Despite the crash the crypto market experienced back in mid-May 2021, cryptocurrencies are becoming more and more popular, bringing in more institutional and retail investors. One such cryptocurrency that has been getting some attention is NEAR protocol, a decentralized application platform designed to make apps usable on the web. NEAR is the native utility token for the ecosystem.
This Near Protocol price prediction article will take a look at the price forecast of NEAR, where it is going, and whether or not you should consider adding it to your portfolio.
NEAR Historical Price Analysis
The price of the NEAR token first began to be recorded by CoinMarketCap back on October 14, 2020. It started with a price of $1.35. The price more or less remained around that range until January of 2021, when it began to experience a price increase.
The price reached $2.65 on January 24 before it took a bit of a dump, but then quickly discovered new all-time highs in early February 2021. By February 11, it began to go parabolic, reaching $5.32 on February 12 before crashing down. On March 6, it again began to go parabolic, reaching its current all-time high of $7.48 on March 13, 2021.
Predictably, the price crashed soon after and spent the rest of April before recovering lost ground until April 11, when it again experienced another crash. It wasn’t until May 11 when the price began to go up again, reaching around $6.93, until the entire crypto market completely crashed.
NEAR experienced a 60% loss of value during May. It hovered around $3.00 until it began experienced an almost 50% loss.
By the time of writing this article, the price of NEAR is at $1.94, according to CoinMarketCap.
Current Price, Market Cap, & Supply Details
NEAR has a total supply of 1 billion. 412,486,260.00 tokens are currently in circulation. 5% of the total supply is issued each year to support the network as epoch rewards, of which 90% goes to validators (4.5% total) and 10% to the protocol treasury (0.5% total). 30% of transaction fees are paid out as rebates to contracts that interact with a transaction, while the remaining 70% are burned.
At the time of writing this article, the NEAR token is at a -7.50% loss in the last 24 hours, -13.70% loss in the last 7 days.
It has a current market cap of $796 million with a $22 million 24 hour trading volume.
NEAR Future Price Forecast Predictions
Short Term Forecast
Long Term Forecast
NEAR Protocol Price Prediction 2021
As the chart suggests, it is expected that the price of NEAR is to increase throughout the second half of 2021. By the end of December, NEAR should be worth $3.54.
It should be noted that with the current Bear market trend permeating throughout, the chances of the price reaching that level decreases by the day. Although there is still time for the price to make a dramatic comeback, investors should remain realistic before investing.
NEAR Protocol Price Prediction 2022
2022 is expected to be a rather boring year for the price of NEAR. While months like April, July, October, and November do seem to provide positive growth, the price for the rest of the months seems to slump back to around the $3.50 mark. However, with the current price, this is still a 73.82% average growth.
NEAR Protocol Price Prediction 2025
By the time we get to 2025, prices would have doubled from 2022. In this year, we can expect the price of NEAR to be an average of $6.68. That is 6x the increase from today’s price. Even if you were to invest in either 2023 or 2024, based on the chart, you would still be in profit.
Is NEAR a Good Investment?
When looking at the charts, it does seem, even with the current bear market trend, investing in NEAR does seem to be a wise choice. When you also ‘look under the hood’ to see what this project is all about, including its team, things are even more encouraging.
And this is not including the amount of institutional adoption and investment that have been entering the crypto market since at least this year. Although most eyes are centering on Ethereum, it is only a matter of time before institutions and investors, in general, begin to look at other blockchain platforms to further expand the crypto space and to make a fortune.
How to Buy NEAR?
Unlike other cryptocurrencies, there are only a limited number of exchanges that list the NEAR token to be bought and traded. The main ones are Binance, Huobi Global, Gate.io, Bitfinex, OKEx, Crypto.com Exchange, and CoinEx.
More Information About NEAR
What is NEAR?
In a nutshell, Near is an open-source, programmable blockchain (smart contracts) and distributed computing platform based on the Proof of Stake (PoS) algorithm that enables developers and practically anybody to build and deploy decentralized applications (dApps) easily.
The NEAR Protocol is a sharded, Proof-of-Stake (PoS) blockchain that operates in a similar design to the forthcoming Ethereum 2.0 and the existing Cosmos network.
NEAR is the newest blockchain project for running decentralized applications (Dapps) that claims to be secure enough and capable of powering the mass adoption of blockchain applications built for cryptocurrencies, identity systems, games, and practically anything developers can think of building on the network.
According to the project’s website, even a non-blockchain developer should be able to build, deploy and manage dApps on the network, onboard, and provide users with a smooth and seamless experience –whether they’re familiar with crypto or not. The NEAR project is built using a novel consensus mechanism called “Nightshade” and uses sharding technology to scale infinitely (at least in theory) – and thus make mass use of wildly successful dApps possible.
As a public blockchain network, NEAR Protocol maintains an open-source codebase that any interested developers can contribute to. Thus anyone can easily and quickly access, read, or write to the blockchain to get whatever result they want.
How Does NEAR Work?
