Viewpoint | Differences in investment properties between Bitcoin and Ethereum, like gold and listed companies


The BTC and blockchain industries have gone their separate ways. This is not a price comparison between BTC and altcoins, but a clear bifurcation of the two development paths, and the fork is in an increasing rather than converging trend.

Although the BTC and blockchain industries still share a certain degree of sharing in the underlying technology, it may not be discussed together in the public perspective five to ten years later. BTC has become more determined on the road to stored-value assets; the blockchain has attempted to provide new production relationships, organizational forms and business models that transcend the company, changing the socio-economic operating paradigm. It’s hard to say whether there is a competitive relationship between the two, let alone the question of who is replacing it.

Judging whether something is a success or a failure depends on whether its goals and missions are achieved (or trends achieved), rather than making meaningless comparisons with non-conformities. The value of the stored value asset itself is clearly the most direct and important observation indicator of its success. But for the blockchain (including its tokens), as the goal of the new organizational form and business model is achieved, the relevant observation indicators will be more complicated. This is like evaluating the value of a going concern far more than N times more complex than evaluating static gold, so that the former has developed a large set of theories.

Among them, the market value of the original token on the chain is only a partial dimension of the blockchain. As the incentive mechanism of the public chain, the importance and necessity of the original token is an open situational problem, especially the current coinless ledger is not rare. The relationship between the public chain and its native token is loosely coupled or tightly coupled, and may require a lengthy discussion. But an obvious but often overlooked situation is that the native token itself is just a component of the chain. The public chain is essentially business-oriented rather than currency-oriented (this is fundamentally different from BTC) – just This component of the coin is the only investable object in the public chain, so its performance is infinitely magnified in the eyes of investors.

Considering that the blockchain industry represented by the (smart contract platform) public chain is still in the business confusion period, it is undeniable that it is far from reaching its intended mission, and the road ahead is full of difficulties and obstacles. But there are still many indicators that can be used to fully examine whether it is moving in the right direction, rather than stagnation or even retrogression. These metrics include at least: the number and speed of code submissions, the number of community followers and participants, the number of DApps and active users, the number of transactions on the chain, and the number of GAS consumption. From all aspects of statistics, there are indeed many virtual fires or bubbles in the blockchain industry, but the above indicators are still rising (but there is a big gap between the chain and the chain), so the overall trend is still upward, and It has not been falling since the beginning of 2018, as the price of the token.

The most representative is the world's first public chain Ethereum, whose fundamental developments are in stark contrast to ETH prices. Ethereum's community is in full swing, Vitalik is still the undisputed spiritual leader, and the slogan "Buidl, Not Hodl" is equally exciting. Ethereum did not experience major negatives throughout 2018 and 2019, and the number of DApps and user activity on the chain began to overtake competitors again – but the secondary market price of ETH has bottomed out, with the highest drop of over 90%.

Whether this contrast is explained by "valuation regression" or many other theories can be plausible to some extent. The valuation model of ETH is derived from the purpose of its design.

— As GAS to pay for transaction costs on the Ethereum blockchain, capturing the computational value of Ethereum as the world's computer. Therefore, according to the classic perspective, the most fair valuation should be multiplied by a certain multiple of the total GAS consumption in a certain period of time to derive the overall market value of ETH (can be supplemented by a specific liquidity premium factor). According to the actual GAS consumption, the pe multiple of the ETH price is indeed too high, and it is difficult to be effectively supported by the captured calculation value.

In this regard, the secondary market price movement is a stochastic process with numerous random variables, which is extremely unpredictable and uncontrollable, and can not be accurately quantified based on a certain valuation theory. Like all types of investment markets, various factors affecting the subject matter push prices to extreme points, which is a phenomenon that is never absent and recurring on the historical timeline. The crazy ICO market in 2017 can be regarded as the main hero of the ETH price surge, but it is a complete windfall. No matter whether Vitalik or the Ethereum Foundation have any plans to make Ethereum an ICO tool to pull up ETH, then the ICO market will not be able to disappoint them. Anyway, this was not the mission of Ethereum, but Vitalik has repeatedly Take the initiative to pour cold water on ICO. In general, the fundamental development of Ethereum itself has not deviated from the planned track (maybe the delay in the upgrade of Ethereum2.0 is a shortcoming), and companies with good development trends do not need to worry about the temporary stock price downturn.

