Decentralized Finance (DeFi)

What is Decentralized Finance?
Decentralized finance (DeFi) are financial smart contracts, decentralized applications (DApps), and protocols built on Ethereum, that can be pieced together like a Lego.
Financial DApps are one of the hottest use case of Ethereum at the given moment.

Why use DeFi?
As the size and complexity of our economies grew, central authorities (i.e. governments, central banks, corporations) gained more power as more people placed trust in them. However we often have very little say in how corporations handle our investments, or even how our governments manage the economy.
DeFi aims to create a financial system that’s open to everyone and minimizes one’s need to trust and rely on central authorities. Technologies like the internet, cryptography, and blockchain give us the tools to collectively build and control a financial system without the need for central authorities.

What can you do with DeFi?
There are several use cases of DeFi:
Lendinglend or borrow tokens and also earn passive income
Decentralized exchanges (DEXes)buy, sell, or trade cryptocurrencies or tokens
Derivativestrade nearly any asset using synthetic pricing
Paymentstransfer funds by using payment channels
Assetsmanage tokenized physical assets such as gold
Prediction / Betting marketsbet on the outcome of any event
Insuranceinsure yourself by sharing risk with a community of people

How to get involved in DeFi?
– get a DeFi wallet and pick a DApp to use [guide]
– explore more resources on The DeFi List or here
– check DeFi explorers to get more data and learn about risks
– read this recommendations before investing in DeFi

Run your own Business

Use these solutions to set up and run your own business / project on Ethereum.

Why should your business go bankless?

Create Wallet

  • Self-custody bank
    Multiscrypto-first business banking
    Gnosis Safe Multisigconfirm transactions by requiring multiple signatures

Use DApps

  • Tokenization
    OpenLaw  – build and manage your legal commercial relationships, e.g. tokenize services of your company
    Aragoncreate and manage your decentralized company or organization (DAO)

How to create a bankless DAO?

  • Payments
    Coinbase Commerce  – accept payments in ETH / DAI in your app or website
    Stablepaysend and receive payments converted to DAI

How to accept crypto payments?

  • Taxes
    – learn how to record your crypto for taxes here

Readings

Run a blockchain project  – seven mistakes to avoid in blockchain projects
Building DeFi DApps – things I wish I knew before building Ethereum DeFi DApps
Contributors  – ten simple rules for helping newcomers become contributors to your open project
DAO  – the year of the DAO comeback
Economy  – our economy is out of date
Cryptoeconomics  – an introduction
Stablecoins  – where stablecoins are headed
GDPR – findings on the intersection with blockchain technology

Get started as easy at it gets

Choose one of the following options:

  • Opera
    Use popular browser with integrated Ethereum mobile wallet with a DApp explorer and possibility of buying ETH.
  • Fortmatic
    Enter DApps by following these simple steps:
  1. choose and enter DApp, that you would like to use
  2. when you will be asked to connect your wallet, choose Fortmatic
  3. create an account by using your email address or phone number
  4. use chosen DApp and also many others by logging in with a same account
  5. as you may need some ETH by using DApps, you can buy it directly through Fortmatic
For a security of your funds please consider learning more about wallets 
and best practices first.

Use ETH or DAI as money

One of the key benefits of cryptocurrencies is how quick and cheap they are to send to others.

  • you can send ETH / DAI across the globe in just a few minutes. That’s fascinating when you compare to using a bank transfer or similar which can take several days.
  • you can spend ETH / DAI for your payments in the real world
BEFORE YOU BEGIN

- you will need to have your wallet to store your ETH / DAI
Create your wallet

- where to get them?
Buy ETH or DAI
Earn ETH
Mine ETH
Stake ETH

Services

Coinbase Card  – Visa debit card, funded by your Coinbase balance, allows you to spend your crypto worldwide
Monolith Visa debit card – exchange your Ethereum-based tokens to fiat and spend anywhere that accepts Visa

Learn more

Why ETH could achieve money status?

How to get your first crypto Visa card?

Which merchants accepts ETH?

Explorers

Various explorers will provide you useful Ethereum ecosystem’s informations and services.

How to view details about your transaction?

How to browse DApps?

Blockchain

Etherscan  – block explorer and analytics platform
Amberdata  – live monitoring, insights, blockchain data and smart contracts
Ethplorer  – block explorer providing token information and analytics
BlockScout  – blockchain explorer inspecting and analyzing EVM based blockchains
Alethio  – data, analytics & visualization platform
Ethernodes  – Ethereum network & node explorer
Ethereum Gas Station  – explorer of a gas prices, transaction confirmation times, and miner policies on the Ethereum network
Gitcoin Gas Station  – gas price history chart
Ethereum 2.0 Beacon Chain Explorer  – using Prysmatic’s client

DApps

State of the dApps  – curated directory of decentralized applications
DappReview  – DApp data, user insights and market analytics
DappRadar  – data (volume, DAU, etc) on decentralized applications

Decentralized Finance

DeFi Pulse  – decentralized finance’s tools tracked and ranked by value locked
Loanscan  – loan explorer
Pools.fyi  – find the best liquidity pools
DeFi Score  – open framework for evaluating DeFi protocols
DeFi Watch – monitoring of centralization risks in DeFi

Decentralized Exchanges

DEXWatch  – decentralized exchanges explorer
Etherscan DEX Tracker –  decentralized exchanges explorer
DexIndex  – tool that searches Ethereum decentralized exchanges to find the best token prices

Market

OnChainFX  – cryptoasset network value, market cap, rankings and metrics

Use DApps

There are many Ethereum-based applications (DApps), that you can use today and here you can find a few suggestions and usecases.

