Is it crypto spring already? The projects to look out for in 2023

This week’s cryptoassets’ price action can be indicative not only of their individual potential, but also of market expectations from their respective sectors. In this regard, it is interesting to recall the most high-profile projects that were announced in the previous year(s) and can be launched in 2023.

Smart contract platforms

Ethereum ($ETH, +20% vs last week) and its ecosystem: Polygon ($MATIC, +17%) and Immutable X ($IMX, +25%) show that the global balance of power did not change. Ethereum and its layers are still the most popular platforms to build DApps of all sorts, from DeFi to gaming and other web3 services.

Solana ($SOL, +37%), the so far unsuccessful “Ethereum killer”, rallied more than others, but mostly because its previous fall was particularly dramatic. Solana’s connections with FTX, together with its technical troubles, pushed some of its most prominent projects to migrate.

BNB coin’s modest rise ($BNB, +8%) showed that investors are still wary of Binance and its allegedly insufficient proof-of-reserves. Ripple’s similar result ($XRP, +8%) may have been caused by its on-going litigation with the SEC. As to Cardano ($ADA, +10%), the blockchain still struggles to attract enough developers’ and users’ attention.

  • New projects to look out for in 2023

While the newly founded blockchain Aptos ($APT, +45%), conceived by ex-Meta engineers, is rather successfully fighting for its place in the sun, another ex-Meta team is preparing to launch its rival called Sui.

Metaverse and gaming

The category that rallied the most this week is the metaverse coins. After last autumn’s controversy about its actual number of users, Decentraland’s spike ($MANA, +67%) showed that open (decentralized) metaverse still has potential. It is possible that last week’s Apple announcement could have something to do with it: a tech giant will release a standalone AR/VR headset, affirming its metaverse aspirations.

The Sandbox ($SAND, +44%), another open metaverse, followed suit, together with major crypto gaming tokens, like Axie Infinity ($AXS, +17%) and Alien Worlds ($TLM, +23%).

  • New projects to look out for in 2023

The existing open metaverses have many issues to work on, primarily concerning user experience and the inn-app activity. These aspects could be improved in the metaverses expected to be released this year: Otherside (by Yuga Labs, creator of Bored Apes Yacht Club NFT collection) and The Open Metaverse (by Ripple and Non-Fungible Labs, creator of FLUF World NFT collection).

Crypto finance

Most crypto companies responsible for the 2022 market crash belong to the CeFi (centralized finance) category, i.e. traditionally managed centralized firms working with crypto. Hedge fund 3AC, lenders Celsius, BlockFi and Voyager Digital, exchange FTX, trading firm Alameda Research…

Unsurprisingly, the remaining CeFi firms must deal with a massive public mistrust. Crypto lender Nexo ($NEXO, +2%) is one such example, its situation worsened by the recent allegations of money laundering.

The token of Cronos ($CRO, +18%) did much better, even after (or maybe thanks to) the 20% workforce reduction announced by the exchange last week. Cutting jobs has become a generalized trend already, with other CeFi players like Coinbase and Kraken having already laid off 20% and 30% of their teams, respectively.

DeFi as a sector is showing more optimism. Unlike CeFi, decentralized finance is managed by its code, making it resistant to classic human biases. Liquid staking service Lido ($LDO, +42%) and yield platform Aave ($AAVE, +38%) are leading the DeFi tokens’ rally.

  • New projects to look out for in 2023

An interesting, yet controversial venture was announced on Monday by the co-founders of the infamous 3AC. A new exchange called GTX would allow trading crypto claims related to the bankrupt crypto companies (a market amounting to $20 billion, according to the founders). The idea is interesting, but the crypto community and several companies have already expressed their indignation and called for investors to not participate in the $25 million fundraising, noting the 3AC’s scandalous behaviour that had purportedly accelerated the market crash.

2023 can also be the year when Jack Dosey’s Block and Telegram release their own versions of a decentralized exchange.

The crypto industry is still in the terraforming stage, and the projects that succeed in 2023 are likely to define the course of its future development.

Written by D.Center


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