Recent congestion and high fees on Ethereum and Bitcoin networks have prompted users and projects to seek alternatives, and Cardano’s excellent start to the year has made it an attractive one.
To keep up with the competition, Cardano’s development team is putting in extra time and effort to grow the network and improve its features. This year has seen a rush of innovations on the Proof-of-Stake (POS) chain, including new protocols and smart contracts, strengthening its position as a major player and innovator in the DeFi industry.
Due to its focus on research and groundbreaking innovations, Cardano has been called an “Ethereum killer” blockchain. The POS network has gradually closed the gap between itself and its rivals by encouraging developers to create smart contracts on its Plutus platform.
Cardano’s progress has accelerated greatly as it continues to gain popularity in the DeFi sector. Notably, the POS network demonstrated its growth by incorporating over a thousand Plutus V1 smart contracts into its network in 2023.
As of the 18th of May, 5,776 Plutus V1 scripts, mostly related to DeFi apps, are hosted on Cardano. Cardano Blockchain Insights data shows that there were only 4,718 V1 scripts on the network on January 1st.
Cardano’s prominence in the DeFi area and ranking as the 7th biggest network by market value has been bolstered by the dramatic growth in the number of deployed smart contracts.
Santiment, a social analytics platform, issued a study on December 30 that ranked Cardano as the most active protocol in terms of development, ahead of both Polkadot (DOT) and Cosmos (ATOM). Despite moving to a POS consensus method, Ethereum still managed to place in the top five.
In only one week, 125,000 smart contracts were added to the network. DeFiLlama data shows that the network now has $26 billion in total value locked (TVL) in DeFi protocols, well surpassing Cardano’s $150 million.
The surge in cryptocurrency activity is most evident on Ethereum, where petrol prices have risen to levels not seen since May 2022. According to Etherscan, the national average price of petrol reached 155 gwei on May 5.
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