Blockchain Ecosystems: Spotlight on Binance Crypto Services
It all started in 2017 when Changpeng Zhao (CZ) founded Binance. It rapidly became one of the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world and boasted a daily trading volume of over $1 billion and a market capitalization of $1.3 billion only half a year later. Intensifying restrictions on the industry in mainland China had a limited impact on Binance. CZ’s Canadian citizenship allowed him to look the other way, while beating competition weakened by the regulations. An early pivotal decision to add key features such as extensive multi-language support, mobile applications, and supportive infrastructure for as many digital assets as possible contributed to Binance’s success. Since Binance found a new home in Malta, known for its attractive business environment, the company has built far more than just the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world. It created a blockchain ecosystem – a big family of complementary services for cryptocurrency traders, investors, and developers. Here is a brief overview of the Binance ecosystem and the various services it provides.
Today, Binance Exchange is the most popular global cryptocurrency exchange platform with a billion dollar daily trading volume. About 30-40% of that is Bitcoin/USDT pair trading, while USDT is the most traded asset with about 70% of the volume. The exchange that can be used via desktop and mobile offers 24/7 support and connects to a wide diversity of third party trading applications via its fast API. When Binance launched, it introduced its native exchange token called BNB to provide traders with a discount on fees, if they pay them with BNB. Since then BNB has evolved: it has now more than 120 use cases and is increasingly becoming one of the most widely-used utility tokens. Recently, it also became possible to trade margin on Binance via Binance Futures, its brand-new platform. The exchange offers a variety of opportunities for crypto traders and investors.
Binance does not only offer a crypto-to-crypto exchange. It also bridges fiat-to-crypto. For instance, one can easily exchange the Euro (EUR) or British Pounds (GBP) with Bitcoin and Ethereum in Europe on Binance Jersey. The aim is pretty straightforward: to increase the use of cryptocurrencies in Europe. With looming uncertainties for fiat currencies in Europe associated with political decisions like Brexit, digital assets have increasingly become a safe haven for investors worried about economic instability.
Binance DEX is a decentralized exchange built on top of the Binance Chain, a new blockchain platform launched by the Binance community for creating and transferring tokens in a fast and efficient manner. BNB is used as the native token for the blockchain to pay for things that you can do on the platform, including fees. DEX enables users to exchange digital assets with each other without depositing funds into a central entity – something that the crypto community has always wanted. Starting off with BNB as the native coin, users are able to send, receive, issue, burn, freeze, and unfreeze digital assets as well as propose new asset additions to Binance DEX.
Decentralized wallet applications make it safe to hold digital assets using Trust Wallet, which stores one’s private key locally, allowing for the full control of the holdings. Trust Wallet is the official cryptocurrency wallet offered by Binance. The application is decentralized and easy to use on mobile. The amount of digital assets that can be stored using Trust Wallet has been growing exponentially.
BNB and Its Use
According to Binance, there are many ways to use BNB beyond the Binance ecosystem. Their list includes paying for goods and services with BNB via TravelbyBit or Pundi X merchant POS systems around the world, booking hotels and flights on travel booking platforms such as TravelbyBit and Trip.io, purchasing virtual gifts via Gifto, hiring freelancers, earning in-game rewards on VIBEHub, buying real estate on property listing websites such as Propy, as well as storing and using BNB through built-in wallets on Samsung and HTC smartphones. Binance also stresses that non-crypto holders can get access to BNB courtesy of a BNB exchange-traded product, which is now listed on SIX Swiss Exchange.
“BNB is at the forefront of many applications driving further crypto adoption. Over the past two years, we’ve collaborated with blockchain and non-blockchain companies to expand BNB’s use case.”– Binance blog
Binance offers a token launch platform that can be utilized to support transformative blockchain projects. Binance Launchpad enables airdrops and token distributions. The platform has been used for many launches, including Bittorrent and Matic. Binance Launchpad ensures that tokens have enough body to launch. Token acquisition works via a lottery system: 1 lottery ticket = 100 BNB. The more BNB one holds, the more privileges s/he receives during token sales.
Binance Academy offers a wealth of information that can be used to learn everything there is to know about blockchains, trading, projects, cryptocurrencies, and tokens. The Academy focuses extensively on security, from common scams to fingerprint identification. As many users remain unfamiliar with security issues associated with cryptocurrency trading, Binance Academy steps in to educate those who want to learn more.
Blockchain Charity Foundation
Blockchain Charity Foundation (BCF) is Binance’s non-profit arm dedicated to the advancement of blockchain-enabled philanthropy, while providing transparency in charitable donations. Currently, BCF’s charity campaigns focus on improving the living conditions of refugees and providing healthy food for children in African countries. BCF’s efforts have included feeding over 5,000 children and aiding over a thousand disaster victims with supplies. The foundation, initiated by Binance, is headed by Helen Hai, UNIDO Goodwill Ambassador, in collaboration with Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, former President of Malta and current President of EuroChild.
To conclude, Binance is more than an exchange. It is an ecosystem of crypto services that includes different types of exchanges, wallets to safely store one’s digital assets, education to increase adoption, charitable giving, and a platform that entrepreneurs can use to launch their projects. So far Binance has managed to combine complementary services in a well-functioning network. Whether crypto traders and investors continue to rely on Binance’s offerings will be determined by its strategic decisions and growth going forward.
Contributed by @LordCatoshi