Amidst the uncertainties surrounding blockchain technology and its applications, many wonder whether Web3 still holds substantial real-world use cases. Raj Gokal, a co-founder of the Solana blockchain protocol and the Chief Operations Officer at Solana Labs, shared his insights in a recent interview.
According to Goskal, his journey through venture capital and health tech ultimately led him to the crypto industry. Gokal dedicated his efforts to the health tech field for seven years. He aimed to tackle the complex challenges of the United States healthcare system.
However, he soon recognized several other industry issues, especially health plans and regulators. During this time, he crossed paths with Anatoly Yakovenko, another co-founder of Solana and was captivated by Yakovenko’s vision to resolve scalability issues in cryptocurrency.
Thus, Gokal embarked on a transformative journey into the world of crypto. However, the Solana co-founder stated that this journey has proved to be incredibly rewarding over the past five years.
Exploring Web3 And Real-World Use Cases
While speaking about Web3, scalability, and tokenization, Gokal argued that critics of Web3, regarding its lack of real-world use cases, have insufficient knowledge about it. Hence, Gokal highlighted a notable example – the decentralized physical infrastructure network, DEPIN.
In this sector, developers are at the forefront, building projects like Helium to establish a decentralized 5G network using Solana. They also built Hivemapper, which remapped a substantial portion of the world’s roadways in months through decentralized maps.
These projects underscore the potential of blockchain technology to foster scalable, innovative solutions without huge costs.
Architectural Considerations For Real-World Blockchain Solutions
As for the architectural considerations crucial for building real-world solutions on layer-1 platforms like Solana, Gokal emphasized the importance of parallel transaction processing and validation. He said that Solana has pioneered these features, enabling lightning-fast transaction times without huge costs, which fosters trust and user satisfaction.
Gokal added that compatibility and composability are equally vital because they allow diverse applications to work seamlessly. He also said decentralization, a cornerstone of Web3, ensures long-term reliability.
However, the Solana co-founder emphasizes that the feasibility and scalability of real-world solutions depend on combining various architectural factors rather than relying on a single feature. Furthermore, he stressed the importance of battle-testing blockchain networks across various market conditions to guarantee confidence in their longevity.
Payments And Asset Tokenization In Web3
Gokal also stated that Solana has taken significant steps in the mobile and payments sectors by introducing Solana Pay and launching the Saga phone. He believes these initiatives open up new opportunities for the handset and operating system makers to create environments where developers can innovate with token incentives and minimal restrictions on nonfungible tokens (NFTs).
The Saga phone’s impact is likened to Tesla’s journey in making electric vehicles accessible to the masses. It’s a promising start that may pave the way for Web3-friendly mobile phones in the coming years.
On the other hand, Solana Pay aims to foster a more accessible and open payment ecosystem similar to the original vision of cryptocurrencies for permissionless peer-to-peer online payments. This initiative has enabled cross-border remittance projects like Decaf and platforms like Sling to become competitors for services like Venmo.
Gokal further explained that real-world asset tokenization has enormous potential, especially in the real estate industry. Initiatives like Parcl and Homebase are pioneers in this space, offering fractional ownership of individual properties and global accessibility to rental income.
Meanwhile, Gokal emphasized the importance of addressing reliability issues to address technical difficulties in the Web3 sector. Players in the industry have learned from past mistakes and are making efforts to minimize outages, which is essential for institutional adoption.
Solana is one of the networks that has made significant progress in enhancing stability and dependability. In Gokal’s view, achieving product-market fit in the layer-1 protocol space involves two stages.
The first is where founders and developers secure funding to launch products. The second is end-user product-market fit, where users derive value from actively contributing to networks.
The DEPIN network is a prime example. It allows users to utilize their hardware to earn crypto by supporting networks that add real-world value.