What is an ERC20 token?

ERC20 tokens in Exodus are called "Ethereum Assets" because they live on the Ethereum blockchain. Learn more about ERC20 tokens in detail below.

In this article:

What is an ERC20 token?

ERC20 is an official protocol for proposing improvements to the Ethereum (ETH) network and can be understood as a standard for tokens that are created on the Ethereum blockchain. For example, many ICO tokens are ERC20 tokens. ICOs, or initial coin offerings, are fundraising events where companies raise funds for projects by selling digital tokens.

A traditional finance analogy would be IPOs, or initial public offerings. IPOs are when companies get listed on public stock exchanges and sell stocks (shares) of their company to the public in order to raise funds.

The ERC20 token standard makes it easier to exchange one ERC20 token for another, integrate various ERC20 tokens into platforms like blockchain wallets and exchanges, and more.

ERC20 tokens use Ethereum’s network

The difference between ERC20 tokens and cryptocurrencies is that ERC20 tokens don’t have their own blockchain but run on the Ethereum network. ERC20 tokens are stored on Ethereum addresses, sent using Ethereum transactions, and use Ethereum to pay for transaction fees.

For more information on how ERC20 transaction fees work, see this article.

You also may have noticed that within your Exodus wallet your ERC20 tokens share the same receiving address as each other and Ethereum (ETH). Because ERC20 tokens use the Ethereum blockchain, your Ethereum wallet not only handles your ETH but also all ERC20 or Ethereum-powered assets you may have. Your Exodus wallet is smart enough to know what it is being sent so your asset always shows up in the correct wallet for you to see.

Please note: You cannot send Ethereum Classic (ETC) to your Ethereum address. If you accidentally send your ETC to your Ethereum address please follow this guide.

What happens if I send an unsupported ERC20 token to my ETH address in Exodus?

Your Exodus ETH Address is capable of receiving any ERC20 token whether or not Exodus supports it. However, unsupported tokens won’t be visible in Exodus. You can manage your Exodus-unsupported ERC20 tokens using your Ethereum private key.