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16z: 2023 State of Crypto (and Index)

16zcrypto | Daren Matsuoka, Eddy Lazzarin, Robert Hackett, Stephanie Zinn | Apr 11, 2023

A16crypto State of Crypto Index - 16z:  2023 State of Crypto (and Index)

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Overall, the 2023 report reflects a healthier industry than market prices may indicate, and a steady cycle of development, product launches, and ongoing innovation.

  • a16crypto created the State of Crypto Index, a regularly updated and interactive index to track the industry’s growth.
  • Blockchains are seeing growth in active users and engagement, with active addresses reaching an all-time high of 15 million last month. The number of active addresses has doubled in the past two years, driven by a diverse range of apps and services, including on-chain games. DeFi and NFT activity are also on the rise, with an increasing number of people purchasing NFTs in recent months. In addition, decentralized exchanges saw trading volumes exceeding $100 billion last month, marking the third consecutive month of positive growth.
  • The number of active developers in the crypto industry has steadily increased over the last three years, with almost 30,000 developers contributing to or building on crypto projects last month. This trend is likely due to the influx of developers during the 2020 bull run, who are now sticking around.

See:  Kaiko CEO Predicts Hong Kong as the Next Crypto Hub Due to US Crackdown

  • Blockchains are scaling through innovative new approaches and technologies, with a proliferation of protocols and projects working to facilitate more transactions. "Layer 2" (L2) scaling solutions, for instance, accounted for 1.5% of the total fees paid on Ethereum last year, and now account for 7%.
  • Breakthroughs in previously impractical technologies are becoming a reality, such as "zero knowledge" systems, which will unlock new blockchain scalability and privacy-protecting applications, as well as AI applications. Research, developer activity, and usage in this area are all showing positive trends.
  • The U.S. is losing its lead in web.  The proportion of crypto developers based in the U.S. has fallen by 26% compared to the rest of the world between 2018 and 2022. Thoughtful regulation could encourage crypto builders to innovate and grow these technologies safely in the U.S.
  • Zooming out shows steady progress across key indicators, including market cap, developer activity, and funding activity over the last decade. Short-term volatility obscures the more predictable price-innovation cycle, where price swings propel new ideas forward.

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