What is Basic Attention Token (BAT)?
Basic Attention Token (BAT) refers to a blockchain-based digital ads platform that focuses on improving the efficiency of digital advertising, at the same time blocking trackers and malvertisements. It basically betters the manner in which advertisers, publishers, as well as users communicate. Essentially, publishers and users are paid by advertisers for their services and attention respectively using the BAT tokens.
The BAT project was the first transparent, efficient, and decentralized digital advertisement platform to be developed on the blockchain. What’s more, the project’s development team has a solid background. The platform boasts a vast network of publishers, advertisers, and users, and is working towards expanding collaborations. The project’s token economy is good and it has a live ecosystem, giving it a competitive advantage in the market. However, its major drawback is that it presently depends on Ethereum’s throughput capacity. Consequently, this implies that as the no. of transactions on the platform’s network increase, the load on the Ethereum network will as well increase. As such, upon attaining the peak, it will be strenuous for the Ethereum network to process the large no. of transactions, slowing down the BAT network as well.
The project’s other major drawback is a well-expressed power centralization which minimizes its attractiveness. Combined, these 2 drawbacks are likely to result to a more sluggish expansion of the project in the long-term.
On the whole, in the short-term, the BAT project has appreciable chances to continue being a major player in the realm of digital advertising. Nonetheless, resolving the afore-mentioned drawbacks is key, contrary to which it will lose its competitive advantage in the marketplace in the long run.
BAT’s Underlying Technology
BAT is a blockchain-based advertisement network that runs on the Ethereum network. It is a project of its own kind in the blockchain realm in so far as technology goes, owing to the fact that it is the only blockchain-based project to build a digital ad platform inside its own browser.
The platform has scalability prospects similar to its competitors’, except for its incorporation of the DATA project which is more solid technologically. Be that as it may, the project’s team is spirited to further develop its product, as per its GitHub activity which depicts the team’s confidence in the project’s future.
BAT’s underlying technology comprises of 3 major components namely:
- The Brave Browser
- The BAT Token
- Basic Attention Metrics
Brave is a fast, open-source browser focused on user privacy. Consequently, it blocks trackers and malvertisements (ads that install malware), heightening its speed. As such, it loads web pages 2 to 8 times faster as compared to Chrome or Safari on mobile devices and 2x faster than Google Chrome on the desktop. This as a result makes it one of the fastest amongst its rivals. It comprises of a ledger system that anonymously quantifies the user’s attention in a bid to amply recompense publishers.
How does BAT Work?
The BAT platform comprises of advertisers, publishers, and users who visit the Brave web browser with their minds particularly fixated on the BAT tokens.
Here’s an overview of how the platform works:
Publishers upload the content they have created, after which advertisers get in touch with them with an offer of a certain amount of BAT tokens. They then agree on this offer based on the quantified user attention. Users are, as a result, rewarded a certain amount of the BAT tokens for their participation. Thus far, on the platform, users have 2 options regarding how to use their BAT tokens – they could either give them out as donations or use them for carrying out various transactions on the platform.
The basic logic in this case is simple: BAT tokens keep the entirety of users’ data secure and private, while concurrently providing more particular, personalized adverts. Most noteworthy, this is solely from the user’s end.
Publishers gain from the BAT tokens in the sense that they encounter a significantly lesser number of scams while in the process maximizing their potential reward. Advertisers, resultantly, in addition to receiving much better and accurate reports, also receive improved levels of performance.
The BAT ICO (Initial Coin Offering)
The coin’s ICO took place on the 31st of May, 2017. Within less than thirty seconds, the token raised just about $35,000,000 USD. This undoubtedly indicates that the ICO was an utmost success during execution.
Other than the above-mentioned amount, the organization also received $7,000,000 USD as investment for a number of venture capital organizations.
The tokens’ total supply was 1.5 billion BATs, a third of which ultimately found its way back to the project’s development team. The reserved amount is used by the team to further develop the project. What’s more, the primary objective in this case regards increasing and motivating continual user growth.
BAT Market Opportunities
The BAT project team presupposes that digital advertising doesn’t work efficiently and they have various reasons for this presupposition. For example, more than 600 million desktop and mobile devices run ad-blocking due to the large number of advertisements on the network. In addition, the ad quality is bound to being questionable and even hazardous to these devices. What’s more, advertising not only curtails the devices’ speed but erodes the battery life of mobile devices as well.
With these flaws, not only will there be a situation where users are unhappy with the product, but advertisers and publishers will as well lose confidence in the platform due to unsatisfaction. Particularly, publishers will as a result lose their profits while advertisers will have low efficiency of targeted advertising.
The market’s key contenders include Facebook and Google, which make up for roughly 40 percent of the entire market. As of 2018, the digital advertising market size came to $266 billion USD, and is anticipated to score $518 billion USD by 2023. Digital advertising comprises of a variety of types including: classifieds, social media advertising, banner, search, and video.
