Web 3.0 is the new generation of the internet and is changing perceptions of security, ownership, and online payments. Find out what this concept means and what it changes for your company.
What is Web3?
To understand Web3, you need to go back a few decades to Web 1.0 and Web 2.0.
Web 1.0 was “read-only.” It was the first iteration of the web, which lasted from the early 1990s to the 2000s and included websites with static content that offered little interactivity but displayed information in text or image. In Web 1.0, applications were proprietary: users could download and use them, but little else.
The early 2000s brought Web 2.0, the read-write web, or Social Web, which we still largely use today. This is a participatory web dedicated to user-generated content. Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, even Myspace, are examples of applications from this era. Web 2.0 websites run on dynamic HTML, and most applications are open source. One example is Firefox, where users can create their own applications and addons.
Finally, we come to Web3. The third generation of the web, or read-write-execute web, has decentralization at its core. This means that data is not stored on servers, but on the web itself. Users can share information directly with other users, instead of going through the traditional user-server-user path. Every change, access or movement of this data is recorded on the blockchain, which in theory makes the internet more transparent, and prevents the misuse of data.
Web3 is an “open” network in the sense that it is built from open source software, and by a community of developers. Another critical feature is that no institution mediates interactions between users. That responsability is left to users themselves. And finally, everyone can participate without authorization from a governing third party.
What are the key concepts of the Web 3.0?
Since Web3 is based on blockchain and artificial intelligence, it is inevitably intertwined with several other buzzwords, such as cryptocurrency, NFTs, metaverse, Dapps, and more.
Cryptocurrencies[A1] are a kind of digital money, assets with no intrinsic value. Furthermore, cryptocurrencies are not issued by any government, as is the case with the Euro or the Dollar, for example. With Bitcoin (the best known of the cryptocurrencies), it is possible to transfer funds from A to B anywhere in the world without having to rely on an intermediary.
Similarly to what happens all over the world, in Portugal companies are also interested in receiving payments in cryptocurrencies. Even among regulators there is a new understanding about the relevance of the revolutionary role[A2] that digital currencies are playing in the global payment system.
NFT (Non Fungible Token)
NFTs are certificates that show who owns a digital asset. These underlying assets can be anything: artwork, photographs, or even a piece of land. Like any physical asset, each NFT can only be owned by one person at one time. They confirm ownership of an asset by recording the details on a blockchain, which is public and stored on machines spread across the Internet, making it impossible to lose or destroy.
NFTs offer unlimited opportunities in the world of intellectual property. They can be accessed by a global community. And unlike traditional markets where middlemen take a significant slice of the profits, NFTs allow everyone, from content producers to video game developers, journalists, musicians or programmers to connect directly with their customers. Each purchase is documented on the blockchain and the buyer and creator are uniquely identified. This level of transparency stimulates viral communities and fans and could bring about a new era of freelance workers – a change also known as the tokenization of work.
The Metaverse is a set of online spaces where people can work, socialize and exist as avatars. In short, a virtual world, parallel to our reality. The growth of the Multiverse, for instance, has the potential to reshape the way people interact at work and redefine digital collaboration. The metaverse can also provide those interactive moments that video conferencing and chat tools simply don’t allow.
The banking system is one of the best examples of centralization[A3] : all transfers between an end customer and a merchant have to go through a bank. Decentralized Finance works the opposite way. This emerging, open and global financial technology challenges traditional financial systems by eliminating intermediaries, allowing individuals to use financial services regardless of who or where they are.
A smart contract is a mechanism that involves digital assets and two or more parties. For a transaction on a blockchain network to occur, a smart contract must ensure that execution policies are satisfied. For example, if a car sales transaction system is run on a blockchain application, rules will be established for what makes up a successful transaction. If these rules are not met, such as if the customer’s credit history does not meet the requirements, the application triggers an alert and the transaction is automatically cancelled.
Easypay, the future of payments
Web 3.0 offers a seismic opportunity for innovation for companies and governments. This is a path to make organizations more competitive, create better experiences[A4] and bring talent and knowledge to Portugal in an area that will be critical to the financial system and the functioning of future societies.
At easypay we develop innovative payment solutions for every business. If you would like to start preparing your business for Web 3.0 with innovative payment methods, credit for online purchases, installment payments, MB Way and many others, contact our team.