As crypto evolves at breakneck speed, we see new trends arise day-to-day. One of them being the advent of non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, with its ultimate goal of bringing immutable, transparent, authenticated, and easily accessible goods across a virtual universe, while also retaining real-world value. In this WAX vs Ethereum NFTs article, we pit two of the world's most popular blockchains that power millions of NFTs, in a head-to-head battle to see which one comes out on top.
The gaming industry is reaching new heights, with over $100-billion worth of virtual items changing hands last year. This will no doubt grow exponentially in the next few years, as we see the rise of micro-transactions, subscriptions, and expansive realms to spend your hard-earned cash on.
NFTs are primed to make greater adoption in this space and across the entertainment industry as we begin to see the challenges of traditional digitized goods and marketplaces. So, read along our WAX vs Ethereum NFTs comparison to know more, whether you're a game developer, artist, musician, creator, or shopaholic.
WAX vs Ethereum NFTs Comparison Table
|Blockchain Network: EOS, modified||Blockchain Network: Ethereum|
|Cryptocurrency: WAXP||Cryptocurrency: ETH|
|Fees: Low to no fees.||Fees: High gas fees owing to price volatility|
|Transaction Speeds: Up to 5000 transactions-per-second||Transaction speeds: Up to 15 transactions-per-second|
|Mobile App: Yes||Mobile App: Yes|
|Token Price: $0.042||Token Price: $1.226|
Ultimately, the key difference that has been highlighted in our WAX vs Ethereum NFTs is the general diversity of each marketplace. NFTs had originally gained traction as a concept on Ethereum, giving its blockchain greater exposure, and maturity for more platforms and users.
Most of the well-known and popular NFT exchanges and dAPPs were originally built and powered by Ethereum. However, WAX has since grown exponentially in user count and has rapidly caught up with and surpassed Ethereum in its value, functionality, and the huge collection of NFTs that it now has owing to its partnerships with individual creators, A-list celebrities, and major brands.
What Are WAX NFTs?
WAX stands for Worldwide Asset eXchange and has been proclaimed the “King of NFTs” given all of the major brands and influencers that have been flocking to their platform from Ethereum. Their blockchain is quickly becoming one of the largest and most popular non-Ethereum exchanges for NFTs.
The WAX blockchain allows users to build entire decentralized apps (dAPPs) that facilitate the transaction of NFT goods and power marketplaces that offer a place to buy, sell, or exchange NFTs. Aspiring creators could also easily mint or tokenize their own creations to become NFTs, be it a piece of artwork, music, trading cards, or video games centered around NFTs.
WAX has seen a massive explosion of trading volume recently, with entire collections of hundreds and thousands of NFTs sold out within minutes. The platform was created initially by the same team behind the infamous OPSkins exchange, with over 20 years worth of e-commerce experience.
Initially, WAX was mostly used for gaming-based NFTs, such as in-game items and collectibles, but has since evolved into other forms of NFTs, such as merchandise and memorabilia. Originally built on Ethereum, WAX has since moved to a modified version of the EOS chain, powered by its native WAXP cryptocurrency tokens.
The Benefits of WAX NFTs
This is the main interface for users to review the NFT collections in their inventory. WAX's first-party wallet also allows users to easily access the application to enter and browse through the many dApps running on WAX, whether they are games or marketplaces.
This ensures a seamless shopping experience across different stores within a single application. Topshot, formerly known as one of the top dApps in the world, no longer holds that title. Positions #1 and #2 are both currently held by WAX.
One of the best features is easy onboarding, especially for non-tech savvy users, with ‘two-click' registration and multiple sign-in options. It also does away with complex third-party wallet set-ups, having to memorize seed-phrases, or needing to securely store private keys.
WAX's Rise in Popularity
WAX is the most used blockchain in the world with more than 425k daily users. It also has the most daily transactions in the world with more than 9 million daily transactions. These daily active wallet numbers are ahead of Tron, EOS, Ethereum, and Flow.
As you can see in the following chart from dApp Radar, on March 28, 2021, WAX had 45.1k active wallets, vs. 34.06k for Tron, 33.99k for EOS, 26.42k for Ethereum, and 24.3k for Flow. In fact, WAX just hit a new milestone: 2 million wallets have been created on the WAX Blockchain!
The WAX Economy
Simply put, WAX is designed for the people, by the people. While the financially blessed are able to consume and shop for NFTs on the Ethereum Blockchain, WAX is proud to sell 1 million NFTs for the low price of $1, rather than 1 NFT for an exorbitant price.
