NEO has become the latest blockchain to gain support for non-fungible tokens, otherwise known as NFTs or cryptocollectibles. These tokens resemble digital trading cards: they can be transferred between individuals just like cryptocurrency, but each NFT token is an entirely unique item.
Three New Tools
On Sunday, a number of NFT tools were released by O3 Labs, a group that produces a popular NEO wallet and other NEO-related software. (The NEO standards that actually support NFT tokens have existed for longer: they were originally created by a developer from Hashpuppies, a NEO-based game in the vein of CryptoKitties.)
Three different NFT-related tools are now available. In addition to offering a developer platform, O3 Labs has created a token explorer that can be used to view existing NFT tokens. Another exciting tool is the O3 Foundry, which can be used to create NFTs based on Internet memes.
You can already browse and explore two types of NFTs. The first category consists of tokens from Hashpuppies, and the second category is made up of tokens from the O3 Foundry. As developers deploy more NFT contracts and create more games, there will be more types of tokens to see.
The Potential of NFTs
NFT tokens are rapidly gaining ground: Ethereum popularized NFTs in 2017 with the advent of CrypoKitties. This game also introduced the ERC-721 standard, which allowed developers to create other NFT tokens. Since then, blockchains like EOS and TRON have introduced their own NFT standards and games.
Although NFT tokens are primarily used in basic online games at the moment, they have great potential. Most promisingly, NFTs could be used to handle item trading in mainstream video games. This is considered a multi-billion dollar market, and projects like Scatter, WAX, and Ripple have expressed interest in it.
Any blockchain that successfully monetizes tradable items would make a major breakthrough in terms of adoption and revenue. O3 doesn’t explicitly say that it is interested in the video game market, but it does hint that it will “expand the consumer use cases” of its tools—so it certainly has a business plan in mind.