A similar precedent is the dot com enterprise market value bubble burst at the turn of the century, and the investment boom has declined. From the perspective of stock prices, the Internet industry was indeed facing a disaster. But again, stock prices are just one of the observational dimensions of the state of industrial development, not all. The downturn of the Internet industry still precipitated a lot of essence, but did not stagnate or retreat. It only needed to "before the bubble can drink beer", and finally refined the giants of the contemporary Internet industry such as Amazon, Google and so on.

Similar things happen in crypto-space. Even during the 2014-2015 bear market, BTC has more and more people paying attention and holding, and the consensus is constantly expanding – but this does not mean that these positive factors will It immediately appeared on the most observable indicator of price. As the joke said: Someone lost a ring on the road at night and tried to find it under the streetlight instead of looking for the ring, just because he could see it under the streetlight. (Secondary market) The price is too easy to observe, so that it hides other indicators that should be observed. Today's BTC has become more solid on the road of value-added assets, and is increasingly recognized by the mainstream financial community (as an investable asset).

However, unlike the blockchain industry, BTC does not develop with the goal of transforming production relations. Even BTC has not become a "payment system" targeted by Nakamoto's white paper in various industries. As a new class of assets that are not self-generating cash flow, BTC's positioning has been detached from other Crypto; its impact on social and economic operations is passive, indirect, and subtle, based on people's consensus and acceptance, but not Direct involvement in the operation of the social economy – this is in stark contrast to the block model industry's aggressive attempts to actively change the relationship of production.

Under this positioning, BTC is actually "coin chain integration" – BTC currency (UTXO) itself is actually the whole meaning of the chain, not a partial dimension of the chain; once there is no currency, the chain will be lack of record objects It can't be any kind of book, so it becomes meaningless. The so-called "Bodhi has no trees, and the mirror is not Taiwan. There is nothing in it, and it is dusty." Therefore, BTC (and even all other first-generation altcoins) does not have the concept of coinless ledger. As a book that only records the ownership of static assets (including current state and historical transfer relationship), it is not important that BTC has technological innovation or change, and may even be counterproductive; while the book is constant, reliable, and secure. The most important nature, because it can lead to more deterministic expectations. The current technical attributes of BTC are generally sufficient, and too much innovation may be superfluous, or at least should be tried outside the BTC main chain.

In view of the above differences, the price correlation of BTC and blockchain industry altcoins will become weaker and weaker in the future, because they will be more and more recognized as two different kinds of things using cryptography. At present, the BTC dominance calculated by market value has exceeded 70% – although the number does not lie, it does not provide meaning in itself; and the meaning comes from how the numerical calculation formula is constructed. When the differences in the characteristics of the two things are large enough and the degree of correlation is low, constructing a calculation formula that compares the values ​​of some aspects of them loses meaning, and the calculated result is only a strong statement for the new words. No one will combine gold and the market value of listed company shares to calculate a "gold dominance" or "listed companies dominance", even if both are "investment products", even if it is indeed possible to calculate this value.

But I have to say that this does not prevent us from investing in gold and listed companies at the same time.


The ternary paradox of the interests of users, holders and shareholders of the public chain

The typical model of the current (non-pure POW) new public chain is composed of the following three:

  • (1) Public-owned chain–as the decentralized network of the underlying architecture, it is an ecological infrastructure, and is not a legal entity, and its governance and income rights are determined by tokens;
  • (2) The fund-issuing foundation – the developer of the public chain (nominally) and the owner of the public-chain token, initially the owner of all the tokens in the public chain, and then relying on the income from the coin to build the ecology, is a a non-profit, centralized legal entity;
  • (3) Public-chain ecological business product development company – is the initial builder in the ecology, developing a specific product for the end user in the public chain (the public chain itself is not a product), and is a for-profit centralized legal entity.

