Earlier this year, we were eagerly anticipating 10 DeFi projects to send tokens to early adopters, including: OpenSea, DeFi Saver, Instadapp, MetaMask, Zerion, Opyn, Zapper, Set, dYdX, ParaSwap. So far, 3 of these 10 projects have distributed their tokens and attracted thousands of dollars worth of digital assets.
In June, Instadapp was the first app on the list to send 11,000,000 INST to Maker DAO, Compound and Aave users on Ethereum and Polygon. Next, in August, the on-chain trading platform dYdX announced its own token, which will forfeit 7.5% of the total DYDX offering to its first-time users. Despite the public announcement that it was not planning any Airdrop plans, ParaSwap distributed 150 million PSPs to regular users in November.
Of the seven projects that are still issuing tokens to users this year, some of the tokens look promising. MetaMask has repeatedly indicated that an airdrop is about to be launched, but the terms of entry and the timing of the event are unclear. Other projects like Zapper and DeFi Saver are not yet active, but people are still eagerly waiting for an airdrop in the future.
Airdrops are not guaranteed as factors such as eligibility requirements are difficult to predict, especially after a number of Sybil attacks on the Airdrop were discovered earlier this year. However, previous records of the drop have shown that early participants in the project are likely to receive a well-deserved reward.
Here are the top 10 Ethereum-based projects likely to air in 2022.
zkSync is a Layer 2 scaling solution for Ethereum. It uses ZK rollup and is one of several Ethereum scaling projects. Early adopters can move ETH to the zkSync 1.0 mainnet, where they can shape NFTs or test dApps that are about to be launched in the network.
In order to qualify for a possible future airdrop, users can try to transfer ETH to the zkSync mainnet wallet and perform the swap on the UniSync test network.
zkSync has confirmed that they are planning to decentralize via a governance token, with many speculating that it will be distributed to early adopters via an airdrop.
StarkNet from StarkWare
Like zkSync, StarkNet is another scaling solution made with ZK Rollup. StarkWare, the company behind StarkNet, provides the technology to extend a number of existing DeFi and NFT protocols such as dYdX, DeversiFi, Sorare and Immutable X.
The StarkWare team was silent about launching an airdrop, but neither did they completely discard the idea. On the StarkWare Discord server, team members often respond to symbolic questions: “No comment”. One of StarkWare’s main initiatives is to decentralize StarkNet, and one of the most popular ways to do this is by issuing governance tokens.
Recently, StarkNet Alpha enabled developers to build apps on the network before releasing in 2022. In preparation, users can use the first StarkNet to download Argent, one of the compatible browser extension wallets, back to their computer.
Since StarkWare has put a lot of thought into it, it is believed that there will be a token and possibly an airdrop in the future.
New step for those who have switched from ETH to zkSync or StarkNet is supposed to do some transactions on ZigZag.
ZigZag is the first decentralized exchange based on zkSync and StarkNet Alpha. It is still in the early stages of development and only supports certain trading pairs, but it seems that ZigZag is getting off to a more remarkable start than the protocols introduced on Layer 2 solutions based on ZK rollup.
Rumor has it that early participants could receive an airdrop in the future when the exchange issues tokens.
To continue on the topic of Ethereum Layer 2 solutions, Arbitrum, an optimistic rollup, is the project most likely to be eligible for an airdrop.
That prediction started when Good Bridging, a popular token bridge for Avalanche, dropped 100% of the token offering to people who used the bridge to transfer funds. It is speculated that Arbitrum users can look forward to a similar airdrop in the future.
Ed Felten, the co-founder of the company behind Arbitrum, Offchain Labs, has publicly stated that he doesn’t believe there will be an arbitrum token. However, this still hasn’t stopped people’s speculation. There is evidence that someone attempted a Sybil attack for a future Arbitrum airdrop by sending a small amount of Ethereum from multiple wallets over the Arbitrum bridge.
Optimism is another Optimism rollup project that aims to scale Ethereum. As with Arbitrum, people are still speculating on an airdrop for people connecting to Optimistic Ethereum and interacting with DeFi applications. So far, Synthetix, Synapse, and Uniswap have all been deployed on Optimism; Users are not eligible to participate in the Airdrop when transacting through these protocols.
