Opera, Africa’s most popular mobile phone browser, has enabled users to access decentralized web pages with a .crypto domain extension. The new .crypto extension can be connected to users’ public cryptocurrency address, allowing third-parties to more easily send funds.
Opera browsers and mobile applications are used by more than 350 million people around the world and nearly 120 million people in Africa. In countries like Nigeria and Kenya, Opera is the browser of choice for every second mobile internet user. The Opera News app is also home to over 20 million active users monthly in Africa, and more than 30 million worldwide.
.Crypto domains work similarly to .Eth (Ethereum) domain names. For example, Ethereum domain names, ENS, are already working and we can use them privately. This means if I share my Ethereum domain name, anyone can make a payment that will reach me. In addition, when you buy a .eth domain, there is no chance you will lose it.
For instance, a great deal of ETH supporters already use their name.eth domains to receive funds.
Some of the advantages that come with decentralized domains include:
- No censorship
- No middlemen like banks
- Decentralized networks are more robust
- Decentralized websites offer far better uptime
- Distributed domains reduce the risk of incidents like DDoS attacks
- Ability to publish where free speech is limited
- Ability to own and use a domain as a crypto address
- Ability to make micro crypto payments right within a website
According to Matthew Gould, CEO, Unstoppable Domains, the company behind the .crypto domain initiative:
“.Crypto is a domain name system meant to be used for any cryptocurrency payment and with any cryptocurrency wallet. Sending money to a .crypto domain is a way simpler user experience for the millions of cryptocurrency users that currently have to copy/paste and type in long addresses in order to transact.”
By adding the new decentralized domains, Opera has opened up the African continent to a slew of decentralized websites, products, and services that are stored on peer-to-peer networks, not cloud services. This makes it possible to conduct transactions without a middleman, as well as avoid censorship.
The development marks the first time a mainstream browser has integrated a domain that is not part and lives outside the incumbent system, the traditional domain name system (DNS).
In October 2019, Opera also became the first major browser that allows making payments with Bitcoin directly inside the browser.
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