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Everything you need to know about dApps

By June 7, 2022June 17th, 2022No Comments

Apps have become a part of our everyday life. We download social apps, learning apps, bank apps, game apps, and the list goes on. As with everything else in life, things evolve, get better, faster, and simpler. We are ushering in a new wave of technology: the blockchain, cryptocurrency, defi, smart contracts, DApps and more. 

dApps:

Decentralized applications (dApps) are digital applications or programs that exist and run on a blockchain or peer-to-peer (P2P) network of computers instead of a single computer. DApps (also called “dapps”) are outside the purview and control of a single authority. DApps—which are often built on the Ethereum platform—can be developed for a variety of purposes including gaming, finance, and social media.


So unlike apps that report back to the company’s server it belongs to and only the companies have access to, DApps are “open source” meaning we can all see the source code. DApps promotes user privacy. With Dapps, essentially no user data is shared with third parties that could link a user to sensitive financial details.

Advantages of dApps

Many of the advantages of dApps center around the program’s ability to safeguard user privacy. With decentralized apps, users do not need to submit their personal information to use the function the app provides. DApps use smart contracts to complete the transaction between two anonymous parties without the need to rely on a central authority.

You can get paid for your data instead of the big centralized search engines. DApps are run by smart contracts on a blockchain. A smart contract is a contract written in code and is meant to perform any actions that are programmed into it on time every time through a DApp, just peer to peer. In short, smart contracts can do a variety of things and can get pretty complex. 

Proponents interested in free speech point out that dApps can be developed as alternative social media platforms. A decentralized social media platform would be resistant to censorship because no single participant on the blockchain can delete messages or block messages from being posted.

Ethereum is a flexible platform for creating new dApps, providing the infrastructure needed for developers to focus their efforts on finding innovative uses for digital applications. This could enable rapid deployment of dApps in a variety of industries including banking and finance, gaming, social media, and online shopping.

Disadvantages

The use of dApps is still in the early stages, and thus it is experimental and prone to certain problems and unknowns. There are questions as to whether the applications will be able to scale effectively, particularly in the event that an app requires significant computations and overloads a network, causing network congestion.

The ability to develop a user-friendly interface is another concern. Most users of apps developed by traditional centralized institutions have an ease-of-use expectation that encourages them to use and interact with the app. Getting people to transition to dApps will require developers to create an end user experience and level of performance that rivals already popular and established programs.

The challenge of doing code modifications is another limitation of dApps. Once deployed, a dApp will likely need ongoing changes for the purposes of making enhancements or to correct bugs or security risks. According to Ethereum, it can be challenging for developers to make needed updates to dApps because the data and code published to the blockchain are hard to modify.

Pros

  • Promotes user privacy
  • Resists censorship
  • Flexible platform enables dApp development

Cons

  • Experimental, may not be able to scale
  • Challenges in developing a user-friendly interface
  • Difficult to make needed code modifications

There are many DApps available just like there are apps, gaming, social, gambling, exchanges, and investing.

FUN FACT: bitcoin is the first DApp built to send value. It is a wallet to wallet smart contract made possible on the Bitcoin blockchain. Here are a few other examples