These three are in principle three different subjects that should be independent of each other, but in practice they are often controlled by the same group of development teams (at least in the early stages), so that they form "three brands, one team", the center The color is strong.

But as is often said: decentralization is not an end, but a means to an end. In the early days, this degree of high degree of centralization can often effectively help the development of ecological construction. After all, the development team is the person who knows the project best and is the most interested. And it is completely handed over to the community, only suitable for those cases where the public chain (including its original token) itself can be used as a deliverable product, such as BTC and major privacy coins, which are positioned in pure currency payment. The payment function is naturally available; and the public chain other than this, especially the smart contract platform, is not a product of the executable business itself, nor can it directly connect with the end user. If there is no subsequent product development on the chain to improve the ecology The public chain itself has no meaning other than speculation.

Therefore, in the case of the trinity of the public chain, the foundation and the business product development company, there are three different external groups outside the founding team to enter the public chain ecology, so there is a problem of conflicts of interest between different parties in the ecology. It is also a trouble that would not have been encountered in the classical Internet industry.

The above three external groups that enter the ecology are: (public chain products) users, (public chain tokens) holders, and development company equity investors. They are different external stakeholders that the founding team needs to face. Their respective interests and demands are often conflicted. Therefore, how to solve the conflict of interests between users, holders and shareholders of the company is already a problem on the desktop.

If the user is over-subsidized on the token economic model, the value of the token will be difficult to reflect, and the interests of the holder will be impaired. If the interests of the holder are too much concerned, various means will increase the value of the token and cause the price of the currency to rise. The user's use cost is high and the use is reduced, which affects the ecological development. On the other hand, the development team's own energy and the funds obtained from the sale of coins, if used to subsidize the public chain eco-developers, will be beneficial to the public-owned chain ecology, improve the intrinsic value of the token, but will affect the company's own business, shareholders It is difficult to benefit (unless the company's assets include tokens); but if the development team focuses on developing its own profitable products business and bringing returns to shareholders, the ecological chain construction of the public chain will lag behind, and the price of the currency will not improve.

This difficult situation has a similar experience in the early days of traditional Internet entrepreneurship, that is, whether a startup should burn the money invested by shareholders to subsidize users. On the surface, this seems to sacrifice the interests of shareholders and benefit the users, but soon the industry has reached a consensus: burning money is a good way to quickly seize the market, and shareholders can benefit from subsequent financing by pulling up the company's valuation. In any case, the results of the product development and operation of traditional Internet startups directly benefit the company itself (because there is no independent group of money holders outside the company), there is no interest between the equity and the token, entrepreneurs and The interests of equity investors are the same.

Therefore, in contrast, the Crypto circle is faced with an unprecedented ternary opposition complex situation, that is, the balance of interests between users, holders and shareholders. Although in the long run, these three can have common interests, but in the short term it is difficult to balance them all, and only mismatch in time and space.

For serious investors, deciding to invest in their tokens and/or equity requires judging which party the starting team's goal is, whether it is a large equity value, a large token value, or an expanded user base. In practice, the most common arrangement is that (short-term) users have the highest priority, (interim) pays attention to tokens, and (for the long-term) reflects shareholder returns. In some cases, the company's business is destined to be listed on the mainstream stock exchanges. At this time, it is not meaningful to invest in the company's equity unless it can withdraw from the equity investment in the form of a distribution of tokens.

Of course, for pure coin-spoken projects, you don't need to consider the above issues, and you don't expect real users anyway.


Talk about POW and POS based on the recent hot staking concept.

