NFTs Get a New Place to Live, With Ripple Aiming for Mass Adoption

XRPL from Ripple Labs now supports NFTs. The company wants to accelerate the mass adoption of tokenization, or representing real-world assets on a blockchain.

AccessTimeIconNov 1, 2022 at 9:29 p.m. UTC
Updated Nov 1, 2022 at 9:41 p.m. UTC

Cam Thompson is a news reporter at CoinDesk.

Ripple Labs, whose XRP token is the world's sixth-largest cryptocurrency by market cap, has gotten into non-fungible tokens (NFT).

As of Oct. 31, the blockchain supports NFTs (through a standard Ripple calls XLS-20) after a vote approved rolling out the technology. The move comes after Ripple a year ago created a $250 million fund to explore NFT innovation on its XRPL blockchain.

David Schwartz, chief technology officer of Ripple Labs, told CoinDesk in an interview this week that the goal is to enable mass adoption of tokenization – representing ownership of real-world things through NFTs – by offering lower costs, higher speeds and improved security over existing blockchains. Ethereum is among the incumbents.

“You're going to see projects based on things like carbon credits and real estate ownership and all these different use cases,” he said in an interview. “Anything that you can own all or some of that is unique, that can be represented by an NFT.“

Ripple is entering the NFT space at a time when royalties for digital creators are in the spotlight. Prominent marketplaces including X2Y2, Magic Eden, and LooksRare have made royalties optional, which has attracted scorn from some.

Doing so can limit creators' ability to profit off of their work. Ripple's initiative aims to mitigate that by allowing artists to integrate their royalties on-chain.

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Cam Thompson is a news reporter at CoinDesk.

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Cam Thompson is a news reporter at CoinDesk.