It is seen that the Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have become even more popular than Ether this year. NFTs range from any form of artwork, music, types of tacos, and even varieties in toilet paper; from the past few months, these notable digital assets have been selling like the exotic Dutch tulips from the 17th century and some of them even reaching a worth of around millions of dollars.
However, are these NFTs worth your money or is this just unnecessary hype? Experts say that NFT crypto is a bubble poised to pop, much like the previous dot-com craze or the Beanie Babies. However, others believe that the NFTs have come here to stay and will change the investing game forever.
Table of Contents
- What is essentially meant by an NFT?
- How Is an NFT Different from Cryptocurrency?
- How do the NFTs Work?
- Why are NFTs so popular?
- What are the NFTs usually used for?
- What are the risks to be kept in mind while investing in NFTs?
- What is the possible future for the NFTs?
- How do I get to invest in NFTs?
What is essentially meant by an NFT?
To answer the famous question of what is NFT crypto, one must understand how NFT is essentially a digital asset that tends to represent numerous real-world objects like arts, music, countless in-game items, videos, GIFs and so on. They are usually bought and are also sold online like cryptocurrencies. These have been encoded with the same type of underlying software similar to other cryptos.
Multiple digital creations that already exist in online platforms can be easily converted into NFTS. These may include several iconic video clips from that of the NBA games or any viral digital art that has already been floating around the internet.
How Is an NFT Different from Cryptocurrency?
NFT basically stands for non-fungible token. It has been built using identical programming, just like cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin or Ethereum; Even after that, NFTs do not function the same way as cryptocurrencies.
It is to be understood that any form of physical money or any cryptocurrencies are basically “fungible,” meaning that they might get traded or exchanged for one another. They also have equivalent values, just like one dollar note would always be of the same value as another one-dollar note. Similarly, one Bitcoin would always be similar to any other similar Bitcoin. The fungibility of Crypto makes it relatively free to become part of transactions on any given blockchain.
However, NFT cryptos are indeed different. Each NFT has a unique digital signature, making the exchange of NFTs impossible.
How do the NFTs Work?
NFTs are backed by blockchain technology, a type of distributed public ledger that records multiple transactions on the platform. You would probably think of blockchain as a basic underlying process that only performs cryptocurrencies transactions.
Specifically, these NFTs are usually held on the Ethereum blockchain, even though other blockchains might give them the necessary support.
The NFT, which is created, or rather “minted” from any of the digital objects which can be both the tangible and the intangible items, often include :
- Videos and sports highlights
- Virtual avatars and video game skins
- Designer sneakers
It is to be understood that these NFTs come with exclusive ownership rights. Yes, you read that right. The NFT cryptos can have only one owner at any given time. The unique data of the NFTs makes it extremely easy to verify ownership and check all the past records regarding its buy and sell journey. The initial creator of the NFT might also store any precise information within the NFT’s data. For instance, artists might sign their name as the sole creator of the artwork by including their signature in the metadata of the NFT.
Why are NFTs so popular?
This coronavirus pandemic has indeed played a massive role in the current rise of NFT markets. The absolute value of NFT transactions quadrupled and went up to $250 million in the previous year, according to the research from NonFungible and the BNP Paribas-affiliated research center and firm L’Atelier.
Due to the social distancing and lockdown restrictions, people are now spending significantly more time surfing the internet. And, this is one of the reasons for the growth of online trading.
Artists, in particular, are more drawn towards the NFT marketplace to make money from online auctions, as physical selling is almost shut across the globe. On the other hand, fans too want to connect with their favorite artists; hence the rise of NFTs allows fans to own an original and unique piece created by the artist. It is a win-win situation for both buyers and sellers.
What are the NFTs usually used For?
The best NFT crypto artists and content creators have gained a unique opportunity to monetize their numerous wares with blockchain technologies. For example, the artists would no longer be dependent on multiple galleries or any particular auction houses to sell their art. Instead, artists might sell art pieces directly to any interested consumers in the form of NFT, which would also allow them to keep much more of their profits. In addition to this, the artists might also program their NFTs to receive a certain royalty percentage of every sale whenever their NFT art would get sold to any other new owner. This has been an attractive feature since the artists generally do not tend to receive any future profits once their art has been first sold.
What are the risks to be kept in mind while investing in NFTs?
NFTs have constantly been catching the attention of several high-profile technology investors, numerous major global corporations, and the famous artistic community. The various NFT proponents tend to say that these could turn out to be the future of the multiple collectibles and would allow the users to be able to prove that they actually own the digital assets.
Like any other investment, NFTs also tend to come with some concerns and risks. On the one hand, they are immensely popular in the world of tech enthusiasts; on the other hand, they still need to gain mass acceptance. Some people believe that NFTs are somewhat speculative investments as they have been prone to high rises and steep drops in their values.
The supply and current demand usually drive NFTs, and as a result of this sudden surge in demand, there have been buyers who are well known and are ready to pay even a ridiculously high price. However, it is to be noted that there would be no such guarantee to ensure that these prices would always continue to rise.
What is the possible future for the NFTs?
While these might appear to be somewhat speculative at this moment, many professionals believe that NFTs could represent an entirely brand new economy by offering digital ownership.
The songwriters or any such creators could make good money just by selling their works directly to their determined fans and, in turn, collect a specific royalty every time NFT gets re-sold. The developers might also be able to build an infrastructure and the platforms, which would help enable these new markets.
How do I get to invest in NFTs?
Well, if you have been looking for multiple ways to invest in the NFTs, you would be required to be familiar with the cryptocurrency processes and the essential need to own the same, which you would have to keep in a digital wallet. You might use popular platforms like CoinJar, Coinspot, or the Independent Reserve to purchase the required Ethereum, which you would use as the currency for trading NFTs.
It is to be understood that there has been a relatively wide range of reasons which prove why people are often attracted towards investing in these NFTs. People might want to collect these NFTs for their personal reasons (which might be social status), or maybe because of the prospect of re-selling these NFT cryptos at a relatively higher price. For better understanding, you might as well refer to https://www.blockchain-council.org/.