Bitcoin starts the week on the rise, with BTC price closing in on the $50,000 level.
What's your crypto genesis story? I was contacted by a recruiter for a major financial company asking if I wanted to come work with them on Ethereum. And I said, no, I really don't. But this Ethereum thing sounds interesting. And that got me started looking into it and playing with it. That was Ethereum name service founder Nick Johnson on how he fell into the Ethereum ecosystem. That interview in just a few minutes. Welcome to first mover on Coy desk. I'm Jen Sani on this show. You get your top news headlines. So exactly what's happening in the crypto industry this morning and interviews with industry heavy hitters. Let's get right into it and take a look at what's going on in the news this morning. Bitcoin is up over $49,000 today. That's as of around noon. We're up over 3% of the day on chain data provider. Crypto Quon says that prices for the largest Cryptocurrency by market cap could touch 100 and $12,000 this year. If the current trend of inflows related to spot ETF S continues. CEO Key young Z said on X quote, Bitcoin market has seen $9.5 billion in spot ETF inflows per month, potentially boosting the realized cap by 100 and $14 billion yearly and quote. He added that even with G BT C outflows, the realized cap could increase drastically moving on to another layer one. Now, Solana's second phone has received over 100,000 presales in just over a month. Solana Mobile's chapter two smartphone has secured $45 million for development. The phone like its predecessor will have custom features designed to integrate, buy, sell, hold and use cryptocurrencies on a co-founder Anatoli Yakovenko told Coindesk, it's really tough to beat Apple and Google on camera and the other tech specs adding that's why we really care about the crypto specific features. We're trying to build something that you can't get on another device. The company now plans to deliver units to customers in 2025. And Ripple owned crypto custody firm, Medicos CEO and head of product have left the company. A ripple spokesperson confirmed the news and said that custody remains integral to ripple's growing business. Let's talk all about domain names and web three because it just got a little bit easier to connect your web three domain with your web 21, God Daddy and the Ethereum name service also known as Ens recently announced a partnership that's going to make that a little bit easier. Joining us. Now is Ens founder Nick Johnson. Nick. Hey, what do you make of what's going on in the news this morning. Ah, well, I guess the one that caught my ear was the Solana phone. It seems like a great way to capitalize on your success. But I guess I'm a little bit skeptical that you need dedicated hardware for what's ultimately software innovations. So, it'll be interesting to see how that is greeted once it comes out. Well, Nick, this is the question I ask anyone who I have a conversation with about the sla a phone is, would you use a crypto specific phone? Like, is that enough to tear you away from one of the smartphones that you've probably been using for the last decade? I think it's a really tough sell. I have a difficult enough time finding a phone I'm happy with without adding the wrinkle of having to have a particular Blockchain associated with it. Me too. So I guess we'll just have to wait and see. But I know folks are really excited about those airdrops. So I guess that's what's driving momentum at the moment. But let's talk about your news uh for the uninitiated before we jump into the Ens and Go Daddy Partnership. Just briefly explain for our audience, what ens is for the service is the next E NA for web three. So we focus primarily initially on naming web three wallets for a variety of chains. But we also now support being effectively your web three profile. So you can bring your profile with you to different applications and depths and platforms and of course naming distributed content like IP Fs and Swan. When you say profile, what do you mean? Give us a practical example, pretty much everything you'd see when you go to your Twitter, sorry X profile or Facebook or anywhere else, your name, your profile picture, your header, image, short, bio, et cetera, all of those things that make you distinctly you and really we believe that those should be something that you own rather than being owned by the platform and something you should be able to bring with you. Do you have a ballpark figure for us how many folks have uh dot E name at the moment? Ah So as of right, this moment, it's about 1.7 million. It's been a little higher in the past. It's been a lot lower in the past. It varies. So what does this mean for those 1.7 million people? Ah So ens in general, it means that they no longer have to deal with cryptographic identifiers, big long hecs addresses every time they transact with their wallet or every time their friends want to send something to them instead they get an easy human readable name. And so if I were to come to you and say, hey, can you send me five E if you were being generous, I could just give you my dot E name and you would send that over to my wallet address. It wouldn't have all these complicated characters for me to send over that. I always get super stressed about when I'm copying and pasting that I've forgotten. Exactly. Right. And of course, uh, relevant here is that Ene isn't just dot E names. Uh, we support a lot more than that. Now, tell me about what this specifically means for the Godaddy Partnership, these 1.7 million people. what does this Godaddy partnership mean for them? Well, really, it affects a lot more than just those 1.7 million people because the Godaddy partnership is part of our ongoing drive to make DNS part of ENS. So DNS, the domain name service is foundational to the internet and is the way that it resolves your name.com into a website. And with this integration, it's now trivial for anyone with a Godaddy name to make that their ENS name as well. So on top of the 1.7 million people who have already on boarded, any of Godaddy's millions of customers can now simply enter a crypto address into their Godaddy interface and instantly be able to use their domain