Owing to the fact that it resolves the above-mentioned flaws, regardless of the competition it faces from these 2 giants (Facebook and Google), the BAT project can come by a niche.
As an ERC20 token built atop Ethereum, the BAT token is utilized as an entity of exchange in an open-source, effective, and decentralized blockchain-based digital ad platform.
Upon the completion of its platform’s development, BAT will begin rewarding its participants as follows:
- Publishers will receive 70 percent of the advertising revenue.
- Users will be recompensed 15 percent of this revenue for the attention accorded to viewing advertisements.
- The remaining 15 percent will go to Brave.
Transaction fees, paid in GAS, motivate Ethereum miners to mine and verify pertinent transactions. The transaction fees’ size is reliant on the Ethereum network. A typical scenario is as well witnessed amongst the project’s rivals with the exception of DATA and Steem. Whilst Steem does not charge transaction fees, DATA’s gas fee will be the same as that of the Ethereum ecosystem.
On the whole, BAT’s transaction fees are contingent on the Ethereum network’s workload. This as a result implies that transaction costs on the BAT platform are bound to be more than the transaction’s real value.
BAT can be traded on quite a number of the renowned cryptocurrency exchanges.
To catalyze the BAT ecosystem’s development, the team looks forward to providing various use cases of the BAT token. In this regard, the platform will provide its users with additional options regarding the utilization of the BAT token. In so far as the first option goes, BAT will motivate publishers for placing adverts and users for their attention. Further, the team intends to widen the scope of the coin’s use. As such, other than being able to earn rewards as well as give them in form of donations to publishers, they will as well be provided with additional services including:
- Premium content subscriptions
- High quality digital content
- Comment rankings utilizing the BAT tokens
- Ability to buy such digital products as HD photos, data services, or publisher apps which are only required on a 1-time basis, all these using the BAT tokens within the Brave ecosystem
Generally, BAT services are intended to surpass the boundaries of digital advertising and consequently allure more users. The organization conducted the ICO Token Sale on the 31st of May, 2017 and garnered $35,000,000 USD in a meagre thirty seconds. The project as well received an additional $7 million USD from various venture capital organizations, including, among others, Pantera Capital and the Digital Currency Group.
The token was distributed as follows:
- Token Sale Tokens: 1 billion.
- User Growth Pool: 300 million.
- The project’s Development Pool: 200 million.
20 percent of the entirety of the project’s tokens were dedicated to encouraging and motivating the platform’s development. This depicts how spirited the team is to successfully launch the project.
All-inclusive, the User Growth Pool is meant to incentivize users for their usage of the platform. By simply installing the Brave browser, the user is rewarded 35 BAT which, nevertheless, can solely be used in the platform. On the assumption that the user fails to use these tokens within six months, they will be reallocated to the User Growth Pool and is likely to be accrued by yet another new user on the platform. Active users can as well be rewarded tokens from this pool by updating the app or verifying their cell phone details. Significantly, upon using the entirety of the tokens from the pool, the organization has no intention of issuing new ones. The team aspires to leverage all other financial resources to develop and market the product, run its operations, as well as to meet other pertinent expenses.
- BAT Development:
58% of the organization’s funds have been set aside for the development of the existent Brave browser technology.
7% will cater for unanticipated expenses.
The organization has allocated 12% of the funds to increase the awareness as well as the adoption of their browser (Brave browser) and the BAT solution amongst the intended audience, for the BAT community’s growth.
13% was allocated to 3rd-party providers for, among other purposes, engineering, marketing, and Public Relations.
In so far as administration is concerned, 10% has been allocated to cater for, just to mention but a few, accounting, legal, and security expenses.
Most noteworthy is the fact that the organization issued a predetermined amount of BAT tokens. This basically means that the project’s economy is inherently deflationary, insinuating that as the project’s community expands, its token value appreciates as well. Nevertheless, in light of the fact that its rivals also implemented the deflationary economic model, it is ruled out as a competitive advantage over its competitors.
BAT User Growth
After concluding their ICO, the next major step entailed dealing with the user growth issue. The organization distributed 300,000 BATs towards the end of 2017 which were majorly meant to be awarded to freshly registered users on the platform. Beyond that, the organization organized, among others, referral programs and giveaways.
Recollecting, such business moves were, as a matter of fact, a huge success. The new user pool grew swiftly, just as it continues to, and at the moment users even visit the platform, not with any particular financial motive, but just for sheer delight and enthusiasm for the BAT tokens.
The BAT Wallet
BAT wallets are rather particular – they are referred to as Brave wallets and are hosted on the Brave browser. These wallets are basically used for purposes of holding BAT tokens as well as carrying out transactions on the BAT platform.
Creating a Brave wallet is rather straightforward. Firstly, open your Brave browser and from the home page, head over to the Preferences tab and click it. Alternatively, you can achieve this by simply typing: “about:preferences” in the address bar.
Having done that, on the preferences page, you have to toggle the payments button to set its status to “ON.” You can achieve this by choosing the Payments option on the left hand-side panel. This could take a few moments after which you are good to go. You just created your first Brave wallet!