This is a new, hybrid, inter-blockchain model that upgrades the existing WAX blockchain to have interoperable ‘bridges' with Ethereum. This combines the versatile NFT marketplace functionality of WAX and the DeFi-like monetary abilities of Ethereum, meaning that WAX can focus on what it does best (dominating the NFT world).
Ultimately, this means that WAX will inject tangible value into the Ethereum DeFi ecosystem based on the value they derive from being the blockchain with the most utility for all things NFT related. Meanwhile, WAX will be tapping into Ethereum's ecosystem for its core DeFi offerings like liquidity and governance.
Fees collected by the WAX network can be redistributed back to the community and allow holders of the liquidity pools on WAX to stake them for added benefits. Another benefit is that users on Ethereum could trade the vast array of Ethereum-built NFTs on WAX, but without paying gas fees, which are subject to Ethereum's price volatility and network congestion.
WAX has been very proactive in encouraging developers to build dAPPs on its blockchain. One of its best features is backward compatibility with EOS, as WAX itself is an EOS-modified chain. This means that developers who have built dAPPs on EOS could easily migrate or duplicate them on WAX.
WAX has grown a strong connection with major players in the tech and entertainment industry despite its nascent stage. Membership of the WAX Advisory Council – which supports and provides input in the development of WAX – includes executives from Microsoft, Google, Magic Leap, Atari, Marvel, Exploding Kittens, Unity, Topps, and more. WAX has also partnered with major celebrities such as William Shatner and deadmau5 to create special NFTs.
WAX: A Green Blockchain
WAX takes the health of our planet very seriously and is doing everything possible to negate its carbon footprint to best preserve our habitat and home. Removing the need for outrageous gas fees was only the beginning.
WAX proudly operates on a proof of state system (PoS) that invites community members to be a bigger part of the blockchain. Users have the ability to stake WAX tokens, which in turn keeps the servers running smoothly. This process rewards members for their stakes and allows them to vote on community proposals.
On top of this, WAX has also created the world’s very first carbon impact NFTs in the form of vIRLs. These NFTs are redeemable for a physical product (a tree sapling) and a physical service (planting the tree sapling). Every $1 spent on these NFTs equates to 1 tree sapling being planted by the National Forest Foundation. Each tree will sequester approximately 1 whole ton of CO2 over its lifetime.
Click here to see a stunning visual on how WAX going green is beneficial for the blockchain, NFT collectors, and the planet.
Popular NFT Collections on WAX
WAX welcomes projects from all corners of the blockchain; be it musical NFTs, unique pieces of art, or sports cards, there is no shortage of collectibles to be purchased, sold, or traded. WAX proudly hosts two of the largest-scale companies in the collectibles space – Topps and Funko.
These companies represent billions of dollars in revenue and market cap and now choose WAX as the platform of choice to host their big-name-brand collections. Here is an in-depth review of successful projects being represented by WAX:
• William Shatner – Personal memorabilia from over 60 years in Hollywood, including his Star Trek years, have been tokenized as NFTs on WAX. It had 10,000 packs filled with 125,000 photographs from pivotal and memorable moments in his life, sold out in just 9 minutes.
• Topps – One of the most well-known makers of trading cards in the world sold out their first batch of NFTs from the Garbage Pail Kids series on WAX in just 28 hours. The next sale of the GPK Goes Exotic collection sold out in just 67 minutes, distributing 20,000 packs containing 240,000 individualized trading cards for a total value of $204,800. Opening up all kinds of new possibilities, Topps MLB Series 1 collectibles recently came to the WAX Blockchain and sold out all 74,090 packs in a flash.
• Deadmau5 – They released their new RAREZ brand of merchandise on WAX, selling over $100,000 worth of rare collectibles spread over 6,000 unique NFT packs.
• Atari – The legendary video-game maker launched a collaboration to sell colorful, animated, and nostalgic digital artwork of their box cover arts from the golden age of classic games over 40 years ago.
• Street Fighter – WAX collaborated with Capcom to launch exclusive trading cards featuring characters from the iconic Street Fighter universe. The trading cards also introduced a unique crafting mechanic that allows you to combine cards to create a more powerful card.
• Bitcoin Origins – A collection of rare artwork created by a collaboration of artists worldwide to celebrate Bitcoin through its history and achievements. Collectors could also enter to find clues for a treasure hunt rewarding 1 Bitcoin.
• Uplift Art – They are a humanitarian-based initiative that has collaborated with creators for collectible entertainment cards, such as artwork and songs. They have recently raised money to help build a school in Haiti after selling $20,000 worth of NFTs on WAX.
