Polkadot is a project created to combat the interoperability issue of the blockchain industry. While there is an array of similar projects with the same goal, Polkadot stands out as a proven success with an ecosystem of 500+ different projects capable of interacting easily with one other. In this piece, we will discuss some of the projects in the Polkadot ecosystem with the potential for massive growth in the coming years.
The Polkadot Ecosystem – An Overview
Polkadot is a network protocol that facilitates interaction between specialized blockchains, thereby allowing the seamless transfer of any type of data across any type of blockchain. Polkadot is also a secure and scalable network for building decentralized applications (dApps) and blockchains using the Substrate development framework.
Polkadot was launched in May 2020. It is the flagship project of the Web3 Foundation, a Swiss foundation created to fund the development of applications for decentralized web software protocols. The Web3 Foundation was co-founded by Dr.Gavin Wood, the visioner of Polkadot, who published the project’s white paper as far back as October 2016.
Polkadot was created to promote true blockchain interoperability by enabling the cross-chain transfer of any form of data or asset, not just tokens. To this end, Polkadot has a unique architecture consisting of four main structures – the relay chain, parachains, parathreads, and bridges.
The relay chain is the core network of the Polkadot ecosystem. It is responsible for maintaining the cross-chain interoperability of all chains on the Polkadot network. Also, all blockchains on Polkadot share the same security with the Polkadot relay chain. Parachains are individual blockchains connected to the relay chain. Although Polkadot has a “shared-security model,” each parachain is an independent blockchain with its own token and network rules. Blockchains are usually required to lease a slot to operate as a parachain on the Polkadot network.Parathreads are similar to Parachains but operate a pay-as-you-go model. These blockchains do not need to lease a parachain slot as they only work when needed. These chains have a slower block time but still, share the same security and interoperability as the Polkadot network.Bridges are protocols that allow parachains and parathreads to interact with external networks such as Ethereum and Bitcoin.
With these elements, Polkadot is able to create a cross-chain environment that enables scalability, security, and interoperability. Due to these merits, the Polkadot network has quickly developed into a vibrant ecosystem, with a continuous influx of new projects.
Here is a Polkadot ecosystem coins list based on market cap. You should note that this list is not exhaustive but only provides an overview of the top pick for 2022.
Top Polkadot Ecosystem Coins By Market Cap
#1 Polkadot (DOT)
Market Cap: $7 Billion
Circulating supply: 1.12 Billion tokens
DOT is the native coin of the Polkadot chain. It powers the network and is used for payment of transaction fees. Holders of DOT are empowered to partake in the network’s governance by voting on certain issues, including any proposed protocol upgrades.
Another use case of DOT tokens is a staking reward to the network validators who contribute to maintaining the network’s security. The DOT is also utilized in adding a new parachain to the Polkadot network via a process known as “bonding.’’ DOT is a highly-rated cryptocurrency with the 11th highest market cap in the entire crypto market.
#2 Chainlink (LINK)
Market Cap: $3 Billion
Circulating supply: 491 Billion tokens
Chainlink is a decentralized oracle network that enables the secure interaction of blockchains with data from external sources. With Chainlink, smart contracts on several chains can receive inputs and outputs from real-world sources.
Chainlink was launched on the Ethereum network in June 2017 by co-founders Steve Ellis and Sergey Nazarov. Its native token is LINK, an ERC-20 token that supports all transactions on the oracle-based network. LINK is also used to reward the network operators tasked with gathering data from off-chain sources and modifying it into an accessible format for smart contracts.
#3 Compound (COMP)
Market Cap: $394 million
Circulating Supply: 7 million tokens
Launched in September 2018, Compound is a DeFi lending protocol that runs on the Ethereum blockchain. On Compound, investors deposit assets to earn interest on their balance or take out a crypto loan.
Compound is one of the biggest DeFi platforms with a total value locked (TVL) of over $2 billion. In June 2020, Compound introduced COMP, its governance token. COMP holders can vote on any proposed changes to the protocol. They also decide on the listing of assets and the collateralization parameters of each asset.
COMP is the best-performing DeFi protocol native asset and is also the most valuable coin in the Polkadot ecosystem.
#4 Kusama (KSM)
Market Capitalization: $392 million
Circulating Supply: 8 million tokens
Known as Polkadot’s Canary network, Kusama was created in 2018 by a cofounder of Polkadot, Dr. Gavin Wood. It is a blockchain platform built to serve as a scalable and interoperable framework to test new blockchains or applications.
Kusama shares a similar codebase to Polkadot. It was designed to serve as a testbed for projects intended to deploy on Polkadot. However, several projects remain on Kusama even when fully developed.
The native coin of Kusama, KSM, was launched via an airdrop to all who participated in Polkadot’s token sale. It is used for staking, and all validators on Kusama are rewarded with newly minted KSM tokens. KSM has no fixed supply and undergoes a 10% yearly inflation. KSM is the second most valuable coin in the Polkadot ecosystem.
#5 Ankr (ANKR)
Market Cap: $322 million tokens
Circulating supply: 9.66 billion tokens
Ankr is a decentralized blockchain infrastructure provider designed to enable developers and stakers to interact seamlessly with an array of blockchains. It was launched in 2017 on the Ethereum blockchain.
