In 2021, the world found another reason to go crazy — NFTs. In fact, the technology is not new, but it was last year that we witnessed the NFT fever, when the most expensive items were sold for $70, 50, and 30 million. Queries like “What are NFTs?”, “How to buy/sell/ mint NFTs?” have become the most popular. NFTs are changing not only the digital but also the real economy, and in the future, their scope of application will only expand. Today we offer you to consider the top 10 categories of NFTs that remain the most popular in 2022.
Collectibles have become the most trending and top-of-the-line direction of NFT in 2021. The purchase of such NFTs allowed users to join the privileged caste of society, become members of closed communities, and become on a par with famous personalities. For example, Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) is an NFT collection that made an incredible splash last year and remains in the lead in 2022. It is noteworthy that the first Bored Apes could be bought for 0.2 ETH. Since then, BAYC’s total OpenSea sales have exceeded $1 billion.
Furthermore, celebrities put NFT Apes on avatars on social networks, shoot them in clips, and attend events dedicated to them. Eminem, Lil Baby, and Post Malone are only a tiny part of those celebrities who bought BAYC NFTs for themselves. Such a maniacal desire to become part of a closed community and demonstrate social status will surely encourage users to buy PFP NFTs in 2022. Moreover, in pursuit of fame and success, it is expected that even more companies will release their NFTs collectibles.
Music NFTs allow a new wave of independent artists to exclude intermediaries in the music industry, such as streaming companies that take most of the revenue. Although music NFTs have not yet gained such fame, the trend is aimed at popularizing them. NFT technology helps align rights and provides musicians with more freedom, more income, and fewer risks. If such NFT categories as fashion, art, and photography are aimed at a less wide audience, then music is something that almost everyone loves. That is why music NFT is an essential direction for all years. Major labels such as Universal Music Group are experimenting with virtual NFT bands along with Bored Apes. And artists like Grimes and 3LAU have sold more than $1M worth of NFTs, opening up a whole new revenue flow. In addition, streaming platforms on the blockchain are being created, for example, Audius, which seeks to restore freedom to musicians and provide prospects for growth and monetization.
While some NFT creators are chasing money and popularity, artists enjoy new opportunities. Now the artists have the chance to convert their creations into NFT and sell them on various platforms while receiving substantial fees and enormous popularity. The most famous example of the complete transfer from a physical state to a virtual one is the destruction of a Banksy “Morons (White)” painting. It was tokenized by the Injective Protocol company. Now the painting is available only in the form of NFT. At the beginning of 2021, Christie’s auction house sold Beeple’s NFT-work “The First 5000 Days” for $69.3 million. This is the first fully digital work of art to be put up for traditional auction. In 2022, this trend is likely to continue with renewed vigor. Already now, galleries and museums are looking toward the NFT technology.
NFTs are becoming increasingly widespread in the field of ticket sales. The advantages of NFT tickets are their anti-fraudulent nature. That is problems such as buying fake tickets, speculative deals, and so on are excluded. Event organizers mint the required number of NFT tickets and distribute them via their websites or on open marketplaces. At the same time, they can encode everything they need in NFT — from the image of the ticket and its ID to the method of checking and selling this ticket (for example, at a fixed price or via an auction).
When users buy an NFT ticket, it will be stored in their wallets, which can be accessed from their mobile devices. Via wallets, users can manage their NFT tickets. For example, use it to demonstrate a ticket to get to an event. After the end of the event, such an NFT ticket may have some commemorative or collectible value.
The sphere is not new. Clothes, skins, and looks have long been available to buy in online games, but only now, with the help of NFTs, everyone can get a truly unique set of their own, which they can flaunt in the vastness of the Metaverse. Virtual clothing and footwear have been present on the NFT market for several years and are in great demand. Companies are selling their limited NFT collections with resounding success. Gucci, Adidas, Nike, Puma, and Louis Vuitton are only a tiny part of the brands that have already begun to develop their NFT projects. For example, Adidas Ozworld allows you to create your own unique avatar by choosing sneakers that reflect your personality. Nike is also not far behind. In cooperation with the RTFKT virtual asset startup, Nike released a collection of Nike Cryptokicks NFT sneakers.