• KOGs – A 90s-style POGs-type game, you can use WAX-minted NFT tokens as a playable item to battle other players in online tournaments. Collectors can unlock special features and functions within those games or simply collect those tokens for their rarity.
• Blockchain Heroes – A collectible trading card pack featuring over 100 characters across several releases, including fully-animated avatars, collectible artifacts, and more to celebrate blockchain, made exclusively on WAX.
• Weezer – Just this last month, Weezer and RAREZ released NFTs on WAX to celebrate the launch of their most recent album OK Human.
With over 300,000 average daily transactions across an active user-based of 320,000 people worldwide, WAX has seen over 100-million NFT items sold on their blockchain. Of those total transactions, 50-million were built natively on WAX.
Despite not having been around in the crypto space for as long as Ethereum they have dominated their competitor in terms of innovation when it comes to NFTs (particularly in regards to scalability and latency). One of the key things we want to highlight in this WAX vs Ethereum NFTs article is that brands and artists are flocking to WAX in droves from Etherum, which is not that surprising given the infrastructure they are building out.
Across the entertainment world, we've seen major figures from the gaming, arts, and film industry create unique NFT collections for WAX. This continued growth is helped with a scalable and efficient blockchain, ensuring that NFTs could be traded en masse with low to no fees and quick transaction times.
It's further helped with WAX's easy onboarding features for new users and powerful wallet application to explore its vast network. It may not have the monetary scale of Ethereum and its DeFi experience, but WAX's new tokenomic model allows users to better monetize their WAXP tokens for better rewards.
Pros & Cons
What Are Ethereum NFTs?
Ethereum is commonly recognized as a blockchain that can do it all from powering a decentralized game to entire financial services managing tens and billions of dollars. Although more popularly known for the latter, in building the foundations to new monetary networking for the basis of decentralized finance (DeFi), it's quickly expanding to more consumer spaces.
Tokenised NFT goods initially gained traction – and equal measures of notoriety – on Ethereum, and it has since become the global leader among NFT blockchains.
In the last month of 2020 alone, over $8.2-million worth of NFTs were sold, spread across the creation of 630,000 distinct wallets. Most of this happened over on Ethereum, exchanging weapons and armor in video games, colorful clothing on virtual worlds, unique artwork, baseball cards, collectibles, and more. Many of the major NFT marketplaces are powered by Ethereum and its platform for creators has also grown with it (as a young 17-year old artist can attest to after having sold a piece of art for $21,350).
Features of Ethereum NFTs
Wide-Range of Supported Tokens
Ethereum offers a wide variety of different tokenization standards to better allow platform developers and NFT creators to optimize their goods accordingly. The most common token used on Ethereum are ERC-20 cryptocurrencies, and they are equally used as utility and governance tokens. However, the primary standards for NFT tokenisation happens on ERC-721 and ERC-1155 tokens.
ERC-1155 is a newer standard and offers numerous improvements over ERC-721 for the basis of minting NFTs. ERC-1155 supports non-fungible, fungible, and also semi-fungible goods, thus allowing different states of use to create assets.
ERC-1155 is also more efficient with using only a single smart-contract for multiple NFTs, supporting multiple localisations of languages within an NFT, and transferring many NFTs within a single block (up to 150-200 tokens-per-second).
Extensive Monetary Capabilities
This is already evident with WAX hybridizing their chain with Ethereum, as the latter offers far superior methods for managing complex financial transactions and entire economies, thanks to its structure. This is also proven given how much of the DeFi ecosystem is powered by Ethereum. It's also a benefit to carrying the ETH cryptocurrency, given its wide usability.
For users focused on NFTs, one could further monetize their participation in a given network with the ability to earn greater rewards, such as staking into different liquidity pools and interchanging between the vast array of Ethereum-powered tokens. However, there are also the issues of scalability on Ethereum, such as slow transaction speeds and high gas fees. The ETH 2.0 could potentially solve this obstacle (assuming it ever actually rolls out and works).
Ethereum's larger exposure in the NFT space has meant that users will have more options on where and how they could spend money on NFTs. Its expansive network spans through blockchain-powered games and the many aspiring artists selling their artwork on NFT exchanges that are run on Ethereum.
Perhaps Ethereum maxis might argue that there is more liquidity on Ethereum than WAX, owing to this larger user-base and concentration of crypto whales. But in our experience that's only partially true, as the massive transaction fees on Ethereum practically “price out” 95% of the other userbase, which WAX is able to cater to effectively.
