NFTs are Nothing New: A Look Back at Binance NFTs From 2019 And What’s Hot Now


The crypto boom of recent months has created more wealth opportunities for people, including artists. Crypto assets called NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, have become popular, with trades going into the millions of dollars.

Recently, one such NFT called EVERYDAYS by crypto artist Beeple was sold at a Christie’s auction for a record $69 million dollars. The NBA created a popular virtual trading card market called NBA Top Shot, where video highlights sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars.

More artists and influencers, including the likes of Grimes, Lindsay Lohan, and Steve Aoki, have launched their own NFTS. Even tech titans are getting in on the action, with Twitter’s Jack Dorsey selling an NFT of his first tweet for $2.5 million and Tesla CEO (and Grimes’ boyfriend) Elon Musk even played around with selling an NFT of his song about NFTs before backing out at the last minute.

However, while NFTs are having their moment this year, the origins of this new crypto asset class can be traced to the previous crypto boom in 2017, with Binance playing a role in the adoption of NFTs more than a year before they became popular today.

What is an NFT, and How is it Useful?

According to Binance Academy, an NFT is a type of cryptographic token on a blockchain that represents a unique asset. How is this different from the typical crypto we know? One Bitcoin can be interchanged with another without issues, just like money. But with an NFT, each token has a unique identifier that makes it different from other units, making it useful for assets such as proof of authenticity and ownership within the digital realm.

When applied, NFTs can be used by artists and other people to issue and sell unique digital items and collectibles, with blockchain technology confirming each item’s uniqueness. This is the kind of use case that has become popular in recent weeks, and with platforms for making NFTs, but the technology can be used for other possibilities, like gaming assets and tokenization of real-world assets like fine art, real estate, and rare collectible items.

“I’m seeing people who don’t know anything about crypto adopt or try to buy an NFT first. So it’s kind of like a gateway to crypto,” Binance X Director Teck Chia said in a recent Clubhouse session about the technology. 

NFT Origins: CryptoKitties and Binance NFTs

The current explosion in the popularity of NFTs is reminiscent of the rise of an Ethereum-based game called CryptoKitties. Launched in late 2017 in the middle of the previous crypto bull run, CryptoKitties are virtual cats that users can collect, breed, and exchange using the Ethereum network. It has been cited as a major factor in the Ethereum blockchain’s congestion problem at the time. While CryptoKitties proved to be a short-term fad, it planted the seeds to further adoption of NFT technology.

Binance also adopted NFTs as early as 2019, as special gift giveaways to members of the crypto community. These NFTs are given away during special occasions like Christmas, Lunar New Year, and Binance’s anniversary. The most valuable of these NFTs, EXCHANGE THE WORLD 2019, is currently selling for $236,419.20 on NFT platform Enjin and about $54,000 on NFT marketplace OpenSea. This highlights the additional value that Binance brings to its followers, even beyond trading benefits. 

To date, Binance has launched several NFT campaigns, such as:

In a recent AMA, CZ expressed his support for the rise of NFTs. “When artists can better monetize that work, they basically are going to be paid better, and they can do more good work. So I think we'll see a lot more art, and the art industry is going to benefit from crypto,” CZ said.

Where to Get NFTs

Within the Binance ecosystem, there are two main methods for interacting with NFTs: Trust Wallet and BNB Smart Chain (BSC). 

As the world’s leading crypto wallet app, Trust Wallet provides users with an easy and secure way to keep their NFTs and crypto collectibles. This includes unique ERC721 and ERC1155 tokens, all storable within the app’s new collectibles section, as well as BSC-based NFTs: BEP-721 and BEP-1155 tokens.

All you have to do to buy your first NFT is add BNB to your Trust wallet, then access the Trust Wallet DApp Browser to explore NFT marketplaces like Bakeryswap’s NFT Supermarket. Once you explore your preferred NFT dApp and see an NFT you like, it only takes a few clicks to buy that NFT and store it in your wallet.

Speaking of Bakeryswap, which is one of the leading dApps on BSC at the moment, we have seen a great increase in NFT activity on the Binance-branded and community-built BSC. More BSC projects have started offering NFTs, while reaping the same benefits that users gain with BSC, such as speed, low fees, and reliability. Other NFT marketplaces you can explore include PancakeSwap, JuggerWORLD, and DEGO’s Treasureland. NFT use on BSC spans use cases like art, gaming, and DeFi-related activities, with more to come as more projects join BSC.

Check out our deep read on NFTs for more information:

Guide to Crypto Collectibles and NFTs from Academy.