In fact, the contrast between the two caused a fierce debate between 2014 and 2015. At that time, the debate was on the side of the gods and the other was to support the blockchain innovation (then called crypto 2.0, the old people were impressed with the word). a group of people. It’s just that the bull market directly ruined the enthusiasm of both sides, but I didn’t expect to make a comeback during this bear market a few years later…

Of course, this time I am not going to write a memoir about the history of the year, but after experiencing the development of the industry in recent years, I will think more transcendentally about this issue.

On the technical level of POW and POS comparison, many articles have been analyzed in detail. In fact, almost all serious discussers admit that POW is more open and more missionless, but more resource intensive; POS is the opposite. Although this conclusion is not much controversial, it compares the two from the perspective of results. If you change your perspective, look for the source of the causal chain. What exactly drives people to pursue a less decentralized POS after they have a POW?

This driving force obviously does not come from a whim, but is universally and permanently generated in the encryption community – it is actually the driving force behind the shackles of programmers to get rid of the physical world and let software rule the world.

The core of POW is "workload", which can now be referred to more narrowly as "the amount of computation" – a typical physical world resource that is produced by hardware that can perform computations. But the blockchain itself is a virtual world network that was originally parallel to the physical world. When the consensus mechanism adopts POW, the virtual blockchain network is “forced” to be guarded by something from the physical world. While this kind of guardian provides the necessary security, it also brings the constraint that the provision of secure computing power is limited by the supply of hardware resources in the physical world, while the operation of the hardware itself is also subject to physical laws. limit. Both of these are rigid constraints, especially the latter, and only when there is a major breakthrough in physics theory can the upper limit be raised – and in reality this breakthrough has not occurred for many years. Not to mention the huge power consumption caused by the current POW.

For most ambitious programmers, stopping development due to physical resources is intolerable. Therefore, their efforts must be based on the software side to find ways to make the blockchain free from the constraints of physical resources, while at the same time in the so-called impossible triangle (security, decentralization, scalability) to achieve a certain balance.

Based on this attempt, Sunny King first proposed the earliest version of POS a few years ago, and was adopted by several early altcoins (dot coins, future coins). This POS version now seems to have many potential vulnerabilities and risks, but it was epoch-making in 2013 and inspired many people. On this basis, BM subsequently pioneered DPOS. Since then, there have been more and more variants, some of which are mixed with BFT, but they are all software-only consensus solutions. Even POS, after years of exploration, has become more sophisticated and sophisticated, resulting in advanced versions such as Casper (still evolving). On the contrary, if the new consensus scheme that relies on physical resources does not count as a hybrid consensus of “POW+POS”, only the recently emerging POC (or POST) will replace the physical resources required by storage with computational power.

It can be seen that the programmer's exploration achievements on the pure software side are not only faster but also greater, because this exploration is the bit world rather than the atomic world, and is not bound by the laws of physics. Although this kind of achievement weakens the permissionless under the current technological development level, it is generally believed that it can continue to progress; on the contrary, the physical resource dependence of POW is insurmountable, even if it is still the most decentralized at present. The most mature consensus mechanism.

Compared with the two, POS is more promising in terms of dynamic expectations; even if compared with the static state of the current state, POS has at least the inherent advantages of power saving, although it is particularly weak. From the product point of view, the stability and reliability of the current state is more important, so the existing blockchain selection POW is safe; but from the perspective of technological development, the dynamic trend is more important than the static status quo.

On this basis, if we look at the comparison and choice of consensus mechanisms more thoroughly, are we comparing only POW and POS, or are we comparing some of the more abstract nature? In fact, along the idea that the bit world is better than the atomic world, it can be inferred that POS is not necessarily the only way out. What we really need is to get rid of the constraints of the physical world. For this purpose, POS is only one direction that has been explored yet, but it is unique.

It is entirely conceivable that one day a genius got epiphany and came up with a mechanism that does not build a reliable consensus between the nodes based on the token on the chain – for example, based on other contributions to the network. Quantitative indicators. On the personal intuition level, this mechanism is entirely possible to be designed, but it requires some inspiration.

If you revisit the POW and POS after two or three years, you may find that the problem has evolved to another level, because the evolution of the consensus mechanism is endless.