Start benefit from their unique features right now.

BEFORE YOU BEGIN

- in general, you will be asked to connect your wallet in order to use DApps
Create your wallet

- some DApps may require you to have ETH or DAI cryptocurrency in your wallet
Buy ETH or DAI

- confused? Want to get started as easy as it gets?
Follow this guide

DAI
– buy and use stable cryptocurrency that holds value at $1 USD [guide]

InstaDApp
– lend, borrow, leverage or swap crypto assets [guide]

Uniswap
– trade your ETH for other tokens [guide]
– create a pool for your own tokens [guide]

Synthetix
– buy and trade tokens that are pegged to different assets such as gold, Bitcoin, U.S. Dollars, TESLA, and AAPL [guide]

  • Social

Aragon
– create and manage decentralized companies, organizations or communities (DAOs) [guide]
– they wil be global, censorship resistant, transparent, bureaucracy-free and customizable

3Box
– create your social profile for Ethereum [guide]

Status
– chat, browse DApps or transact privately and securely [guide]

  • Marketplaces

OpenSea
– buy, sell, and discover exclusive digital assets like Gods Unchained CardsENS namesCryptoKittiesDecentraland land and other [guide]

Decentraland
– enter a virtual world where you can build and explore 3D creations, play games and socialize [guide]

  • Games

CryptoKitties
– collect and breed digital collectible cats, buy & sell them with a community and other [guide]
– each cat is one-of-a-kind and 100% owned by you; it cannot be replicated, taken away, or destroyed

0xUniverse
– build spaceships, explore the galaxy, and colonize collectible planets

  • Miscellaneous

Brave
– install web and mobile browser integrated with BAT and ERC-20 tokens [guide]
– earn by viewing privacy-respecting ads and reward your favourite content creators

Bounties Network
– get paid for doing work in any sphere of activity or get accelerate your own project [guide]

PoolTogether
– join a no-loss lottery for a chance to win a prize or send a ticket to your friends [guide]
– all the deposited DAI in the pool earn interest, so the prizes are funded solely by the interest earned

Kleros
– become a juror and earn arbitration fees each time you rule on a dispute [guide]

For more usecases please follow here.

Create Wallet

What is a wallet?
Wallet is your window to the Ethereum world.
– it works just like your classical bank account, i.e. it allows you to hold and send ETH / DAI
– it allows you to interact with Ethereum-based applications (DApps)

Wallet address
Just as bank account numbers are used for transactions between bank accounts, the Ethereum account address is referenced when sending funds to the wallet.

Private key / Seed phrase
The main strength of decentralized wallet and difference between the existing banking system is a fact, that user own private key of his wallet.

Pros: You are the only one, who has an access to your funds
Cons: Losing your private key means losing your funds, so store it safely and take security seriously

Additionally:
– smart contract wallets enable additional security and recovery features for users
– wallet SDKs offer login and recovery features just like classical apps
– hardware wallets provide cold storage and are great for storing large amounts of money

Ethereum Wallets

There are many varieties of wallets out there to choose and with various features.

desktop:
Metamask
MyCrypto

mobile:
Argent
Coinbase Wallet

Cons: You have to carry around your private key / seed phrase, what could be risky and dangerous and could be less user’s friendly

Download an extension / app -> write down the 12-word seed phrase and store it safely -> send ETH to your wallet (required in Metamask)

  • Wallet SDKs

Fortmatic
Torus
Portis

Cons: It’s security and privacy rely on a service provider, wallets only work for DApps that integrate them and their advanced functionalities could be priced

Create an account by using your e-mail / phone / password / Google or other accounts -> use supported DApps

  • Cards

Monolith Visa debit card
Coinbase Card

Cons: Requires identity verification and you have to carry around your card and private key / seed phrase, what could be risky and dangerous

Download an app -> create a wallet -> apply for a card -> exchange ETH for fiat -> spend it wherever Visa is accepted

  • Hardware wallets

Trezor
Ledger

Cons: Cost money and you have to carry around your device and private key / seed phrase, what could be risky and dangerous

Buy a device -> set it up -> write down the 12-word seed phrase -> store both on safe place

For more wallets and security resources please follow here.

Buy Ether (ETH) or DAI

What is Ether?
ETH is Ethereum’s native currency. It is “digital money” that can be sent over the internet instantly and cheaply, and also be used in many Ethereum-based applications.

Want to avoid volatility of cryptocurrency prices?
Buy DAI (decentralized stablecoin running on Ethereum, that maintain a value of $1.00 USD) or use this buying tactic.

How to buy ETH or DAI?

Like exchanging into the local currency in a foreign country you’re visiting, you can buy it for different fiat money ($, €, ¥, £,..), by using various payment methods, platforms / apps.

  • On centralized exchange

Coinbase
Kraken

Cons: Requires identity verification and it is recommended for added security to withdraw purchased ETH / DAI into a wallet in your own control

Create an account -> buy ETH / DAI with card or bank transfer -> (optional) withdraw funds into your wallet

  • Directly into your wallet

desktop:
MyCrypto
Fortmatic

mobile:
Argent
Trust

Cons: Higher fees

Requires first to create / have your own wallet

  • Peer-to-peer on marketplace / in-person by cash

LocalCryptos
Dether

Cons: Requires to follow ETH price, as it is set by a seller

Create an account / wallet -> find a seller -> buy ETH / DAI with cash or other various payment methods

Learn how to create your own wallet.