In the evolving landscape of decentralized messaging apps, Session stands out as a frontrunner, offering a robust, open-source and fully decentralized platform that puts security first and gives back data control to users.
Blockchain is, by default, associated with financial applications and profit-making opportunities, with Bitcoin (BTC) being its first use case and decentralized finance (DeFi) representing its most promising trend.
However, the technology is industry-agnostic and can transform any data-driven market where privacy and security are core elements.
The financial sector has already embraced the potential of blockchain technology, with influential global institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and the Bank for International Settlements regularly discussing it. However, there is another sector in need of increased security and decentralization — communication.
The most popular messaging apps, including WhatsApp, Telegram, Signal and Threema, use centralized servers, which leaves them vulnerable to security challenges like hacking attacks. This can affect the millions of users sharing their data with these apps. For example, in 2021, Facebook (now Meta) experienced a personal data leak that affected a whopping 500 million users, who saw their details shared online.
While these centralized messaging apps apply advanced encryption methods, their centralized architecture is a security issue. Users have to trust these entities in the first place — sharing one’s name, phone number and even their bank account details with an unknown entity doesn’t come naturally to the modern individual without an element of trust.
Decentralized messaging apps can bring more utility to the crypto world
Building a decentralized messaging infrastructure can ensure greater privacy and security for end users and give them more control over their information while providing blockchain technology a considerable new market to demonstrate its potential to regular people. Acquiring new users beyond the tech-savvy crypto community is still a big task for blockchain, and communication is the most relevant market where this should happen.
Previously, explaining the benefits of decentralized, peer-to-peer (P2P) communication was more difficult, as most people would opt for a good user experience in any case. Today, decentralized messaging apps can leverage a large user base of cryptocurrency users who understand the power of censorship-resistant architecture very well. Eventually, regular people may use these messaging apps and join the Web3 space without necessarily hunting for profits or having to buy tokens.
How this decentralized messaging app offers privacy and security on layer 1
Several decentralized messaging apps are addressing the persistent challenges of their centralized counterparts. The most popular of them is Session, an open-source, completely decentralized and end-to-end encrypted messaging app.
Session has been running on the Oxen Service Node Network, a proprietary layer-1 network that comprises more than 1,700 community nodes dispersed worldwide. This infrastructure offers a private messaging experience for people who want to communicate freely without the fear of censorship or surveillance. The app, which currently boasts more than 800,000 monthly active users, is free to use and doesn’t require a phone number or email address to register.
Another privacy-focused application that utilizes cryptocurrency to provide users with a better experience than competing apps is Brave Browser, which uses BAT (Basic Attention Token) to allow users to be paid directly by advertisers for their attention. Today, they have nearly 60 million users, and Session is well underway to become the Brave Browser of messaging apps.
By integrating crypto seamlessly into the app's infrastructure, it is able to provide security features that would not be possible without decentralization, and which centralized apps struggle to compete with. Likewise, users can easily avoid interacting with the token that powers the app if they choose to, meaning that the potential market for the product is not limited to crypto users only.
These sorts of applications can unlock the true potential of Web3. The key to mass adoption is that users don’t need to know how it works — it just works.
Chris McCabe, CEO of Session, said:
“Session is a rare gem in the decentralized app space. It’s not just about blockchain. It’s about building an easy-to-use and functional platform. By putting the user first and letting crypto do the hard work behind the scenes, Session has carved out a niche that resonates with the real world.”
The door to mass adoption
Session has been able to establish a strong reputation and uniquely large user base while running on a layer 1 chain. The next step on the road to mass adoption will allow it to fully take advantage of the power of Web3.
The app is in the process of transitioning from the layer-1 Oxen chain to an EVM-compatible chain, and the OXEN coin will become Session Token: a new ERC-20 token that will run on a layer 2 chain and be compatible with most Web3 applications. Session Token (SENT) will have a totally upgraded tokenomic structure that is designed to drive growth and enable scalability for Session and its network.
EVM-compatible layer 2 networks such as Arbitrum, Optimism and Polygon bring more opportunities for Web3 integrations, easier access to liquidity and decentralized exchanges, as well as a familiar onboarding process. This is a major change that will resolve many of the challenges that have previously affected Sessions’ crypto layer.
Additionally, the use cases of the Session tokens will extend beyond just a means of exchange within the app to potentially support in-app purchases, governance, premium features or bridging communications with other DApps.
In essence, Session’s move to EVM compatibility is not only a technological advancement but a significant step that has the potential to revolutionize the crypto communication market and redefine the landscape of decentralized and more secure messaging.
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