Although the Optimism team is still unresponsive, many are hoping for an airdrop of tokens for early entrants.
While Ethereum Layer 2 solutions are expected to implement airdrops, a bridge connecting them like the hop protocol also seems like a good candidate. Hop is a scalable rollup-to-rollup bridge that connects Ethereum with Arbitrum, Optimism, Polygon and xDai.
Rumor has it that the use of the hop protocol bridge, the provision of liquidity and the staking of tokens by the liquidity provider entitle users to participate in the future airdrop.
For those who wish to speculate on airdrops from Arbitrum and Optimism, by using Hop they may be eligible to participate in all 3 airdrops at the same time. Users can send tokens to Arbitrum and then hop to connect them to Optimism to save Ethereum gas fees.
In addition to Hop Protocol’s potential governance token, bridge users are also eligible to participate in other airdrops. Instrumental Finance recently announced an airdrop for those participating in cross-layer and cross-chain strategies from August 5th to November 25th, along with eligible Hop Protocol users.
Bored Ape Yacht Club
Starting with Ethereum’s Layer 2 solutions, the next project rumored to be airdropping is for owners of one of the most sought-after NFT collections: Bored Ape Yacht Club. The project’s Twitter account announced the token launch in October, stating that perhaps the first quarter of 2022 will be the time for the event.
It is still uncertain whether the owners of the Bored Ape Yacht Club will receive the token airdrop. But the likelihood of it happening is very high. For those who can’t afford Bored Ape’s high prices in the secondary market, they can join the Bored Ape Kennel Club and Mutant Ape Yacht Club side projects, which are also eligible to receive the upcoming airdrop.
CowSwap is the first decentralized exchange based on the Gnosis V2 protocol. It allows users to buy and sell tokens using zero gas orders, peer-to-peer payments, or any source of on-chain liquidity.
Airdrop rumors have been circulating on Twitter as well as the CowSwap and Gnosis communities for some time. A suggestion to improve the token of the protocol has also attracted attention in the Gnosis forum.
If CowSwap decides to use the token, Gnosis Protocol token holders may also be eligible for the Airdrop.
Clipper is another decentralized exchange that can be dropped off by air. This is a retailer exchange that specializes in token swaps under $ 10,000 to keep slippage down.
The Clipper airdrop is more speculative than most of the other projects on this list, but there are few signs of it. Aside from the fact that Clipper doesn’t have a token yet, it has announced that it will implement a DAO so that it could introduce tokens in the future to decentralize the protocol.
Using the exchange to trade or provide liquidity may qualify users for token rewards in the future. Those looking to avoid the high gas fees on Ethereum can swap on Polygon to potentially take part in this potential airdrop.
After the unexpected airdrop from Ethereum Name Service at the beginning of November, the question is whether other providers of blockchain domain names will take the same path.
Unstoppable domains offers “.crypto” domains on Ethereum and Polygon, similar to how ENS offers “.eth” domains on Ethereum. The protocol currently has no token, which makes it a top candidate in the list of projects that will airdrops in the future.
Unlike ENS, Unstoppable Domains only requires a one-time payment to buy a domain name with no renewal fees. Unstoppable domain owners are likely to be eligible for future Airdrop rewards if protocol decides to issue tokens.
In early 2021, DeFi protocols appear to be the most promising projects that the Airdrop can implement. As expected, the most profitable airdrops come mainly from DeFi projects on Ethereum.
Ethereum Layer 2 solutions and cross-chain bridges will be the trend until 2022. In addition to the names on this list, participating in additional Ethereum scaling solutions over the next year could be a great option to maximize your chances of getting to the Airdrop. Furthermore, researching other ecosystems like Cosmos, Avalanche and Solana besides Ethereum also has the potential to reward early adopters.
In addition to token rewards, learning about these emerging technologies is also a learning experience for everyone. While an early participant can offer good returns, there are risks associated with using protocols that are still in the early stages of development.