Blocto: Crypto Portal for the Masses
As an infrastructure play with DeFi and Metaverse ambitions, Blocto stands out due to its hyper-targeting of ordinary people. The project allows users to make payments, trade assets, buy and display NFTs, and eventually even play blockchain games – all across different chains yet all inside one mobile application. Having launched a successful and fast-growing wallet with a comprehensive ecosystem in development, Blocto is poised to finally bring blockchain to the mainstream.
As a chain-agnostic project, Blocto is currently supported on Flow, Ethereum, Solana, BSC, Avalanche, and Polygon, with more networks to be added in the future, including Near and Polkadot. The project’s co-founder and CEO, Hsuan Lee, doesn’t believe that the layer 1 blockchain competition will end with only one winner within the next 3-5 years. Therefore, cross-chain functionality represents a significant opportunity for the foreseeable future. Blocto capitalizes by drastically improving the user-friendliness of such mechanisms. Already profitable, the Blocto wallet serves roughly 1 million users, with 70% month-over-month growth, and has helped users manage over $1 billion worth of cryptocurrency.
Too Many Wallets
Popular wallets such as Metamask and Trustwallet may seem straightforward to crypto enthusiasts but are actually quite intimidating from a layman’s perspective. They do not support registration via an email address or social media account. Confusion can also arise at multiple points during their cumbersome and jargon-filled onboarding procedure. For instance, beginners might not intuitively grasp the difference between their seed phrase and wallet password. Alternative options like Formatic and Torus improve upon user experience. They streamline registration through email addresses or phone numbers and offer SDK integration for dApp access within their ecosystem. However, these wallets fail to consider the inconvenience of gas fee payments. To use dApps, users must have their own ETH, MATIC, or corresponding cryptocurrency available to pay for fees. This obstacle halts crypto novices from immediate participation in blockchain activities. While some might be willing to research and obtain said coins by themselves, a significant portion won’t and will end their crypto journey.
An additional weakness of wallets like Bitski and Fortmatic is that they are essentially custodial experiences. This simplifies the on-ramp process but may be perceived as unsafe once users accumulate experience and start looking for a more decentralized, self-reliant option. Some of these wallets can shift to a non-custodial structure, but users have no way to ascertain that their private keys have been completely wiped on the protocol’s side besides blind trust in reputation.
The Blocto Solution
Blocto presents an accessible gateway for non-crypto natives to enter the blockchain world without the aforementioned disadvantages. The team analyzes every step of a newcomer’s journey into crypto and rectifies potential hurdles. Every facet of Blocto’s flagship wallet platform, including the onboarding experience, is designed to be easily understood by first-time customers. After downloading the mobile application from the Playstore or App store, users can log in with their email address and immediately gain access to crypto, dApps, and NFTs on different blockchains. Blocto combines the convenience of initial platform custody with a secure and verifiable method of non-custodial transition. When users choose to change from a custodial to non-custodial setup, a recovery key within the smart contract wipes away all old keys and generates new ones. New signer and recovery keys are sent to the user for self-custody, and old keys can be verified on-chain to be no longer valid. This unique mechanism grants customers peace of mind that competing wallets do not deliver.
Beyond asset storage, Blocto allows non-technical users to explore the broader blockchain ecosystem seamlessly. It fully integrates identity and payment SDKs for dApp developers on every compatible chain. This creates a synergistic relationship between the platform, dApp engineers, and end-user. Customers no longer have to download additional browser extensions or mobile apps for separate dApps. Moreover, each blockchain network’s distinct advantages – such as transaction speed on Solana – can be leveraged to enhance dApp functionality. By eliminating the need for multiple wallets and tokens, Blocto acts as an all-in-one, multichain crypto gateway with a smooth user interface. As compatibility with new chains is added on the backend, the front-end interface does not require the user to interact with all these chains separately. The native BLT token will serve as an interconnective link for customers to operate on compatible chains, all within the convenience of Blocto’s own ecosystem.
Lastly, Blocto solves the gas fee hurdle with two innovative features – fee subsidies and one shared ecosystem currency. As of now, users pay in Blocto points for all transactions, regardless of the native network. Newcomers are subsidized with Blocto points upon registration so they can gain initial dApp exposure for free. So far, the project has given out around $500,000 worth of Blocto points at a rate of $10,000 per week and has saved users roughly $100,000 in transaction fees. More points can be acquired anytime via in-app purchases through the app store – a process familiar to all smartphone users.
“Users don’t have to know whether a website is built on Google Cloud or Amazon Web Service; they just use the service, and it works. For blockchain, it should be the same thing. Users should just go to an application, and it should work; they don’t need to know if it’s on Flow or Solana or something else.”
– Hsuan Lee, CEO of Blocto
Eventually, Blocto points will be replaced by BLT, the project’s utility and governance token. Because all ecosystem transactions can be settled in BLT, customers are able to operate dApps without performing any asset conversions. Hsuan asserts: “Since we have smart contract wallets built on all the chains we support, we can do meta-transactions. If someone is sending USDC on Ethereum, they don’t need to pay fees in ETH. We allow them to pay gas directly in USDC or to use Blocto points or BLT.”
The project is also developing complementary products beyond its flagship wallet. BloctoSwap is an active decentralized exchange that currently sees an average of $500,000 to $5 million in daily trading volume. It enables cross-chain transfers between Ethereum and Flow, and the team is working to integrate more bridgeable networks. Likewise, BloctoBay is a decentralized marketplace where users can easily acquire and show off their NFTs. The two applications are first-of-their-kind built atop the Flow blockchain. Hsuan explains his choice of Flow as the primary chain: “Flow is targeting the exact same audience as us. They were working with NBA, Ubisoft, Warner Music Group to bring applications that appeal to NBA fans, MotoGP fans, CNN readers… and not necessarily blockchain enthusiasts.” Currently, Blocto runs the 3rd biggest node on the Flow network that constitutes more than 80% of all FLOW delegators. Further down the pipeline, a cross-chain AMM (Blocto Balancer) and decentralized revenue-sharing pool (Blocto Vault) are in the works.
Team Blocto United.
Mentha believes Blocto has the foundations to become a cross-chain, web 3.0 hub that’s tailor-made for the mass market. Beneath the surface, Blocto conducts its own bridging, pooling, token wrapping, minting, and burning mechanisms to create a seamless user experience. This streamlined UX creates valuable user stickiness that carries over to their entire product ecosystem. Blocto’s vision is “to become the entrance for normal people into the crypto space.” This concise yet ambitious goal has attracted several industry veterans to join the project. The team has expanded to 24 members who have extensive work experience at cryptocurrency exchanges, layer one protocols, and decentralized applications. In addition, Blocto has attracted prominent supporters including: Dapper Labs, Animoca Brands, Alameda Research, Quantstamp, Roham Gharegozlou, and Mark Cuban. Blocto’s strong team, product design, and unwavering focus on mainstream customers bodes well for future growth prospects.
Disclosure: Mentha Partners may hold an economic interest or serve in an advisory role to the project. This article does not constitute financial, investment or legal advice but is for informational purposes only.