The NEAR Protocol uses a technique called “sharding” that splits the network into multiple pieces – shards – to enable parallel processing of transactions. Meaning there isn’t a theoretical limit on the network’s capacity. By processing in parallel, transactions are batched and executed on different shards simultaneously. Each shard is technically a separate blockchain that maintains its own resources and set of validators but can interact with and communicate with the main chain and other shards.
To put it simply, the way the NEAR Protocol works can be broken down into three categories:
- Scalability with Sharding
- Validators Network
- Token Economics
Sharding & Scalability
First-generation blockchains such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and the rest are extremely slow compared to traditional payment systems mainly because every single transaction is processed by all the validating nodes or miners on the network. This is highly inefficient and wasteful in practice, and soon enough, as the number of transactions and activities on the blockchain increases, the network begins to get clogged, and transaction processing ultimately grinds to a halt.
This had already happened to Ethereum in 2017, when one of its dApps –Cryptokitties – became so popular that it clogged the network, slowing all transaction processing almost to a halt. To get a glimpse at how serious this clogging was, the App only had 14,000 users.
NEAR uses a type of sharding design called “Nightshade” to scale its performance. Sharding allows the work of validating or processing transactions to be broken up amongst many ‘shards,’ each of which is validated by different nodes.
Accordingly, the work of validating transactions can be scaled with the number of shards, thus making it easier for the network to handle large transaction throughput.
Sharding technology is regarded to be a difficult engineering problem that has rarely been successfully implemented. However, the NEAR team has previously built one of the only sharding-based systems in production, which is being used at scale today by Uber, Goldman Sachs, and Comcast.
Consensus & Validation
As stated previously, the NEAR protocol uses the Proof-of-Stake mechanism to ensure that transactions are validated correctly, making it difficult and expensive for an adversary to attack the network and validate false information. Validators are required to stake a predefined number of the network’s tokens in order to be able to produce and verify blocks. In return, they earn block rewards that come from token supply inflation, transaction fees, and storage fees.
There are three types of validator nodes contributing to secure the NEAR network:
- Chunk producers. These collect transactions for a shard, produce and communicate shard blocks, called chunks.
- Block producers. They produce a single block containing all current chunks.
- These watch and verify that state transitions in different blocks are accurate.
If you want to become a validator node on NEAR, you will need to stake NEAR tokens. The exact amount you need to stake depends on how many tokens are being staked by other validators within a given shard. This also determines your cut of block rewards which are paid out every epoch (12 hours).
Each shard on NEAR contains 100 seats, and you must have at least 1 seat to be a validator. The cost of each seat is determined by the total amount of NEAR being staked (e.g. take the total stake in that shard and divide it by 100, and that is the cost of the seat). Misbehaving validators risk losing part of their stake (slashing). Validators and delegators can choose to unstake at any time.
NEAR has its own native called NEAR, which is used by the system to pay the validators who provide the scarce compute and storage resources that power the network.
There are a total of 1 billion NEAR tokens. Its ICO that was held in 2020 distributed among its members, community grants, foundation endowment, early investors, among others.
Transaction fees are priced based on their complexity, and storage fees are priced based on the amount and of space used and for how long. The system compensates validators using a static inflation rate (5%) which is offset by burning the tokens received for transaction and storage fees. Both of these fees are set in a unit called “gas,” which is priced in NEAR tokens by using a simple market-driven process that gets smoothed out by the system’s ability to dynamically add or remove capacity via resharding.
For more details on its economics, please see the project’s, Economics Paper.
The NEAR Project was founded by Alex Skidanov and Illia Polosukhin. The two met while Skidanov worked at U.S. startup accelerator Y Combinator, and in July 2018, began work on a project which focused on allowing developers to build and release software with less friction.
Alex started his professional career at Microsoft in 2009 and then joined MemSQL in 2011, where he worked for 5 years as an Architect and Director of Engineering. Illia (CEO, Near Inc) has over 10 years of experience as a senior developer, including three years at Google, where he was a major Tensor-Flow contributor and a manager of the team building question-answering capabilities for the core Google search.
The NEAR Protocol core contributors include several ex-MemSQL engineers responsible for building sharding, cross-shard transactions, and distributed JOINs and an award-winning team of former Google, Facebook, MemSQL, and Niantic engineers who are reputed to have developed and implemented some of the only real-world sharded systems being used at scale.
What’s more, the project is backed by over 40 investment firms, including Pantera Capital, Libertus, Blockchange, Animal Ventures, Distributed Global, Notation Capital, among others, and led by the venture.
In conclusion, investing in NEAR protocol does have to seem to be a wise choice. The price charts alone are positive, despite the entire market being currently down.
However, there still does need to be a word of caution. Even though the project has a solid team with strong development, it nevertheless still faces an uphill battle. NEAR protocol is in direct competition with OG of smart-contract platforms; Ethereum. Then you also have Cardano, Polkadot, Avalanche, Harmoney, Hydra, Binance Smart Chain, Huobi, and many more. Therefore, investors should not only be cautious about whether or not to invest in NEAR but should also not ‘put all of theirs eggs into one basket.' Portfolio diversification is still recommended.
Nevertheless, there is little doubt that so long as NEAR continued to develop and establish partnerships, the price will most likely one day go to the moon.