Polkadot was one of 2020’s most anticipated mainnet launches. Despite launching in May 2020, the Web 3 Foundation – which developed Polkadot – has been hard at work with other teams to create an ecosystem of blockchains and applications on the network. In this report, we outline the basics of Polkadot’s mechanics while highlighting a few stand-out projects that are helping build DeFi on Polkadot.
- Polkadot’s primary differentiator is its use of on-chain governance one every layer of the network. On-chain governance is experimental, but if proven successful could help Polkadot create a moat.
- The DeFi stack on Polkadot is attempting to recreate the same functionality and synergy of Ethereum. Having multiple blockchains on Polkadot and native interoperability, however, promises to enhance composability and scalability.
- Smart contracts aren’t supported on the Polkadot base layer, placing near-term focus on infrastructure focused blockchains building this functionality like Edgeware and Plasm.
- The Web 3 Foundation has commissioned several bridges to link Polkadot with Cosmos, Bitcoin, and Ethereum. Existing solutions like Ren Protocol are porting to Polkadot too.
- Overall, the network is nascent and it’s too early to pass judgment on whether Pol