With Ankr, developers gain easy access to APIs and RPC nodes needed to build decentralized applications. Ankr also enables investors to stake assets across multiple networks, including Polygon (MATIC), Ethereum (ETH), BNB Smart Chain(BNB), Polkadot (DOT), Avalanche(AVAX), and Kusama (KSM).
ANKR is an ERC-20 token that serves as the native utility token of Ankr. The ANKR token is used to pay for all services on Ankr, including node deployment and API services. ANKR holders are also eligible to participate in on-chain governance.
#6 0x (ZRX)
Market Capitalization: $288 million
Circulating Supply: 847 million tokens
0x is a decentralized exchange infrastructure protocol that allows users to trade tokens across multiple blockchains. The 0x protocol operates as a liquidity aggregator that compares prices on several decentralized exchanges ensuring its users are presented with the best available deal for each trade.
All trading fees on 0x are paid with its utility token ZRX. The ZRX token also empowers its holders to participate in governance by voting on any proposals on the project. ZRX is also staked to earn passive rewards.
#7 Ontology (ONT)
Market Cap: $224 million
Circulating Supply: 875 million tokens
Ontology is a blockchain project designed to introduce decentralized identity and data solutions to web3 to promote privacy, transparency, and trust. To this end, Ontology allows individuals and enterprises to build blockchain-based solutions that suit their business needs while ensuring regulatory compliance.
The Ontology chain is also designed for interoperability as the network features three support machines – Ontology EVM, NeoVM, and WasmVM. Ontology runs a dual-token system consisting of ONT and ONG tokens.
ONT was launched via a series of community distribution and airdrops. It is the primary medium of storage and transfer on the Ontology network. ONT can also be staked to earn rewards, paid out in ONG.
#8 Moonbeam (GLMR)
Market Capitalization: $194 million
Circulating supply: 388 million tokens
Moonbeam is an Ethereum-compatible smart contract parachain on Polkadot. With Moonbeam, developers can build Solidity projects using the Ethereum developers’ tools and deploy these projects in a Polkadot environment.
Moonbeam lets Ethereum developers build DApps using tools familiar to them and integrate these projects’ unique advantages of a Substrate-based network, including on-chain governance, staking, and cross-chain integrations.
The Moonbeam network is powered by Glimmer (GLMR). All Moonbeam users need GLMR to employ the critical functions of the network. GLMR holders are also entrusted with voting rights to partake in the network’s governance.
#9 MXC (MXC)
Market Cap: $187 million
Circulating Supply: 2.64 billion tokens
MXC token is an ERC-20 utility token of the MXProtocol, a decentralized and secure data exchange network that employs low-power wide area network (LPWAN) technology. The MXC token is used to process machine-to-machine payments and device transactions on the network.
MXC is a proof-of-participation token. It is awarded to network validators based on their level of participation as well as the quality of their work.
#10 Energy Web Token (EWT)
Market Capitalization: $126 million
Circulating Supply: 30 million tokens
The Energy Web Token(EWT) is the native token of the Energy Web Chain(EWC), an open-source, proof-of-authority blockchain designed to serve as a platform for developing decentralized applications for the energy sector.
The Energy Web Chain employs most of the fundamentals of the Ethereum network. However, it is a distinct blockchain with a different consensus protocol and unique governance mechanism.
As the utility token of EWC, the Energy Web Token is used for payment of all network services. Validators on the EWC also earn EWT for processing transactions.
Where to Buy Polkadot ecosystem tokens?
The table below shows a list of cryptocurrency exchanges where these Polkadot ecosystem tokens can be easily purchased.
Polkadot TokenExchanges AvailablePolkadot (DOT)Binance, FTX, Coinbase Exchange, Gate.io, KuCoin, etc.Chainlink (LINK), Binance, Coinbase Exchange, FTX, KuCoin, Gate.io, etc.Compound (COMP)Binance, Coinone, Coinbase Exchange, Bithumb, FTX, etc.Kusama (KSM)Binance, Kraken, KuCoin, Bithumb, Gate.io, Huobi Global, etc.Ankr (ANKR)Binance, Coinbase Exchange, Kucoin, Bithumb, Huobi Global, etc.0x (ZRX)Binance, Coinbase Exchange, Bithumb, Huobi Global, Bitfinex, etc.Ontology (ONT)Binance, Huobi Global, Bithumb, Gate.io, KuCoin, etc.Moonbeam (GLMR)Binance, KuCoin, Gate.io, Huobi Global, Kraken, etc.MXC (MXC)Gate.io, Huobi Global, KuCoin, Coinbase Exchange, Bithumb, etc.Energy Web Token (EWT)KuCoin, Kraken, Gate.io, CoinEx, BitMart, etc.
The list above shows a list of tokens on the Polkadot network, which we have earmarked as favorable investment assets for the future. However, this is not investment advice. Always conduct further research before investing in any coin. In addition, you should check out other tokens in the Polkadot ecosystem, as the network boasts numerous tokens with good prospects.