“The global blockchain technology market size was valued at USD 5.92 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 85.9% from 2022 to 2030,” says a report by Grand View Research. That’s an impressive growth projection, but we are not surprised! The world of blockchains has grown to enormous proportions and is expanding at a rapid rate, thanks to the growing venture capital funding for blockchain technology companies and the innovative technologies being constantly developed within the blockchain space. All this has resulted in a lot of Web3 businesses and developers wanting to build the next big thing for the Web3 services and solutions market.
However, for any development project in the blockchain space to succeed, it must be built on top of the right blockchain network. Startups, scale-ups, individual developers, and sometimes even enterprises need guidance in this regard to avoid making costly mistakes. To provide this much-needed guidance, we have compiled a list of the top five blockchain protocols ideal for Web3 projects.
Top 5 blockchain protocols
Ethereum is a high-performance, open-source blockchain protocol with smart contract support. It is secure and decentralized by design and is aggressively growing with thousands of live projects in areas like DeFi, NFTs and gaming. Ethereum relies on a consensus mechanism called Proof of Work that requires miners to find the nonce for blocks through trial and error.
We rate Ethereum as the top blockchain to build various Web3 projects. There are 6199 public nodes registered on Ethereum’s network, which is the highest for any protocol we have on our list. The write speed is 1ms, and the read speed is 59ms. Although the gas fee, pegged at 265400.03 Gwei (One Gwei equals 0.000000001 ETH), is high, Ethereum is counted among the most developer-friendly protocols for its all-around performance.
Under Ethereum’s grant program, developers can receive $1.3B for various development projects.
Ethereum offers various add-ons such as VSCode, intelliJ, and security auditing tools.
By facilitating oracle integration, Ethereum makes it easy for developers to build dynamic and robust applications.
Hedera is an open-source, public network, ideal for developing and deploying dApps, with solidity-based smart contracts and tokens as its core services. Hedera is secure, energy-efficient and fast — qualities that can be attributed to the protocol’s hashgraph consensus algorithm. Hedera resolves decentralization issues by separating consensus and governance.
Hedera ranks second on our list for its overall performance as a blockchain protocol. The protocol is popular for its great read speed, write speed, and uptime.
Hedera provides complete ready documentation on APIs, node setup, skeleton code and validator nodes.
Hedera add-ons include security auditing tools, VSCode and IntelliJ.
Hedera’s third-party services include cloud services, managed APIs, and oracle integration.
Solana is an open-source, public blockchain with smart contract support. The protocol is known for its ability to host highly scalable decentralized applications. Solana’s consensus mechanism is a mix of Proof of Stake (PoS) and Proof of History (PoH).
Solana is one the best-performing protocols with a total of 1969 nodes, 1ms write speed, 958.2ms read speed, and a gas fee of 1785245802.64 Gwei.
Solana has proper documentation for APIs, node setup, and validator nodes, while there is no documentation for skeleton code.
Solana has so far paid a whopping $314m to its developers.
The availability of add-ons like VSCode, IntelliJ, and security auditing tools has helped Solana become the most reliable blockchain protocol.
Solana’s third-party services include cloud-based infrastructure and storage, managed APIs and oracle integration.
Polkadot is an open-source blockchain protocol that facilitates interconnectivity and interoperability among blockchains through its unique sharded architecture. The protocol brings together different blockchains and creates a single unified network with them. Since it serves as a connecting link for blockchains, Polkadot is also known as a multi-chain network.
Outstripping many high-performance blockchain protocols, Polkadot bags the fourth position on our list of top-performing blockchain protocols. As far as Polkadot’s performance is concerned, it manages 297297 nodes, a read speed of 2.33ms, a write speed of 4066ms, a gas fee of 15.21mROC, and an uptime percentage of 100.
The protocol provides documentation on APIs, node setup, skeleton codes and validator nodes.
Polkadot offers grant proceeds of $293m to its developers.
Polkadot add-ons include VSCode, IntelliJ, and security auditing tools.
Polkadot offers multiple third-party services such as managed APIs, cloud services and oracle integration.
NEAR is a smart-contract compatible blockchain, designed and built to support the development of highly secure and scalable dApps. NEAR stands to solve problems related to scalability and interoperability associated with many legacy blockchains with its community-governed sharded blockchain platform.
The NEAR protocol uses the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus mechanism for the validation of transactions. To provide Proof of Stake, users need to stake a certain number of NEAR tokens into a smart contract on the NEAR blockchain. Doing so puts their capital at stake. The staked tokens are then considered collateral and are destroyed when nodes don’t perform their roles diligently or behave dishonestly.
NEAR is a highly performant blockchain protocol with a total of 732 nodes on the NEAR network. Its write speed is 1ms and the gas fee is 201659.25 Gwei.
NEAR boasts a rich repository of foundation tools that includes SDKs such as AssemblyScript SDK and Rust SDK; support for programming languages such as Rust and AssemblyScript; and certain other essential tools like developer IDE, network stats, node explorer, smart contracts, testnet, faucet and wallets.
NEAR offers proper documentation for APIs, node setup, skeleton code and validator nodes.
NEAR’s third-party services include node setup and managed APIs.
The community of developers is growing unabated. Thus, blockchain protocols must consider tailoring their infrastructure and modus operandi to meet this growing community’s evolving development needs. Although there is a lot that protocols can do to enhance user experience, the first step would be to make themselves highly developer-friendly.
Besides, the blockchain market is fast becoming crowded with new players, which means that it’s time we started assessing the available protocols’ utility and value for developers. And this provides the premise for the development of a neutral, third-party protocol assessment tool.
The above five protocols are the top performers, and hence, the most developer-friendly. If you are a developer, then you can refer to the above data to avoid costly development mistakes. However, it’s worth noting here that all values mentioned above are subject to change, and the list of top protocols we have provided here is not timeproof. It will change as networks evolve and make changes in their design or work.