Token economy's subversion of the company's system may be faster than expected.

The organizational structure of "company" is an abstract thing that cannot be seen, touched, and exists purely by law. Its role in the modern economy is largely similar to that of containers in maritime transport.

– As a standardized cargo packaging container. The original transport in the sea is not a container, but a variety of goods. However, the container has standardized all kinds of goods in the process of circulation, so that the object of the transportation party during operation becomes extremely simple (rather than an infinite variety of goods), so the transportation efficiency is greatly improved.

The same is true for companies. The types of businesses and assets operated in the business world are extremely complex. If there are no standard containers for “company”, if there are two parties to buy and sell a business, how to define what the business is, where the boundaries are, and which assets are included. And debt? It is basically impossible to complete this sale because the due diligence on the aforementioned issues is mission impossible. Only by encapsulating business and assets in a container like a company makes the subject matter of the transfer clearly defined – because it is legally easy to find out which rights, debts, employees, business relationships, etc. belong to this container.

Equity is the standard share of ownership of the company. As long as the transfer of equity is equal to the transfer of the virtual container of the company, the process is quite simple (not to mention some artificial regulatory factors). A typical example is the real estate industry, where a separate project company is usually set up for each site as a virtual container for that land. In this way, if the land is to be sold, the equity of the project company is actually transferred instead of the land itself, because the property rights of the container of the company are easy to be cut, the transfer procedure is simple, and the transaction tax is lower.

As a product of law (not a natural product of land), the company has the above advantages, but its shortcomings are therefore easily regulated by law, which has led to the development of regulatory arbitrage between different countries. However, this arbitrage space is currently experiencing a sharp decline. The small countries are forced by international pressure to impose "commercial substance" requirements, so that offshore companies are not so better.

So many people in the business world have begun to be vaguely aware of the need for a new type of virtual container – it must be able to encapsulate business and assets in a standardized format like a company, and not necessarily rely on any company like that. The laws of sovereign states must exist independently of sovereign jurisdiction.

The Token on the blockchain is actually playing this role. Blockchain technology not only enables money to exist independently, but also creates a new type of package that is easy to identify, divide, and transfer through tokens to package valuable assets.

And this new type of container is gradually being used quickly and intentionally. The team that works on a project has both a company and a token, and the two containers coexist; but the tendency to fully inject the value generated by the business into the token, rather than the value of the company's equity. At this time, the company's container is only a superficial shell, and its purpose may be only to accept financing (mainstream institutions can not directly invest in coins and can only invest equity), pay social security for employees, sign office leases and other formal functions, instead of Then operate for profit. Instead, the token extracts the full value of the revenue generated by the project business and even the goodwill, and becomes the container that really encapsulates the value (a typical example is the relationship between the corporate shell of binance and bnb). Whether this token should be classified in securities or other existing concept categories is probably as Feynman said, "like the significance of ornithology for birds."

Therefore, the object of real value play in the market economy has migrated from the company to the "container" of token. Old containers have no value if they are not loaded with goods and will be gradually marginalized.

Even for the investor, even if it invests in the company's equity, it can withdraw through the token that truly carries the value, instead of sticking to the traditional merger/listing exit (in fact, once the founder chooses to let the token carry the value, the company merges / Listing has no meaning).

Of course, there are still many problems with this migration that are not well resolved. Token is currently in a gray area, and if the project operator fails to deliver the value to the token as expected, it is difficult to be held accountable even if it violates the commitment to the token holder. Token itself is born out of regulation. It is of course difficult to get legal protection. It can usually be solved by other constraints of the business world.


Centralized exchanges, as an industry that monopolizes resources within the circle, have always been the focus of attention. This is actually a traditional Internet traffic business, not the original business of the blockchain industry.

In essence, what is constant is “transaction demand”, but the way to meet this demand is not necessarily a centralized exchange. Anyone who has mastered user traffic or an enterprise can theoretically try to satisfy the user's trading needs, either by themselves or through cooperation with a third party.

