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NFTs – Utility or Collectibility?

The NFT industry is growing at a rapid pace. While the crypto winters have temporarily slowed down the sales of NFTs, the growth is expected to see a new height as the winter starts to thaw. While we prepare for a new wave of NFT adoption, an important question needs to be answered. 

For a larger part of NFT development, the project has been focusing on creating highly collectible NFTs that the collectors can add to their portfolios. However, these collectible NFTs do not have any real utility except for being a digital trophy. 

However, slowly but gradually, projects are developing more utility-rich NFTs with real-world utility. These NFTs are called Utility NFTs. 

What is Utility NFTs?

Utility NFTs are NFTs with utility beyond being digital collectibles. These NFTs are paired with owner privileges, rewards, or rights that only the holders have access to. Blockchain technology can also enable existing NFTs with more utility by adding privileges for holders such as community memberships. 

One of the examples of Utility NFTs is When You See Yourself, by Kings of Leon. This NFT collection gave the NFT holder the ability to download the album using different mediums and also the ability to redeem the NFT for top seats at Kings of Leon shows or a real-life physical limited edition. 

Other than that, projects such as PhotoChromic are using NFTs to link identity to a digital asset, ensuring digital privacy and safety for all its users. Here are some other Utility NFTs. 

  • VeeFriends – A series of NFTs from Gary Vaynerchuk that provide holders with tickets to the VeeCon conference via NFT ticket airdrops. 
  • Crypto Baristas – An “all-encompassing caffeine experience” that entitles NFT holders to discounts at future cafe locations, at an online store, and on merchandise. 
  • World of Women – An NFT project seeking to support and educate women and increase female participation in NFTs and Web3. World of Women NFT holders gets access to benefits, including ownership of the artwork underlying the NFT and invitations to real-life events.
  • GainForest – An international nonprofit based in Switzerland that aims to use blockchain to help preserve rainforests. People who donate to GainForest will receive NFTs that correspond to actual areas of forest, track the forest’s health, and mint governance tokens.

Moreover, brands such as KFC and Starbucks are also launching unique utility-rich NFTs to shift the landscape of the NFT market from being just digital collectible to something more.

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