In the dynamic realm of digital currencies, tokenisation has emerged as a game-changing development, facilitating the creation and transfer of digital assets across diverse blockchain networks. Whilst Ethereum’s ERC-20 token standard has held the dominant position for several years, a new entrant, the BRC-20 token, has made its debut on the Bitcoin network, providing novel features and opportunities for digital asset deployment. Amid market volatility and the rise of meme coins, wallet providers have begun to acknowledge the promise of BRC-20 tokens, integrating support for them.
BitKeep and OKX Blaze the Trail for BRC-20 Integration
Signalling the rising interest in Bitcoin network tokenisation, wallet providers are beginning to incorporate support for BRC-20 tokens. BitKeep, a widely used self-custody wallet provider, recently announced its BRC-20 token integration. This addition empowers users to handle and transfer these tokens, alongside non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Although in-wallet swaps for BRC-20 tokens remain in the pipeline, this move signifies an essential stride towards broadening Bitcoin’s utility.
OKX, a cryptocurrency exchange, has also thrown its hat into the ring, announcing support for BRC-20 assets through its OKX Wallet app. The incorporation of BRC-20 support by several centralised and decentralised exchanges reflects the increasing recognition and acceptance of this new token standard.
BRC-20 Tokens Weather Market Drawdown and Meme Coin Dominance
Despite the promising progress in BRC-20 token adoption, the token market has faced a significant drawdown. The market cap for these tokens currently sits at roughly ZAR 2.82 billion, an 85% dip from its peak during the meme coin craze in May. Initially, investor interest in minting BRC-20 NFTs powered this market, but meme coins such as WZRD, PIZA, and PEPE now make up most of the market cap.
While BRC-20 tokens were introduced as a new standard with unique features, via Ordinals and Inscriptions on the Bitcoin blockchain, they offer less functionality than the ERC-20 token standard. BRC-20 tokens can perform three core functions: view, rank, and transfer. Notwithstanding the criticisms and concerns from its creator, a Twitter user named Domo, an impressive 34,652 types of BRC-20 tokens have already been deployed. This number, however, is modest when compared to the array of ERC-20 tokens on Ethereum, which could number up to 400 million.
Mapping the Future for BRC-20 Tokens and Bitcoin Tokenisation
While notable wallet providers such as Trust Wallet and MetaMask have yet to support BRC-20 tokens, the recent integration by BitKeep and OKX indicates a future where Bitcoin’s tokenisation potential could be further leveraged. As the crypto sphere continues to evolve, it’s crucial to keep tabs on how BRC-20 tokens and their unique features will be employed and accepted by the broader community.
The proposed introduction of in-wallet swaps for BRC-20 tokens, as suggested by BitKeep, could enhance liquidity and usability. Also, the creation of tools and infrastructure that support BRC-20 token functionalities, such as decentralised exchanges and smart contracts, could unlock additional prospects for tokenisation on the Bitcoin network.
Despite the impact of market volatility and meme coin dominance on the perception and value of BRC-20 tokens, the potential for asset creation and transfer on the Bitcoin blockchain remains undiminished. As the cryptocurrency ecosystem matures, the future of BRC-20 tokens and their role within the broader tokenisation landscape will be a compelling area to observe.