On the Internet, many companies have a certain level of traffic due to the provision of various services (information, community, depository, and even investment) to C-end users. They no longer want to simply act as a "stacked" role in a centralized exchange, but want to put traffic in their hands and cash in, and in various other ways to meet the user's trading needs, instead of guiding the user Flow to the exchange.

Correspondingly, the centralized exchange is also striving to expand its own ecosystem. Its business scope is not just to be an exchange (and the brokerage business that it has very early), but to expand the territory to each area with traffic entry; BAT is the same as the Internet ecosystem, based on core business divergence to seize all types of traffic portals, even offline. But according to the theory of corporate boundaries, it is impossible for a company to “internalize” everything on its own because management costs will increase beyond the transaction costs of cooperation with other market participants. At this point, the expansion of the head exchange will reach its limit, either shrinking the front line or switching to the main business.

This kind of traffic competition will lead to a changing market structure. It will not be another centralized exchange that defeats the head of the Central China Exchange, but will be a kind of commercial organization from the exchange business that has the traffic entrance.

In order to cope with this survival and evolution challenge, the head exchange, which is currently a concentrated traffic, will inevitably try to gradually change its main business over time. In the future, although the name remains unchanged, the core business has become less like a The exchange has become another form of service platform. After the "old bottled new wine", the currency security and the fire currency are still the currency security and the fire currency. It is a blockchain version of the "Musician ship" problem.


In the field of public chains, the various chains that are positioned for C and B services have been clearly divided in development.

Consistently, the public chain based on broad community consensus has positioned itself as the service C-end. At most, Ethereum has specially set up EEA to connect with enterprises. Nowadays, there are quite a few public chains that directly locate the B-side customers, instead of spending too much effort to attract community DApp developers, and even do not need to advertise too much to retail investors in the encryption community.

As with traditional B services, sales capabilities are a key factor. Therefore, the founding team of this type of public chain usually focuses on BD, and every single enterprise customer it acquires may directly bring a large amount of transaction business to the public chain. The advantage of this model is that because corporate customers have the willingness and ability to pay, once BD succeeds, there will be direct cash flow, which is safer in a bear market.

A large number of small and medium-sized enterprises will be interested in such alternative “cloud platforms” that can provide quasi-financial clearing services due to the weak construction of their own IT systems, especially considering the current severe crackdown on the environment of various types of Erqing institutions. Not only that, the public chain is based on its advantages over traditional cloud computing platforms, and it can rely on technical methods to keep customer business data confidential, and in turn can create a data trading market, the user's accumulated platform value will have a further premium.

From the perspective of ecological integrity, each chain's own stable chain on the chain will be standard, which enables the business to complete the closed loop in the chain without relying on the out-of-chain payment system.

In general, the public chain of B-side services is a bit like the early cloud computing platform business, except that the product has changed from a closed product to an open product such as a public chain (but depending on the consensus mechanism, the decentralization of each public chain) The degree is different).

In addition, from the development team, at this time, the value of the big public chain token or the value of the company's equity will have a choice, but the traditional cloud computing platform company does not have this problem.


Let's talk about the last to B business model, providing enterprise customers with productized services on blockchain. This kind of business often appears in the form of SaaS in the traditional IT industry; it is more diversified in the blockchain industry, including the traditional model of Saas and even the emerging BaaS, Layer.

2 Clearing network, public chain upper layer protocol, smart contract in Dapp form, etc., can provide users such as fast clearing (lightning network, plasma, etc.), privacy calculation, code auditing, resource, certificate, chain data analysis and other services .

This form of service provision has blurred the boundaries between “products” and “services” and is in line with the general trend of service productization. Developers seem to be products, but interactions with corporate customers are service offerings rather than Product delivery, service and product form an organic whole. After each service is provided, not only is the service fee earned, but also the contribution of the product itself. The product is the asset that is solidified and saved to the developer, and will not Not only that, but also some of these products can be pre-financed based on tokens like the public chain.

