Polygon (MATIC) had a huge 2022 and it is continuing its run in 2023. Companies like Stripe, Instagram, and Reddit have announced their collaboration with Polygon and use their network for payments and non-fungible token (NFT) minting and marketplaces. As a Layer-2 blockchain built on top of Ethereum, Polygon is a scaling solution that allows for fast transactions with cheap costs, making it ideal for businesses looking to get into the NFT market.
The big thing coming for Polygon in 2023 is their zkEVM (zero-knowledge Ethereum Virtual Machine), which has a beta mainnet set to launch on March 27, 2023. If implemented successfully the zkEVM will dramatically increase transaction speeds and reduce costs for the base Ethereum layer. This is just one of the reasons why businesses are choosing Polygon over other options. Before we dive into more reasons and more of the major brands that are working with Polygon, let’s quickly discuss what Polygon is.
What is Polygon (MATIC)?
Polygon (MATIC), formerly known as Matic Network, is a layer 2 blockchain network built on top of Ethereum. This means Polygon is an ERC-20 token and that it has the same security as the Ethereum blockchain, which is strong. Polygon aims to be Ethereum’s Internet of Blockchains, much like Cosmos (ATOM) with their Inter-Blockchain Communication (IBC) protocol, or Polkadot (DOT) with parachains.
Transactions on Polygon take place on child chains, keeping the majority of traffic off of the Ethereum parent chain. This results in faster and cheaper transactions on the Polygon network than on Ethereum. This will be furthered when the zkEVM upgrade is running.
The zkEVM upgrade recently finished its public testnet and source code proves it’s producing ZK proofs, meaning it’s working as intended. When the beta mainnet is implemented at the end of March, Polygon’s zkEVM platform will be able to handle 2,000 transactions per second (TPS), which is a big step up from the current 30 TPS on Ethereum’s mainnet. While Polygon originally planned to be a scaling solution for more than one blockchain, they shifted towards focusing on Ethereum only when they rebranded from Matic, and that is working out very well for them.
Why Are Brands Choosing Polygon?
Polygon has quite a few advantages over its parent chain Ethereum, which are the main reasons why brands are choosing to build on Polygon rather than Ethereum. One of these advantages is the faster transaction speeds that are also at a lower cost than on Ethereum. This makes it an excellent alternative to Ethereum for doing things such as mint NFTs, send payments, and have NFT marketplaces.
Polygon is also an attractive chain to use for decentralized finance applications. Platforms such as AAVE and Uniswap work on both Polygon and Ethereum layers, but transactions on the Polygon layer are much cheaper than on Ethereum. Along with all of the increased speed and cheaper costs, Polygon also harnesses the security of the Ethereum base layer, meaning there is no sacrifice of security for speed and affordability.
Brands That Are Working With Polygon
The security of Ethereum’s base layer in conjunction with the speeds offered by Polygon have led the below major brands to work with Polygon rather than other networks such as Cardano (ADA) or Solana (SOL). For each brand mentioned, we’ll quickly note what they’re doing with Polygon.
DraftKings is one of the most popular fantasy sports companies in the US. Draftkings offers gambling services like casinos, betting, and daily fantasy sports. Polygon Technology has partnered with DraftKings to build a blockchain-powered NFT marketplace for them. Draftkings aims to extend its public outreach with this step in virtual space. Since most NFT pundits are young and tech-savvy, Draftkings is hoping to continue to draw in new customers by working with Polygon.
Adobe, one of the premier software developers in the world also has a separate platform, called Behance. Behance launched in 2005 as a platform for developers, creators, and artists to showcase their talent to potential collaborators and fans worldwide. The Behance platform currently has a huge active user base of 10 million.
Adobe wants to push forward Behance as an NFT marketplace to transition its presence for NFT artists and creators. The collaboration between Polygon and Adobe allows these artists and creators to mint and list their NFTs Polygon. Adobe is also looking to expand their customer reach with this move.
National Football League (NFL)
In 2021, the NFL announced it will be using Polygon to pair tickets purchased at select games with “Virtual Commemorative Tickets” which will be sent as NFTs to eligible Ticketmaster wallets.
The league released its first batch of commemorative NFTs through Ticketmaster and Polygon in 2021, which included 125 different collectibles for each of the league’s 32 teams. Much like Adobe and DraftKings, the NFL is trying to expand their consumer base.
Liverpool FC (LFC) of the English Premier League have partnered with Polygon to create an NFT marketplace where fans can trade NFTs from the Liverpool NFT collections. Owning an NFT from these collections will give fans exclusive access to an LFC community forum, NFT holder-only experiences, virtual hang-outs, competitions, LFC merchandise discounts, and more. Proceeds from NFT sales will go towards the LFC Foundation, a charity organization working to make a change and deliver long-term change for communities.
Starbucks has announced that Polygon (MATIC) will be the blockchain that their Odyssey loyalty program will use. Members will also be able to purchase ‘limited-edition stamps’ (NFTs) through a built-in marketplace within the Odyssey app. These limited-edition stamps can be purchased by members directly with a credit card. No crypto wallet or cryptocurrency will be required, and overall, there will be little awareness that blockchain is even involved, in order to keep it simple for customers.
Starbucks’ NFT stamps will include a point value based on rarity. The stamps will be able to be bought or sold among members within an NFT marketplace, with ownership secured with blockchain. Collecting stamps increases a members’ points, which unlocks unique benefits and experiences for customers.
Nike is working with Polygon for their .SWOOSH platform. Nike says .SWOOSH will be a resource for Web3 education along with being a platform where users can buy and trade digital collectibles, such as virtual sneakers or apparel. These items will be able to be worn in video games and other immersive experiences when those developments are finished.
In addition, .SWOOSH will allow you to create your own collections on the platform, from which you can earn royalties.
The Walt Disney Company
Disney launched its Accelerator program to promote research and development on NFT experiences, artificial reality (AR), and artificial intelligence (AI) development. Polygon, along with 5 other blockchain companies, will join forces and assist Disney with the program as it develops.
Meta, the company behind popular social media applications such as Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, announced in November 2022 that it would offer NFT trading on Instagram. The NFT program has already been launched to select creators and influencers on Polygon.
Polygon’s collaboration with Meta further established Polygon’s image as a go-to blockchain brand for traditional businesses looking to get into NFTs and related blockchain use cases.
Stripe, one of the most common point of sale companies used by small businesses, plans to scale its payments to optimum security by using Polygon. The brand wants to test USD Coin (USDC) payments to Twitter creators via the Polygon blockchain. It will allow Twitter creators to cash out tips and/or payments they receive on Twitter using USDC on Polygon.
Reddit joined forces with Polygon to empower its Reddit Avatar NFT marketplace. The Collectible Avatar NFTs are stored and managed on Reddit’s own cryptocurrency wallet, called Vault. The program allows users to earn blockchain-based community points and spend them on in-app features like badges. The NFTs are made available to users of the platform based on their activity.