If already you possess some crypto coins, you are now in a position to hold them in your newly created Brave Wallet. Consequently, all that is required of you to do is selecting the crypto coin you wish to store in your wallet, copy its address, and carry out a transaction. This is bound to take a few moments, and then, Hooray!! You have just funded your Brave Wallet.
In light of the fact that BAT tokens are based on the Ethereum network, transactions are bound to be significantly speedier, particularly in comparison to other digital currencies.
It is as well possible to hold in other crypto currency wallets for as long as the wallets in question support Ethereum-based transactions.
As earlier mentioned, the BAT token has a vast spectrum in so far as use cases go, making it very captivating to all sorts of users. Consequently, below is a brief overview regarding how beneficial the BAT project is to various categories of users on the Brave platform:
- Benefits to Advertisers:
Advertisers receive incentives for integrating the BAT tokens to their list of advertisements. By so doing, they are granted an ability, only unique to them, to receive very particular data as well as a variety of other analytics. BAT utilizes a variety of mechanisms, for instance, attention measurement systems as well as machine learning-based algorithms, just to mention but a few, to harness as much precise and discrete data as conceivable. As such, advertisers have a one-of-its-own opportunity to receive objective data regarding the performance of their specific adverts. Resultantly, they are in a position to come up with further personalized, user-friendly ads in times to come.
- Benefits to Users:
The BAT platform engages users in a “give-to-receive” sort of interaction model. Simply put, by viewing ads on the Brave platform, users are recompensed a particular amount of BAT tokens. As a user, you could either choose to use these assets as a form payment for various services or give them back to publishers as donations.
- Benefits to Publishers:
A publisher’s compensation is drawn from both the users and the advertisers. This as a result contrives a large incentive to additionally broaden the publishing platforms for advertisers. Publishers are as well in a position to receive feedback from the users, enabling them to point out the ads (even the advertisers) they wish to display on their platforms and work alongside. Among the more renowned publishers that accept transactions in BAT tokens on their platforms include, Vice, The Washington Post, and Vimeo.
The Project’s Lead Team
The BAT project comprises of a team of over 70 individuals. Notably, the team comprises of vastly experienced software developers, a QA team, a machine learning team, and among others, security engineers. Inclusive of a vastly experienced and solid technical staff is a team of highly skilled marketers, product developers, and a team that works on communication with the community. Below is a brief overview of the backgrounds of some of the members who comprise the organization’s lead team.
- Brian Bondy – is the organization’s Co-Founder and Chief Technical Officer. Bondy graduated with a Bachelor of Art in Computer Science from the University of Waterloo. He has over 20 years of experience in Software Engineering. In Jan 2010, he founded VisionWorks Solutions and worked there till the end of the year. Significantly, VisionWorks Solutions is renowned for its development of some backup software that was sold globally. What’s more, he has worked for such organizations as, among others, KineticD, the Mozilla Corporation, and Khan Academy.
- Holi Bohren – is Brave Software’s Chief Financial Officer. She is a Bachelor of Art in Economics graduate from the University of Michigan and finished Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a Master in Business Administration in Finance. She initially worked as a Financial Consultant for almost five years after which she solely held positions as a Chief Financial Officer since the year 2002. She has worked for such organizations as Teachscape, and BiteSize Networks. At the moment, she works as a Chief Financial Officer and Consultant at Armanino LLP and Venture Backed Technology Companies. Overall, Holi boasts over twenty years’ financial experience.
- David Temkin – is the organization’s CPO. He graduated with a Bachelor of Art in Computer Science from the Brown University. He is a product development leader renowned for designing a variety of products, including Excite@Home, Cola, Apple, AOL, et cetera, used by millions of people from around the globe.
In their endeavors to heighten accountability and transparency, the team regularly publishes the entirety of its updates and accomplishments on blogs and the GitHub platform.
Brendan Eich came up with the BAT project with the sterling motive to minimize and put an end to notable online fraudulent activities and scams. These drawbacks were, and still are, salient issues to be addressed by the digital ads industry. The BAT project was brought about to be one of the possible solutions to these flaws.
Be that as it may, it’s worth emphasizing that the BAT project has really come a long way. It commenced with an enchanting idea, lead development, joining forces with the Brave Software team. As time passed by, the project’s development process resulted to the BAT ICO, incorporation of the BAT tokens into the Brave web browser, and finally the contrivance of the Brave Wallet. Most significantly, it has thus far brought about a steady increase in the user pool.
The digital currency’s all-time mobility gives it an upper hand to steadily grow and advance its development. The project’s development team is working around the clock to optimize its token’s usages. Their current objective is to push it up and make it a lot more vastly available.
With an appreciable pay-to-surf business model at the helm of the organization’s operations, the BAT project has so far secured its position as an astounding tool of digital marketing and interaction. Without doubt, it will be fascinating to see what this digital era’s future holds for the project.