What the F is NFT?
A non-fungible token (NFT) is a unique token that is utilized to represent various types of digital assets like artworks, game items, skins, music, videos, books, etc that are verified on a blockchain. The contents of the NFTs are usually stored in a decentralized data storage platform.
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NFTs are distinguishable from fungible cryptocurrencies and conventional currencies since they are not interchangeable with one another. For example, users can’t buy or sell one contract to a different one since the “original content” varies from each other.
In the crypto world, 1 Crypto Punk is not the same as any of the other Crypto Punks in existence.
In contrast, “fungibility” allows a token or currency to be indistinguishable from one another and have the same value. For example, 1 BTC is always equal to BTC in the same way a 1 peso coin is always equal to all other 1 peso coins.
What types of NFTs are there?
NFTs can be just about anything, but there are a few categories that stand out at present.
- Collectibles — The NFT space first started to take off with the launch of Cryptokitties, which consist of digital cat collectibles that can be bred and traded on the blockchain. This is why collectibles are the most basic use cases of NFTs. They are akin to baseball cards or Commemorative Coins, which are regarded as being of value since people are willing to pay a certain price to collect them.
- Digital art — Digital art is currently the most popular type of NFT right now, with some pieces selling for several millions. Beeple’s Everydays sold for a whopping $69 million. Digital art may come in the form of scanned hand drawings or computer-generated virtual illustrations.
- Virtual real estate — You’ve surely heard of Facebook’s rebrand into Meta, which is in line with the company’s new vision to create a metaverse. You can think of a metaverse as an extension of our own universe that exists in cyberspace. Interestingly, you can already buy plots of land, buildings, boats, yachts, spaceships, and all other assets in a metaverse in the form of NFTs.
- In-game items and characters — The new play-to-earn sector is cashing in on NFTs by incorporating non-fungible elements to their games, from skins to equipment, to heroes, to monsters, the list goes on.
How to get started with NFTs?
The first move in anyone’s NFT journey is to create a web3 wallet necessary for the purchase, trade, and sale of digital assets. The wallet enables users to securely interact with various NFT marketplaces.
Note that you need different kinds of wallets for different networks. For example, Magic Eden only supports Solana-based wallets like Phantom and Solflare while OpenSea only supports Ethereum wallets like MetaMask.
The vast majority of NFT projects are on OpenSea, which supports only Ethereum and Polygon. Luckily, the most universal wallet, MetaMask, runs on Ethereum.
MetaMask is a Chrome extension web3 wallet that allows you to seamlessly interact with NFT marketplaces. First, you need to download and install it on your browser. Then you can create a wallet. Make sure to secure the provided seed phrase as you’ll need that to access your assets in case of loss. (Read More: How to Use MetaMask: A Guide for Filipinos)
Solana currently has a booming ecosystem of NFT projects, kind of like Ethereum in early 2021. Now’s a good time to get into it. Not to mention the fees are ultra-low, which makes it affordable to buy NFTs on a budget. The two most popular Solana wallets are currently Phantom Wallet and Solflare.
Tezos is probably one of the most underrated blockchains. While the quantity of NFT projects launching on Tezos pales in comparison to ETH and SOL, it is the second most popular platform for individual and independent artists. Of course, Ethereum is still number one. If you want to dabble in Tezos NFTs, the Temple wallet is the most popular option.
Cardano also has its fair share of NFTs, despite its recent launch of smart contracts. Nami Wallet is currently the most suitable Cardano-based digital wallet for NFTs. However, Yoroi and Daedalus wallets can also work, although they don’t have the capability to view NFTs within the app.
How to mint your own NFTs
Minting NFT refers to converting a digital file into a crypto token that is stored on a blockchain, giving you exclusive ownership and access to it.
Earlier, we talked about setting up your wallet. Make sure that your MetaMask is ready as you will need that to create an account in an NFT marketplace in order to mint. Now, let’s explore how you can mint your own NFTs.
OpenSea is the most popular platform for minting NFTs, so we’ll use that as an example. You need to head over to its website and click the hamburger icon on the top-right side. This should prompt a sidebar, where you can find a “Connect wallet” button in blue. Click it.
You will then be asked to select from all supported wallets. Choose MetaMask or whatever wallet you have. And now your account is done. You may edit your profile as you see fit.
Before you can mint, be sure to top up your MetaMask wallet with some ETH, preferably worth over $100.
To start minting, go over to your profile and click “Create”, which will take you to the NFT creation page. You’ll need to fill out the details like the name, description, links to your website or social media account, etc. After filling out the initial fields, you can add further customizations, such as adding properties, stats, unlockable content, etc.
Once the minting is done, click “Create” and voila, you just minted your very first NFT.
Flipping refers to purchasing items at low prices and selling them later for a profit.
While some might take the art of flipping lightly, it takes careful research and a good eye to spot undervalued NFTs, especially today when the market is getting too saturated. You need to be able to gauge whether an NFT project has the potential to flourish in the future, and you need to be able to determine which pieces are rare.
The more skilled you are at sniping undervalued NFT listings, the more money you can make. However, you also have to be very careful as you could end up with a loss as NFTs are not nearly as liquid as cryptocurrencies, nor do they guarantee value appreciation or future returns.
Top 5 NFT Marketplaces to Buy NFTs
Here are the different marketplaces to buy or sell NFTs.
With over 140,000 unique wallet addresses conducting transactions in 30 days, OpenSea is the leading and most extensive marketplace, offering all existing categories of NFTs from in-game items to virtual land, to domain names. It has various types of auction processes that give users the freedom to sell their NFTs as they please.
OpenSea primarily supports Ethereum, Polygon, and Klaytn networks.
Rarible is another Ethereum-focused NFT marketplace run by a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) consisting of RARI holders. Rarible offers the so-called lazy minting, enabling users to list their NFTs without spending gas until their item is sold.
Magic Eden is the hottest new marketplace for Solana-based NFTs such as Degen Ape Academy and Thugbirdz. Ethereum users usually find Solana-powered NFT marketplaces to be quite reassuring since the fees are almost non-existent, which allows them to list and mint as they please.
HEN is home to a vibrant community of art aficionados, probably more than any NFT marketplace today. In fact, the ratio of artworks from independent artists to NFT projects is highest on HEN. The marketplace has attracted some of the best digital artists in the world, even those who don’t know much about crypto.
HEN runs on Tezos, therefore, you need the Temple or Kukai wallet to transact in it.
CNFT is currently the most popular NFT marketplace powered by Cardano. Cardano smart contracts are fairly new, hence, the website may be buggy at times. Unfortunately, there are few other marketplaces that run on Cardano.
This article is published on BitPinas: NFT Philippines Guide | How to Mint NFT Art | Top NFT Marketplaces Right Now