Metaverses are another trend of 2021 that has smoothly moved into 2022 and continues to develop by leaps and bounds. Last year we witnessed jaw-dropping sums for purchasing land plots in such metaverses as Decentraland, Somnium Space, and others. Metaverses are a new stage in gaming development as they allow players to get a sense of presence in real-time and social interaction. This trend is actively supported by major brands and well-known personalities. Within the metaverses, you can attend parties, virtual festivals, concerts, fashion exhibitions, sporting events, galleries, etc. Blockchain ensures legitimacy and allows players to be the sole owners and faith-makers of their avatars, clothing, and land plots since all these items are embodied in NFTs. In 2022, this trend continues, and more metaverses are expected to launch, for example, Victoria VR, which promises to become a sensation this year.
One of the crucial areas of NFT growth is sports. The revolution in sports NFT was established by NBA Top Shot, which released NFT packs with video game moments. The idea had stunning success, the legendary LeBron James cards were sold for more than $200,000. Another such project, Sorare, was launched in France at the beginning of 2021 and now occupies second place in the sports NFT market.
Personal NFT tokens are issued by almost all famous European and American athletes. Usually, athletes’ NFT tokens are cards with the central moments in their careers (video, photo, gif, etc.). For example, Stephen Curry issued 2,974 NFTs with the shoes he wore to break the record for three-pointers in the NBA. The profits from the sale of Luke Shaw and Andrew Robertson NFTs went to charity, and the most expensive token from Leo Messi’s collection was sold for $1.1 million.
Digital Twins NFTs
NFT digital twin is a direction that has not received much attention in previous years. Nevertheless, this particular direction is one of the most useful and valuable. With the help of NFT technology, it is possible to tokenize not only art objects but also official documents, such as educational certificates, licenses, passports, certificates of ownership, and so on. The advantages of NFT digital twins are that they cannot be stolen, corrupted, or compromised because everything is stored in an open and transparent decentralized registry. Perhaps not in 2022, but in the future, the world will discover the full potential of NFT. Probably in the future, we will be able to get rid of a lot of paperwork and use NFTs, for example, to take out NFT-backed loans on a peer-to-peer lending platform.
NFT domains are another prominent direction in 2022 and beyond. The movement was born in 2019 when the Unstoppable Domains company began to sell .zil domains. To date, Unstoppable Domains is still one of the market leaders. NFT domains open up hitherto unseen opportunities such as security, data control, transparency, and censorship resistance. In addition, the main advantage of NFT domains is that by purchasing one, you are the sole and rightful owner and are not required to pay annual renewals and worry that someone will be able to take away your domain. As a result, NFT domains are becoming increasingly popular among artists, forum creators, and just companies that want to protect themselves, reduce costs, and not worry about censorship. Moreover, such domains are also helpful for ordinary crypto users. With their help, you can replace long crypto wallet addresses with a concise and easy-to-remember blockchain domain.
In 2021, photographers began to actively use NFT technology, discovered an incredibly rapid flow of profits, and acquired huge fan bases. NFT technology allows photographers not only to establish indisputable copyright but also to increase the income from their creativity because, with the help of NFT, you can set up the receiving of royalties and make a profit from each subsequent resale of the object. The most notable name in the NFT photography field was Justin Aversano. He released a collection of 100 “Twin Flames” photos on Valentine’s Day in 2021. Since then, the total sales of the collection amounted to about 5,200 ETH, which is more than $10 million. Moreover, even the developers of such a popular network as Instagram explore ways to introduce NFTs into the social network. Not surprisingly, with such success, it is expected that 2022 will become even more fertile for new names of talented NFT photographers.
In 2021, we witnessed how NFT technology jumped on a hype train and swept across the world. Digital art, music, photography, metaverses, and other categories listed in the article began to number millions of NFT items. What will become with NFTs in 2022 is not yet clear. It is doubtful that the haters were right, and the bubble will burst. This year, the technology will likely continue to develop, and new, hitherto unseen types of non-fungible tokens will appear.