Bitcoin Price: US$40,084.88 (+0.47%)
Ethereum Price: US$ 2,235.02 (-0.34%)
Eco, the developer of the Beam wallet, has acquired the Web3 shopping app Join, enabling integration between the two platforms. This acquisition will allow Beam wallet users to make Amazon and Shopify purchases directly. The Beam wallet operates on the Optimism and Base networks and currently utilises stablecoins for payments and gas fees. Eco has set up a waitlist for the upcoming integration, which is scheduled to go live in February. Join’s CEO, Tom Dean, believes this integration will propel Web3 stablecoin payments into mainstream use. In a separate development, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has extended its decision timeline for Grayscale Investments’ spot Ether exchange-traded fund (ETF), opening the application to public comments and pushing the decision deadline by 35 days. Meanwhile, Polygon Labs and Warner Music Group have announced the grant recipients for their Web3 Music Accelerator program, focusing on projects at the intersection of Web3 and music. The chosen projects include MITH, a fan engagement platform offering AI-driven insights for artists, and the Muus Collective, creating fashion-centric experiences, mobile games, and digital collectibles. This initiative aims to foster innovation in decentralised music production and distribution, artist-fan communities, ticketing solutions, and interactive technology integration.
A developer known as “Mini Doge” has inscribed the classic 1990s first-person shooter game Doom onto the Dogecoin blockchain using the Dogecoin Ordinals protocol. This allows anyone to play the game on their computers or mobile phones by accessing the inscription link. The free version of Doom contained nine game levels and was inscribed to celebrate the game’s 30th anniversary, avoiding legal issues. The Ordinals protocol, initially on Bitcoin and later on Litecoin, enables users to inscribe images, videos, and audio onto blockchains. Dogecoin saw a surge in transactions, reaching a new 24-hour record of 1.2 million transactions, driven by the arrival of the Ordinals protocol. In a separate development, Space and Time has released an open-source GPU acceleration framework called Blitzar for zero-knowledge proof (ZK-proof) protocols, optimising encryption technology in the Web3 ecosystem. The framework is designed to accelerate computationally intensive tasks, particularly multi-scalar multiplication, which is essential for ZK-proof generation. Meanwhile, Bitwise, an asset management firm, made the Bitcoin address of its spot BTC exchange-traded fund (ETF) public, becoming the first among 10 issuers to do so. The wallet received tips and donations, including Bitcoin ordinals and rare satoshis, within hours of being public. The move was praised by many, but some questioned the use of a single-key wallet instead of a more secure multisig wallet.
In 2023, Polygon, a scaling solution for Ethereum, nearly equalled Ethereum’s user acquisition with 15.24 million users, slightly less than Ethereum’s 15.4 million, according to Flipside, a blockchain analytics firm. An “acquired user” was defined as someone conducting at least two transactions on a blockchain, with at least one in 2023. Despite leading in the first half of the year, Polygon was surpassed by Ethereum in the second half. Bitcoin ranked third with 10.65 million users, and a total of 62 million acquired users were recorded across eight tracked blockchains. Flipside observed a peak in user acquisition in May, followed by a gradual decline. In a separate development, controversy surrounded the SAVM token issuance by SatoshiVM, with concerns over a few wallets controlling a significant part of the initial token supply, leading to a dump on the market. Some investors faced criticism for selling their allocations shortly after issuance, prompting SatoshiVM to host a community ask-me-anything session. Additionally, a Deutsche Bank survey revealed that over one-third of respondents anticipated Bitcoin prices dropping below $20,000 by year-end, with more expecting the cryptocurrency’s disappearance than its continuation. Despite the approval of spot Bitcoin ETFs in the U.S., concerns about potential collapses and regulatory crackdowns contributed to negative sentiment. The survey also highlighted a lack of understanding of cryptocurrencies among participants.
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