What are dApps and Web3 apps?
Never enter your 12-word secret recovery phrase or private keys into a Web3 app. If a Web3 app requests your 12-word phrase or private keys, it is trying to steal your crypto.
In this article:
- What are dApps and Web3 apps?
- Where can I find Web3 apps on different networks?
- What are the benefits of dApps and Web3 apps?
- What is DeFi?
- How do I connect to dApps and Web3 apps with Exodus Web3 Wallet?
- Safety and security for DeFi and dApps
What are dApps and Web3 apps?
Web3 is the World Wide Web of the crypto-sphere, and a Web3 app is any application built on a blockchain. You can connect to a Web3 app with a crypto wallet. There are many different kinds of Web3 apps, from games to DeFi to NFT platforms.
A dApp is a specific type of Web3 app and is an abbreviation for decentralized application.
All dApps are Web3 apps, but not all Web3 apps are dApps, because not all Web3 apps are decentralized. However, you’ll often find the terms used interchangeably. You can connect to all dApps and Web3 apps with a crypto wallet.
For a Web3 app to be considered a dApp, the power to make changes to the application must be distributed amongst several parties or users. Many dApps employ DAOs in order to govern the application through decentralized means.
Exodus is a non-custodial software wallet that provides the interface for you to connect to the world of DeFi and Web3. Web3 apps are platforms that are external to Exodus, so you connect to them at your own risk. For more information, you can read our guide: Safety and security for DeFi and Web3.
Where can I find Web3 apps on different networks?
You can find information on Web3 apps on specific networks here:
- Ethereum: Explore the Ethereum ecosystem
- Solana: Explore the Solana ecosystem
- BNB Smart Chain: Explore the BNB Smart Chain ecosystem
- Polygon: Explore the Polygon ecosystem
- Algorand: Explore the Algorand ecosystem
- Avalanche: Explore the Avalanche ecosystem
What are the benefits of Web3 apps?
Web3 apps have a number of benefits over traditional apps.
Ownership of personal data
When you use an app like Instagram or Google, your personal data can be collected, owned, and monetized by these companies. Often, your personal data is used for ads targeted to your interests or sold to third parties for research or advertising purposes.
Web3 apps allow you to control your personal data. When you use a Web3 app, all it needs is a connection to your crypto wallet. So your personal data isn't collected or stored by the Web3 app because it never has access to it.
With some Web3 apps, you can store your own data in your crypto wallet and monetize it. If you choose to do so, you are directly compensated for providing your data.
Along with personal data ownership, privacy is another key feature built into Web3 apps. With Web3, your crypto wallet is used as your identity, and it isn't easily traced to your real identity. While the blockchain and your activity on it is publicly viewable, your personal information remains hidden.
Note that there are services that work to trace wallets involved in criminal activity. But for daily activities, your identity should remain private.
No single point of failure
Web3 apps are deployed on decentralized blockchains. A traditional app, for instance, operates on a single, central server. If that server goes down, then you won't be able to access that app.
When popular centralized apps like Facebook, Instagram, Whatsapp, Gmail, and Google Drive go down for long periods of time, not only do users lose access to social networking, email, and storage services, but so do businesses who rely on these platforms. This impacts business operations and profitability.
Web3 apps, on the other hand, use several nodes (computers and servers) to operate their networks. If a single node goes down, the remaining nodes keep the blockchain, and therefore the Web3 app, running and available to use.
Web3 apps can’t go down as easily unless all nodes (servers or computers) in a network go offline at once (which is a highly unlikely scenario). This setup also protects blockchains from denial of service (DoS) attacks from hackers.
Traditional apps like Facebook and Twitter have become popular to the point where billions of people post content to these platforms daily.
Since the companies behind these applications control these platforms, they have the power to allow and disallow certain users and types of content. In other words, the companies controlling the apps control a large part of online public discourse and can ban people with certain viewpoints.
This can infringe on democracy and open public discourse. Web3 apps provide an alternative to potential censorship on traditional apps since users can post what they want without fear of being censored. This is because Web3 apps store their information on the blockchain which is viewable by the public and difficult to alter once the information has been added.
There are many Web3 apps, such as Dtube, Steemit, Minds, etc. that focus on running open and censorship-free platforms.
Wider distribution of value
While many traditional apps have added benefits to our lives, the value created by them has largely gone to the app’s founders and investors, rather than to the users. This doesn't take into account that the users are the ones who generate activity and value. For example, Facebook does not create content. Facebook users create and share content that draws the interest and attention of other users.
Web3 apps, on the other hand, can level the playing field and reward all parties involved. By giving users the power to reward content they enjoy, creators are able to produce content that is suitable for their audiences, and not have to worry about being advertiser-friendly. For example, on Steemit, users are paid from a daily rewards pool for valuable contributions, upvoting popular content early, and other interactions with the platform.