dApps are decentralized applications, which are distributed apps that do not use central servers in order to keep sensitive user data safe.
Traditional apps run on centralized servers, while dApps differ in that they operate through a decentralized, peer-to-peer network where no entity has full control.
Juniper analyst Lauren Foye said:
“DApps will pool resources across numerous machines globally. The results are applications which do not belong to a sole entity, [but] rather are community-driven.”
It is precisely for these reasons that dApps represent a real innovation in the field of applications and are currently classified into 3 types:
- Type 1 dApps: they have their own blockchain and they need the native asset to function; a classic example is Ethereum;
- Type 2 dApps: they rely on a type 1 dApp blockchain protocol for their functionality, but with a proprietary token;
- Type 3 dApps: they use the same protocol as Type 2 dApps.
The dApps on the Ethereum and TRON blockchains
DApps based on blockchains, usually on TRON or Ethereum, but also often on EOS, offer a substantial advantage which consists of self-sustainability over time, both financially and in terms of development.
The same people who use dApps are often involved in improving the decentralized application, which often rewards these users in tokens.
Tokens can be used on dApps or exchanged for cryptocurrencies.
These decentralized apps are open-source and the revenue goes to the devs involved in the project, but also to users and those who invest in the dApp by contributing to the improvement of the system.
In detail, the gain consists of:
- For developers, in reference to the work done in programming, in observing the growth and spread of the application to a greater number of users;
- For marketers, in relation to promotion and growing sales;
- For users who pay to use the service and then collaborate in maintaining the dApp itself.
App vs dApp
Comparison of WhatsApp and Status, messaging app and dApp, respectively.
The messages and media that we exchange through WhatsApp are encrypted and when registering with the application, it is necessary to enter the phone number that is recorded on a server.
All of this is stored on centralized servers that by their nature are subject to possible hacker attacks and censorship.
With the Status app, messages and multimedia exchanged are encrypted and saved on users’ mobile phones and on a non-accessible offline server. The dApp application code, being open-source, works thanks to smart contracts and Ethereum.
Both applications are free for users. WhatsApp finances itself through the Business part where companies are placed and advertised.
Status, on the other hand, requires payment for users who use additional internal functions that allow them to exchange cryptocurrencies, surf the Internet, do surveys, etc..
Currently, dApps can process about 15 transactions per second and are labelled as very slow, although those on EOS seem to be faster than those on Ethereum, for example.
For their use, in addition to the registration and the creation of a simple account, it is necessary to create a cryptocurrency wallet, so it is clear that they are more user-friendly for an audience that knows the sector. It will probably take a long time until they reach the so-called mass adoption.
Since they are linked to the blockchain, the only way to remove them is to close the network; which could also be considered an advantage in that they are more difficult to shut down and hack.
In addition, the creation of dApps follows its own programming languages that require specific training, which means that there’s a demand for specialized blockchain developers.