There is also the benefit of having more dAPPs being powered by Ethereum, and also with the interchangeable functionality of being able to swap NFTs between different games or facilitate microtransactions. This wider ecosystem means that you're likely to find more on Ethereum than WAX.
Popular NFT Collections on Ethereum
• CryptoKitties – A game revolving around buying, selling, and exchanging digitized cats. Launched in 2017, it quickly became viral. Within two weeks, it gained over 150,000 users and $15-million in transactions; with a single CryptoKitty having been sold upwards of $170,000. It caused so much network congestion that it nearly crashed the entire Ethereum blockchain.
• The Complete MF Collection – The Sci-Fi inspired artwork collection sold on the Gemini-owned Nifty Gateway. The one-of-one collection includes 20 different art pieces made by an artist named Beeple. A bidding war started around $200,000 before finally closing at a winning bid of $777,777.77.
• F1 Delta Time – The game where you can own, manage, and drive yours for your own Formula 1 team in an Ethereum-built arcade racer. Gamers can collect cars, parts, garages, and entire race tracks using the native REVV tokens. In 2019, the collectible and rare ‘1-1-1' F1 car became the most expensive NFT ever owned, selling for $111,000. Later, someone paid $223,000 for a virtual version of the famous Monaco Circuit.
• The Best I Could Do – 16 NFT artwork collections were sold on Nifty Gateway, made with various scarcity by Rick & Morty creator Justin Roiland. One collection had a minimum bid of $14,999 and was sold at a final winning bid of $290,100. It raised a total of $1.65-million, with some of the proceeds going to charity to help the homeless in Los Angeles after the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic.
• Pak – They became the first artist to have earned more than $1-million from selling Ethereum-based NFTs. 269 unique artworks were sold on several exchanges, including SuperRare, Nifty Gateway, Makersplace, and Async Art. At the time of writing, Pak has sold over $4.5-million worth of NFT art and the Top-10 artists have all garnered 7-digit earnings.
• Batman, Dark Knight – Several Batman-themed artworks were created by an artist for DC comics, José Delbo, in collaboration with noted cryptocurrency NFT artist Trevor Jones. It sold for a combined 540.86-ETH, or around $200,000 at the time.
• CryptoPunks – One of the largest NFT dAPPs by volume, CryptoPunks sells 10,000 unique, algorithmically-created, 24×24 pixel-art characters. No two of its avatars are ever alike and were quickly sold out. The average sale price for one pixelated character as of the last 12 months was around 4.8-ETH, or around $6,000, with a total trading volume of over $25-million.
As we've studied throughout our WAX vs Ethereum NFTs comparison, we can see that Ethereum has far more usability cases for its blockchain than just powering decentralized finance (DeFi) platforms and decentralized applications (dAPPs). Ethereum has by far the largest user base and concentration of creators for NFT goods, spanning video games to creative artwork. They have equally strong support from high-profile figures within the creative space and far more reach than WAX.
It also benefits from the versatility of its many networks, as the Ethereum-powered Enjin became the first gaming-centric cryptocurrency approved for use by regulators in Japan. This growing mass adoption by the mainstream, however, has exposed the key flaws around Ethereum, such as long transaction times and high gas fees. Some of the major supporters of NFTs on Ethereum are already working on their own blockchains or are migrating to other ones. This should be resolved when the ETH 2.0 network updates roll out completely, but as of now, there's a great argument to be made for WAX.
Pros & Cons
WAX vs Ethereum NFTs: Conclusion
So, as we conclude our WAX vs. Ethereum NFTs comparison article, we come back to the original question asked in our introduction – which one is best? It's certainly not an easy comparison to make, as while there are many similarities between them, they also have quite the divergence in some aspects, for better or worse.
In general, we can see that Ethereum has a much larger user-count. So, whether you're a creator or consumer, you will likely find more of what you're looking for – a powerful item for a game, some merchandise from your favorite band, a piece of a song, or a new wallpaper – on Ethereum.
However, its blockchain is plagued by issues such as slow transactions and high fees, which could be a deterrent to the overall user experience. What is the point of buying a $10 piece of artwork when you then have to pay another $10 or more in fees?
WAX solves all this by powering marketplaces on its powerful, scalable, and cost-effective blockchain. Although WAX hasn't grown to Ethereum's size yet, it has strong momentum to get there quickly. In the end, our WAX vs. Ethereum NFTs comparison has crowned WAX as the winner, seeing how in its brief existence, it has catapulted far beyond Ethereum in its ease of use, accessibility, and the vibrance of its NFT ecosystem. We can certainly expect a lot more to come from WAX in the near future.