gave the people a currency system of their own. People now could spend or send BTC from a Bitcoin wallet, and leave banks out of it. The world’s first blockchain platform, Bitcoin is therefore known as a “First-Generation Blockchain.”
The Emergence of Smart Contracts
Ethereum’s creator Vitalik Buterin, nevertheless, knew that blockchain was capable of much more than one-on-one on-chain transactions. He designed Ethereum to allow for much more complex operations. The platform, therefore, is a decentralized supercomputer that on boards anyone, in any location. It additionally, rents him or her computational power to fulfill complex transactions.
Users can do this by creating decentralized applications that run on the Ethereum blockchain. Smart contracts run these dApps. Conceptualized by Nick Szabo, the contracts assist in coding complex transactions to simplified usable formats. Nick compares smart contracts to vending machines that make sales without third party interference.
Smart contracts use Ether (ETH) to power the development process. Most tokens generated on the Ethereum blockchain are compliant with the ERC-20 standard.
According to Mythos Capital, tokenized assets worth over $15 billion have been built on Ethereum. As their user base grows, they will bring in more value for the blockchain in years to come. Speaking to Coinbase, Paul Veradittakit of Pantera Capital says:
“The Ethereum community has stayed focused during bull runs and kept faith during the crypto winter…That focus on building is really paying off, and the ecosystem is healthier and richer because of it. So many great Ethereum projects are set to launch this year, and it’s been incredibly inspiring to watch.”