How NFTs Could Change in the Future: An In-Depth Exploration of Exciting Applications

A woman standing in front of art by Andy Warhol and Beeple
Credit: Tyrone Siu - Reuters /

NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, have surged in popularity in recent years. They are digital assets that use blockchain technology to prove ownership and authenticity of a unique item or piece of content. This can potentially revolutionize many industries, including art, music, gaming, and more.

NFTs have a long and fascinating history that spans decades. The concept of NFTs can be traced back to the 1990s when the first digital collectibles were created and traded, in particular the Chron X and Sanctum digital collectible card games, which were released in 1997 and 1998. respectively. These digital items were initially stored on centralized servers and users did not own actual copies of the collectibles, instead they owned the medium (i.e, the game) on which the collectible was presented.

With the advent of blockchain technology, decentralized and truly ownable digital collectibles became possible. The first NFT was developed in 2014, with the Quantum NFT on the Namecoin blockchain. However, after the creation of Ethereum (ETH), NFTs became more accessible.

CryptoKitties, the first widely popular NFT project, were first introduced on the Ethereum blockchain in 2017. NFTs soon gained popularity among digital artists, musicians, and gamers as a way to monetize their content and ensure that it remained unique and protected. The Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) brought NFTs in the mainstream during 2020 and 2021, with the monkey-themed PFPs selling for over 6 figures a piece. Since then, NFTs have evolved into several exciting applications and use cases:

Art: One of the most well-known uses of NFTs is in the art world. NFTs have made it possible for digital artists to monetize their work and protect it from being copied or stolen. In addition, blockchain technology has opened up a whole new market for digital art, and some NFTs have sold for millions of dollars at auction. 

Music: The music industry is another industry that NFTs are disrupting. Musicians can now sell unique, limited-edition digital copies of their music, which can be traded or collected like traditional physical albums. NFTs give artists a new way to monetize their music and connect with fans, and it allows fans to own a piece of their favorite artist's history. 

Gaming: NFTs are also making a significant impact in the gaming industry. NFTs can represent unique virtual items, such as rare weapons or special skins. Players can collect and trade these NFTs, adding a new level of value and ownership to their gaming experience. 

Real Estate: NFTs can also represent virtual real estate, such as virtual plots of land in online gaming worlds. NFTs open up new opportunities for players to own and monetize their virtual property, just as they would with real-world real estate. 

Collectibles: Finally, NFTs can potentially become the new standard for collectibles. Whether it's trading cards, sports memorabilia, or any other type of collectible, NFTs offer a secure, unique, and easy way to prove ownership and authenticity.

Several platforms are investigating the utilization NFTs within the social metaverse, which includes live-action video series. One platform, Looking Glass Labs, is developing a live-action web series called GenZeroes that can only be accessed by individuals possessing the related NFT. The platform is planning for the viewers of the web series to access it by purchasing NFTs from House of Kibaa. The NFTs will allow holders to view the series and obtain digital comics and collectible items. This is similar to NFT ticketing, where users can buy blockchain-based tickets to gain access to events or shows, with the NFTs even offering additional benefits.

One trend that is emerging is the development of NFTs compatible with multiple blockchains, making it easier for users to trade and collect NFTs across different platforms, resulting in a more seamless and accessible NFT market.

Another trend is the growth of Decentralized Finance (DeFi) applications utilizing NFTs. NFT Finance (NFTfi) allows NFT to be used in various financial applications, such as collateral for loans, participating in investment opportunities, and managing risk and exposure in financial markets. This trend is expected to grow as the benefits of NFTs become more widely recognized.

Mainstream industries are also starting to recognize the potential of NFTs, and we can expect to see greater adoption in the future. From sports teams selling unique fan merchandise to product manufacturers using NFTs to prove authenticity, the potential uses for NFTs are limitless.

Then there is the development of customizable NFTs, which include NFTs that allow for the transfer of specific properties or rights or NFTs that can be updated with new information or data over time. We may see a continued expansion of NFT marketplaces and exchanges, making it easier for users to buy, sell, and trade NFTs. This will create new opportunities for artists, musicians, and content creators to monetize their work.

NFTs are a rapidly evolving technology that has the potential to revolutionize many industries. From art and music to gaming and finance, the uses for NFTs are diverse and exciting. As technology advances, more creative and innovative use cases for NFTs may emerge. So whether you're a collector, an artist, or simply a curious observer, the future of NFTs will surely be an exciting and transformative time.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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Anthony Clarke

Anthony Clarke has been involved in the cryptocurrency space as a writer and investor since 2017. Since getting involved in the crypto space, he has been fascinated by the many new applications, technologies and tools in the blockchain ecosystem. Anthony has a strong interest in Blockchain tech, Defi, NFTs, P2E Gaming and many other topics.

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