Compared with the development of the public chain, the productized service is more flexible in business, and can simultaneously span the ecology of multiple public chains, and the good birds choose to live without having to bind a certain fundamentalism. In fact, as an indispensable part of the public chain ecosystem, productized services are the interface between the public chain and the corporate customers. It is widely recognized that the public chain development team itself is also investing heavily in such development. Achieve ecological integrity.

But overall, this business model is still in a very preliminary experimental phase, some of which may be successful and others that prove to be commercially unsustainable. The difference between the service and the business customers is different: if the target customer is a customer in the blockchain industry, the financial situation of the service provider and the recipient is too great, and the bear market has no money for everyone; Customers need to find real enterprise-level needs, especially the competitive replacement of traditional enterprise customers with existing service providers is a huge challenge.

Not only that, the product development itself is faced with many challenges that cannot be controlled by itself or need to be constantly trial and error. For example, at the technical level, it is often constrained by the current state of the art of the underlying public chain, so that developers who provide productized services even consider customizing a public chain; for example, at the commercial level, whether the charging model uses traditional usage charges or blocks. The unique coin-issuing/consumption mode of the chain industry, the former is in line with the habits of traditional enterprise users and has no legal risk. The latter can be pre-funded in 1C0 mode but it is difficult to design a long-term and reasonable operation of the token economy model.

All in all, hopes and challenges coexist, especially in certain areas where services may not be available to traditional enterprise service providers. As an important participant in the public chain ecology, it is still to be developed along with the public chain.


In addition, for the development of outsourcing technology for enterprise customers, the most common is to develop the alliance chain, followed by the smart contract (group) under the specific business scenario. The current reality has proved that this to B business model is basically the end of the road, and it is no good to let your technical level and service attitude be good.

The reason for this is that the life of the blockchain lies in "the network is used" rather than the "code." The results you developed in this mode are just dead code, but the people who run the network are others, so the value generated does not belong to the code contributor. At most, it will make a hard earne (not to mention the trick.) The customer of the point is extremely thin and even owed.)

If you do a coalition chain, developers at most act as one of the insignificant peer nodes, and often even the nodes are not, but only as a pure external technical service provider); on the contrary, the enterprise player is the use of the alliance chain. And even the dominant, so the value generated by the alliance chain is also attributed to these enterprise users rather than developers. As for the smart contract in the business scenario, it has nothing to do with the developer. After all, the developer itself does not participate in the business process.

In this mode, even if the blockchain products are successful, they have little to do with the interests of the developers, and the main credit lies in those enterprise customers who use the products specifically. Although developers can exercise their own team and accumulate development experience in addition to the service fee, this side benefit does not get much premium in the capital market.

As for the next level of development, determined to develop technical standards such as Hyperledger or R3 Corda, it is even more promising, because this is the arena of the giants, the grassroots entrepreneurs go in and make a lively, delusion I can come up with a set of so-called "standards" that are commonly used in the corporate world.

This is not the same as doing public chain–the public chain is nominally an unowned "public device", but developers can sell coins in the early days; and for this so-called "nothing", the developers themselves often (through a large number of reservations) The currency is still subject to substantial control (at least impact). After all, the governance structure of the public chain is designed by itself. For every increase in the ecology of the public chain, pro rata will bring benefits to developers, and the two have a strong symbiotic relationship under the long-term incentive compatibility.

Therefore, in the blockchain industry, those who originally developed outsourcing for corporate customers have not seen a way out in the original direction, and basically have begun to transform more or less.


Regarding the B-side enterprises in the industry, some have found a way to live. Their business types can be roughly divided into several categories: self-built public chain and provide product services for customers who provide chain services for enterprise customers and outsource technology for enterprise customers.

Let me talk about the first one, that is, after the self-built public chain, let the enterprise users run some actual business in the chain. Compared with the community operation model of the C-side Dapp developed by the public chain represented by Ethereum, this model is another completely different world, because it is necessary to convince serious companies to put their business on the public chain at least at present. It is extremely difficult – the open environment of the public chain is a strange thing for enterprises, not to mention the technology of the public chain itself is far from mature, and companies are often reluctant to bear a lot of unknown risks.