name as their identity on web three, paint a picture for me. What's the future that this is a step towards? Ideally, if we see Web three develop the way we want it to then your domain name, whether it be a name or a DNS traditional name becomes your identity on web three apps and therefore on the majority of the internet. So instead of being stuck with sign in with Twitter, sign in with Google, you can sign in with Ethereum and have all of your profile information come across with you. Is this a more secure way to do things than they're being done? Now, I would say it's equivalent in security to things like a war, but much better in terms of privacy and control of your own data. So as with anything, the system is as secure as you keep your credentials, the difference is you're no longer also trusting Google or Facebook or Apple to custody those credentials for you. Tell me a little bit more about that privacy piece. Ah Well, I think a lot of people are concerned about the implications of handing over their whole digital lives to major corporations, particularly given how few of them there are and how much of the internet they now effectively control or mediate. And one of our goals with the web three platform with ens with sign in with Ethereum with our new integrations is that you should be in control of all of that data and hand it out to those you want to and also that you shouldn't be beholden to those platforms for your profile's continued existence. We see a lot of cases where a simple machine error results in someone's Google account being deleted and now suddenly your entire identity goes away with a little way to appeal. Tell me about how the partnership came about. Did you approach God daddy? Did Godaddy approach Ens and yeah, tell me about the initial conversations there. We've had connections in both directions over the years, but it really started with one of our team at a conference, getting in touch with a God Daddy representative there chatting, had a great conversation and just keeping that contact up in both directions until its eventuated with what you see today. Well, that's a conference success story. If I've ever heard one, I've been to enough conferences where the momentum starts, but then very quickly fizzles after that conference is done. I feel the same way. I'm, I'm super impressed with that all worked out. And so it's, it's interesting when we talk about web two brands, especially web two brands that have built their brand on the internet. Uh You know, we often hear stories about the reluctance to Web three and sometimes about the acceptance. It sounds like Godaddy was, was um you know, really is, is really adopting the technology with welcoming arms. I think so. Yeah, they've been very interested in pursuing these not directly financial use cases and doing what we believe in which is building a better internet in a much broader sense than just purely focusing on finance. I want to broaden the conversation out a little bit. Now you've been operating in the Ethereum ecosystem for quite a while. Um and there's some big developments coming up for Ethereum this year. We're sitting in February 2024. What are you most excited about for Ethereum this year? Ah, I think the two big upgrades that we know are coming are blob space which will be better, more efficient LT two systems and also support for temporary storage which will enable more efficient smart contracts. And the latter is more esoteric, I guess, but given my interest in development on Ethereum and so on, that's probably the one that excites me more. I understand the value and the benefits that blob space brings and that having more efficient roll ups will bring. But I always get more excited about new functionality. Unlocks, tell us a little bit more about that. What will that unlock for users of the Ethereum ecosystem effectively? It doesn't necessarily enable things that weren't possible before, but it makes them a lot more efficient. So there are lots of cases where with increasing complexity of smart contract interactions, you are contacting the same smart contract multiple times in a single transaction. And right now that can incur a lot of additional costs that aren't really necessary and that aren't sort of reflective of the actual cost of the Ethereum platform to execute your transaction. With this, those sort of complex nested transactions should get a lot cheaper. And Nick, the last time we spoke about ens on this show, uh we were talking about a legal battle with unstoppable domains. Any update there? Uh not writers of this moment. No. All right, we are going to wrap the conversation up there. Nick. Thanks so much for joining the show. My great pleasure. Thank you. That was Ens founder Nick Johnson. Speaking of Ethereum, let's take a look at the chart of the day. The chart of the day is presented by crypto.com, the leading crypto platform trusted by over 80 million users worldwide. Ethereum validator entry Q signals a renewed interest in staking the validator entry queue jumped to 7045 making the waitlist the longest since October 6th. According to data source validator Q, the waitlist that represents 225,000 ether or $562 million is expected to clear in just over 48 hours. Validators are entities that stake a minimum of 32 ether in the network to participate in Ethereum proof of stake consensus Blockchain. In exchange for staking, they receive a steady rate of return similar to interest income from fixed income instruments like bonds. While the number of stakers looking to join the network has spiked. The tally remains well below the figures over 75,000 seen following Ethereum Chappelle upgrade in April last year. The yield on staked ether remains below 4%. That's rap four first mover on a Monday. Thank you so much for watching and thank you to our guest, Nick Johnson as a note, we sometimes interviews on this show for clarity and length as you know, we are on a journey to make this show the best show that it can possibly be if you have feedback for me or the team, send that to me in AD M on X and we'll be sure to implement it, get all of your news headlines on coindesk.com and we'll see you tomorrow. You're watching First Mover and I'm Jen Sei.