2021 has been a blockbuster year for the crypto space, led by buzzwords like Metaverse, NFTs, DeFi, Scaling solutions, and more. But it wasn’t just the crypto lexicon that saw growth. Popular crypto assets scaled all-time highs, institutional buyers went berserk, and countries turned more accommodative towards specific cryptos.
The year even saw leading crypto exchanges like
list Web 3.0-relevant tokens on their platforms, thereby marking the advent of a new era where crypto value and technology will soon outpace the sentimental blocks. But that’s merely scratching the surface when it comes to ascertaining the positioning of the crypto space in 2021.
And while there are several highlights and events to talk about, we have collated 10 of the most promising, era-defining events that have usurped the space, driven crypto adoption at breakthrough rates, and ensured that the investors have their hands and minds full for 2022.
If it is the performance of the leading crypto players that interests you, 2021 has arguably been one of the best years for the likes of Bitcoin, Binance Coin, Cardano, Solana, and Ethereum. These crypto-assets scaled newer all-time highs in 2021, with Bitcoin breaching the $68K mark back in November.
When the physical real-estate market saw restricted adoption due to the covid threats, a concept relevant to ‘Virtual Land’ came to the fore. 2021 saw the growth of Blockchains like Decentraland and Sandbox, which allow investors and participants to purchase virtual land, resources, digital assets, and whatnot using utility tokens like MANA and SAND.
And that is what scaled the adoption of 2021’s most popular buzzword, i.e., the Metaverse. Plus, if you are interested in knowing which metaverse tokens are making all the noise, even at the fag end of 2021, you can find the most credible ones listed at
In an era where even centralized digital payments were becoming pedestrian, the concept of Decentralized Finance came across as a breath of fresh air. The world that only saw crypto as a store of value started coming to terms with the underrated aspects of crypto staking, liquidity farming, lending, DEXs, P2P transactions, and FinTech products integrated on-chain.
Simply put, 2021 allowed us to witness that every financial product or service can be offered over the Blockchain to maintain speeds, transparency, and cost-effectiveness. And that is exactly what made the DeFi token prices surge, and new crypto assets like REQ and COTI show up across leading crypto exchanges.
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The year saw several Blockchains taking the lead in expanding the capabilities of their respective ecosystems or layer-1 with new scaling solutions, i.e., new frameworks built atop the existing ones. And while the entire concept of scaling a blockchain requires a separate topic of its own, consider it an initiative that allows the network to accommodate newer resources like DeFi, NFTs, and more, at lesser costs and with minimum waiting times.
And while Bitcoin’s lighting network and Ethereum’s Plasma are some of the leading layer-2 scaling solutions, Polygon (MATIC) showed up as an entire layer-2 market, intending to resolve issues related to slow finality, scalability, and higher gas fees, relevant to the Ethereum or the base protocol.
Value over hype
Despite meme coins becoming popular in 2021, people started looking at these hyped crypto players with an analytical eye. As we move closer to 2022, the range relevant to a memecoin or any other volatile crypto asset seems to be driven more by the value metrics, i.e., trading volume, global market cap, and more.
Also, with several tokens being considered the Web 3.0 crusaders in the years to come, the value-over-hype scenario is expected to persist.
Tesla and Bitcoin purchase
Despite ‘Crypto Hype’ taking the backstage in 2021, there was no stopping Elon Musk’s innuendos and cryptic tweets. But then, Tesla actually made a positive move in 2021 by purchasing $1.5 billion worth of BTC, making the investors upbeat about the future of the largest crypto player by market cap. And Tesla’s bold vision to put BTC on the balance sheet was also shared by Microstrategy, making 2021 a great year for institutional buying.
Advent of NFTs
For those considering NFTs as a fad, 2021 was nothing short of an eye-opener. While there were quite a few NFT-relevant tokens to show up in 2021, courtesy of their additional utilities, it was the massive $69.3 million’ Everydays: the First 5000 Days’ sale that amazed the art world by catapulting the entire concept to fame.
And for those who are still stuck at questions like ‘
What are NFTs
?’ and ‘How are they useful?’, 2022 will bring in new players into the mix, thereby clearing doubts and speeding up global adoption.
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If all these events weren’t enough, 2021 even saw Bitcoin getting recognized as a legal tender in El Salvador back in September. And while this was the biggest event in terms of generating crypto credibility, 2022 might see other countries like Zimbabwe pondering similar thoughts with urgency.
$3 trillion market cap
Another crypto highlight that surfaced back in November was the overall market capitalization that surpassed the likes of Apple and Microsoft at over $3 trillion. And in 2022, we might see the crypto market cap chasing that of gold with full force.
After years of speculation, Bitcoin Exchange-Traded Funds or ETFs finally made it to the leading stock exchanges. And this introduction was yet another step closer to the global recognition of Bitcoin as a reliable asset.
Also, while the price of one Bitcoin ETF is still primarily linked to one unit of BTC, it can incorporate other asset values as well to help buyers mitigate risk and diversify their corpus.
The road ahead!
These events had a major impact on crypto popularity in 2021. And that is exactly what drives investor optimism right into 2022. Unlike 2020, where the crypto market was more of one-dimensional trading and investing platform, the space, led by exchanges like
, has become use-case-specific with Metaverse, DeFi, NFT, and category-relevant tokens making investing more balanced and approachable.
While the prices will continue to show erratic trends, courtesy of the dwindling buying-selling ratios, from here, it will be the sheer value that will drive the crypto market further.
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