Therefore, this model is very demanding on the team. In addition to developing the public chain, it also has rich commercial resources and team sales ability. It is best to have a big company with the courage to try and try to take the lead to eat crabs (usually in the public chain It is necessary to introduce such enterprises as both investors and cornerstone users. The good news is that some projects in the industry have been done very well, enabling enterprise users to run real business beyond the POC concept level in the chain. From the perspective of development trends, it is expected that the public chain of the IOT class will be the main player in the B-end field in the future.

From an enterprise user perspective, companies are willing to pay for the business they run on the public chain, while meeting their true business needs and at a reasonable cost. And the cost of these will be injected into the public chain ecology as “external value” (and no longer the internal idling of the previous pure speculative currency), specifically to burn off the secondary market repurchase of the gas on the public chain and the original token. The way is reflected. In contrast, C-end users are reluctant to pay directly, but are only willing to provide non-monetary resources such as attention. Therefore, the public chain focusing on the C-end needs to have additional means of converting revenue into revenue, so as to indirectly repress the value of the public chain, so it is not as efficient as the public chain of the B-end.

At the practical level, projects that carry out such operations usually have two forms of entities: “public chain” + “company”, so a potential problem lies in the distribution of benefits between the two. The value brought by enterprise users can be injected into the public chain itself to raise the price of the currency (for the benefit of the holder), or it can flow into the company to create the value of the equity (for the benefit of the shareholders); similarly, the commitment of the project cost can also be flexibly Switch between people. The project team is faced with conflicts of interest in the choice of this issue. At present, it is usually to inject the value choice into the public chain to raise the price of the currency, because the currency market as a capital market can leverage the income multiple times, while the unlisted equity value is not only magnified The multiple is not high and it is difficult to realize, not to mention the company itself may hold a certain amount of currency as its own assets. But for (long-term) investors, the double-investment of the stock is the current mainstream, after all, the investment equity also has unique advantages.

Of course, this problem is only a happy worry, most of the projects have not yet been divided into cake choices, but still in the early stages of making the cake first.


At present, if Dapp wants to seize the same market with the centralized app, it still can't see any hope. In the c-end industry where both exist, Dapp can't do better than the experience of centralized apps, let alone user habits. And 99.9% of the market industry has occupied the centralized application, and more changes in the future are likely to be horizontal/vertical integration problems between them.

Several potential breaking directions that are inferred from this:

(1) It is possible to find some market segments that only belong to Dapp, and centralized apps cannot penetrate.

However, the market size of these niche is likely to be too small, with long tail characteristics, and investing in a single Dapp is of little significance.

(2) In the whole business model of the project, only Dapp is a small part, and the main business and profit mode occur outside Dapp.

Such a project can only be judged by case by case, but one thing that can be determined is that Dapp only uses value but no investment value if it issues its own currency. Investors will focus on the traditional equity investment model binding team, so that the entire business can be included in the scope of investment targets.

(3) The industry has created a new product form that completely surpasses App/Dapp, so that it can reduce the impact of traditional centralized apps.

To be honest, I haven't figured out what kind of product form it would be like, just like when I was online, I could only use the browser and couldn't imagine the App. Internet services that were once demanded by netizens were basically solved in the browser. At the time, they did not feel that it was wrong.

The App is a new product form that has become popular with the rise of the mobile Internet, and its foundation is the popularity of mobile phones and high-speed communication networks. In the future, when the infrastructure changes dramatically, it is hard to say that the product of this form will not be replaced. Correspondingly, the smart contract on the blockchain will not be presented to the user in the form of Dapp, which is currently seen, but a more evolved form that is not yet known.

Needless to say, once the 5G network is launched, many business and product models should evolve substantially.

This time, I will first talk about the C-end of the blockchain industry, and keep the B-side next time.