A DApp is any kind of platform or application that is decentralized and based on permissionless blockchain technology. The need for such applications stems from the push to convert traditional centralized platforms into decentralized ones in order to facilitate peer-to-peer (P2P) where users interact directly rather than relying on intermediaries.
Despite being decentralized, DApps offer the same experience as normal apps do. The only major difference is that they are decentralized and utilize cryptocurrencies for utility and security reasons. To summarize, all decentralized applications require the following features:
It is worth noting that not all Dapps on the crypto market have integrated these features, although most did. For example, certain applications might not require tokens in order to work and can use different mechanisms to protect their security.
The one benefit which we have brushed by so far is decentralization. It is naturally the best advantage that DApps offer. However, there are other benefits to keep in mind as well.
For instance, a DApp cannot be managed or regulated by an institution or government. This also means that it cannot be censored, as there is no mechanism for actors, other than the community, to influence the platform.
As with other P2P systems, decentralization also ensures that the DApp always runs online and that it cannot be disturbed or offline - unless critical parts of the platform fail. Nevertheless, the main point is that these applications do not go down in the case that one part of the network or one client goes down, which is typically experienced in legacy systems.
Another benefit of DApps is the fact that they are customizable. Since most use blockchain scripting languages such as Solidity, it is incredibly easy to implement numerous rules, functions, features, and processes. By using smart contracts, they also remain open-source, which means that anyone can look into an application’s source code and analyze it.
Almost none of these benefits are present in modern-day centralized applications. This fact alone makes DApps incredibly attractive to not only developers but end-users as well. We can consider a large part of the market to be DApps since they primarily offer services rather than products. Take the following cases as clear examples:
And the list goes on.
While DApps do indeed provide a valuable proposition, we cannot claim that they are without their faults. Decentralized applications can fail due to:
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