Bitcoin ordinals have been the talk of the town for a bit now. Without a doubt, the king crypto had to overshadow all altcoins yet again.
On July 09, 2023, Bitcoin Ordinals reached a volume of 385,920 inscriptions per day marking it as the highest ever daily inscriptions on the network.
On the other side, NFTs on Ethereum are going through their worst phase.
What are Bitcoin Ordinals
Bitcoin ordinals are essentially NFTs that are on the Bitcoin network. They were first created by Casey Rodarmor on December 14, 2022. Since then ordinals have picked up pace rapidly to reach the current levels.
The Ordinals Protocol allows Bitcoin users to embed information into Satoshi, the smallest unit of a Bitcoin. The information is typically in the form of a text, image, video, audio, application, documents and a few other categories.
Comparison with Ethereum NFTs
On Ethereum, NFTs were created using smart contracts which are essentially pieces of code which are automatically executed. A smart contract controls the creation of one NFT in ERC-721 and more than one NFTs in ERC-1155.
Note: ERC stands for Ethereum Request for Comments. ERCs are basically proposals to create standardized tokens to create uniformity.
However, Bitcoin does not have smart contract functionality, which made it almost impossible to create NFTs on the network.
That changed with the Ordinal Theory which states that each Satoshi in the Bitcoin network can be transacted individually. This led to the writing of information into the first Satoshi by Casey Rodarmor which later became the first Bitcoin Ordinal.
Why Bitcoin Ordinals Have Overshadowed Ethereum NFTs
Ethereum NFTs are currently going possibly through their worst phase because of several factors.
- Most NFTs including the popular ones such as Bored Ape, Crypto Kitties, Crypto Punk and several others lack any real world usage. They are show pieces at best. Bitcoin Ordinals are currently trending because they are new and a fad among NFT users.
- Utility NFTs such as gaming NFTs are not getting attention due to the low quality of blockchain games. Top game producers like Activision, Rockstar Games and several others currently prefer not to venture into blockchain games because of a large traditional gaming market.
- Another reason for the crash of Ethereum NFTs are the high gas fees. A calculation of daily ordinals minting vs daily fees paid shows that ordinals cost less than a dollar(70 cents approx.) to mint Ordinals on Bitcoin.
Why Bitcoin Ordinals Aren’t That Expensive To Mint
Daily inscription volumes have skyrocketed in April 2023. This was due to the reduction in network fees in Bitcoin during late April and early May. After that period there was a dramatic fall in prices.
Recently, several protocols were helpful in slashing fees. One of them is the recently published Bitcoin BRC-69 standard by Luminex which claims to slash ordinal minting fees by 90%.
This also addresses a much greater challenge that Bitcoin Ordinals could have clogged the Bitcoin network by raising fees.
Cost of Minting Ordinals
If we do some calculations, we can easily obtain the cost of minting Ordinals On 10 July 2023, the total fees collected for Ordinal mints was $72,356 and 256,680 Ordinals were minted.
This makes the cost to mint an ordinal as $0.28 or 28 cents. On Ethereum, the cost to mint an NFT can go as high as $100 for an average NFT. Hence, there is currently a race to mint NFTs on Bitcoin.
However, the success of NFTs can be gauged only after the initial euphoria ends or reduces. This is because during the early phases of Ethereum NFTs, the craze to buy or mint them were much higher than what we see with Bitcoin Ordinals today.
Bitcoin NFTs or Ordinals are an innovative trend which shows that nothing is impossible when entire communities collaborate to make something happen.
Despite having no smart contract functionality, Bitcoin NFTs were made possible by inscribing single Satoshi with information.
With community support this trend has become popular and have now shadowed Ethereum NFTs. However, there is still much time to call it a success. Till then we can hope the best for Bitcoin Ordinals.
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