BNB is the native cryptocurrency on Binance’s blockchain, BNB Chain, also known as BSC (Binance Smart Chain).
Theoretically BSC is a decentralized blockchain, but in practice it is controlled by a small group of validators over which Binance has enormous influence.
Therefore anyone can effectively upload smart contracts to BSC, despite the central role that Binance plays in this ecosystem.
Binance Smart Chain and BNB
BSC was born as a kind of evolution of Binance Chain, which in turn was launched by Binance in April 2019 and then renamed BNB Beacon Chain in 2022.
In fact, BSC, unlike Binance Chain, offers smart contract functionality and compatibility with the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), and operates in parallel with BNB Beacon Chain.
BSC was also eventually renamed, from Binance Smart Chain to BNB Smart Chain.
BNB therefore is both the native cryptocurrency of BNB Beacon Chain and the native cryptocurrency of BSC, i.e., it exists in two different formats between which there should be no confusion. However, the format on BSC is much more widely used, since it is also used for smart contracts.
One such smart contract is Push Protocol, which is a Web3 communication layer that aims to bring the Web2 user experience to Web3.
Previously the project was known as Ethereum Push Notification Service, with its token EPNS, but since it is expanding its reach to other blockchains besides Ethereum it has been renamed Push Protocol, with the token now called PUSH.
PUSH debuted in the crypto markets in April 2021 under the name EPNS, at the height of the bull run.
Its all-time high price of $8.7 was actually on 14 April 2021, while its current price is 96% lower.
It is worth mentioning that the debut price was overpriced anyway, perhaps thanks to the boom that occurred in those very first months of 2021 in DeFi.
In fact, during the second peak of 2021 crypto markets the price of PUSH barely managed to exceed $5, which was 42% lower than the first peak.
However, the collapse began as early as mid-September of that year, at least two months ahead of the rest of the crypto market. 2021 closed at about $2.1, and the collapse continued until June 2022 when it had fallen to $0.3.
The all-time low occurred at the beginning of January 2023 at $0.22, and since then the price of PUSH has rebounded by 45% returning to around $0.3.
In other words, it has been since mid-June last year that the price of PUSH has been lateralizing around $0.3, with the exception of the end of the year when the price tried to fall to $0.2 as a result of the FTX fiasco and the general collapse of the crypto markets.
The launch on the blockchain of Binance (BNB)
The news that could reverse this trend is the landing on BSC, which is Binance’s renamed BNB Smart Chain blockchain. After all, this is compatible with EVM, so it is not difficult to replicate Ethereum smart contracts, such as the Push Protocol smart contract, on BSC.
The launch on BSC should make its wallet-to-wallet messaging service and push notifications expand immediately to a wide range of new users, as BNB Smart Chain is one of the largest networks in the world with about 230 million unique addresses.
BNB Chain Growth Director Alvin Kan said:
“At BNB Chain, we are thrilled to see Push Protocol’s unwavering commitment to driving mass adoption of web3 technology. The expansion of their decentralized communications suite to BNB blockchain is a testament to their vision of bridging the gap between the traditional web and the decentralized world.
The launch of Push Protocol on BNB Chain will bring a whole new level of accessibility to its easy-to-use communication interface powered by decentralized notifications and messaging.”
BSC’s strategic goal does not seem to be to replace Ethereum, but to form a kind of cross-chain layer that can connect different blockchains with each other. Perhaps that is also why they are welcoming a project like Push Protocol.
In particular, Binance Smart Chain was conceived from the outset as complementary to its predecessor Binance Chain, thanks to a dual-chain architecture that allows users to transfer assets easily from one blockchain to another.
Thus the BEP-2 and BEP-8 format tokens of BNB Beacon Chain can be easily replaced with the new BEP-20 tokens of BNB Chain. In addition, the new BEP-20 format uses the same functions as Ethereum’s ERC-20 format.
To move tokens from one blockchain to another, for example to convert them from BEP-2 to BEP-20 or vice versa, it is possible to use the Binance Chain Wallet available on Chrome and Firefox.
Thus cross-chain compatibility between BSC and BNB Beacon Chain is complete, while that with Ethereum is only up to a point for now. Nonetheless, the road seems to be precisely that of increasing cross-chain compatibility between BSC and Ethereum as well.
DeFi on BSC
Since its launch, BSC has started hosting more and more smart contracts. The majority of these, and particularly the most widely used ones, are decentralized finance dApps (DeFi).
For example, one of the absolute most widely used DEX is PancakeSwap, which is a dApp on BSC.
It was launched in September 2020, kicking off what would become a DeFi boom in early 2021.
It is enough to mention that its TVL in May 2021 reached $7.8 billion, although it later dropped even as low as $2.2 billion at the end of 2022. Now it has slightly climbed back up to well above $2.3 billion.
Hence, it is no coincidence that many DeFi tokens made their all-time highs between April and May 2021, while instead the crypto market as a whole reached its all-time high in November of the same year.
Binance Coin (BNB)
This logic also affected the value of BNB, which is the native cryptocurrency first of Binance Chain and then also of Binance Smart Chain.
Indeed, it reached its peak precisely in May 2021, at $690, although in November of that year it touched $650.
It is worth noting that during the bear market of 2022 the price of BNB as a percentage fell less than that of the other two major cryptocurrencies, namely Bitcoin and Ethereum. To date, BTC and ETH lose 68% from all-time highs, while BNB is limited to -57%.
Moreover, BNB’s current price is still as much as 800% higher than its pre-bubble price in November 2020. In other words, the DeFi boom on BSC in early 2021 sent BNB’s market value soaring by nearly 2,000%, and these gains were only partially lost during the bear market of 2022.
However, BNB’s total market capitalization, $47 billion, is still hugely lower than that of ETH ($189 billion), and especially BTC ($427 billion).
It is as if BNB in 2021 had made in a few months a jump comparable to what ETH and BTC had made in previous years.