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Types of DeFi Applications: From Lending and Borrowing to Yield Farming

Updated: Dec 1, 2023



Welcome back to the second instalment of our 12-part blog series on the world of Decentralized Finance (DeFi)! If you're just joining us, you can catch up by reading Post 0: Exploring the Future of Finance and Post 1: Introduction to DeFi: Changing Finance for the Better.


So, you've heard about Bitcoin and Ethereum, but ever wondered what else is lurking in the finance world? Imagine a world where getting a loan doesn't require sitting nervously in a bank waiting room or going through intrusive credit checks. Or, how about growing your savings without being locked into a traditional high-street bank's measly interest rates?


Welcome to DeFi—a swiftly expanding ecosystem of financial applications built on blockchain technology. It is as fascinating as it is complex. Imagine a financial playground where you're not only the player but also the referee. No more asking permission from banks, no more standing in long queues, and definitely no more exorbitant fees for basic services.


Types of DeFi Applications


Decentralized Exchanges (DEXs)

Think of Decentralized Exchanges or DEXs as your local farmer's market but for digital currencies. Instead of going to a corporate supermarket (centralized exchange), you're directly exchanging goods (currencies like Bitcoin or Ethereum) with other people. There's no middleman taking a cut or dictating terms. It's just you and your trading partner, making it secure and private.


Example: Let's say Alice wants to swap her Bitcoin for Ethereum. On a DEX like Uniswap, she can directly trade with Bob who wants to do the opposite. No third party is involved.


Lending and Borrowing Platforms

Ever thought, "I wish I could earn some interest on this digital cash lying around?" or "I need a loan but don't want to go through tedious paperwork and credit checks." Well, DeFi's lending and borrowing platforms make both possible. You can lend your digital assets and earn interest or borrow by providing some of your assets as collateral. No middlemen, no credit checks.


Example: On platforms like Aave or Compound, Sarah can lend her Ethereum and earn interest over time. Meanwhile, Tom can borrow Ethereum by providing his stablecoins as collateral.


Stablecoins

Picture a cryptocurrency that doesn't have mood swings. They are tied to stable assets like the US dollar, meaning one stablecoin will almost always be equal to one US dollar, making them a safe haven in the volatile DeFi universe.


Example: Tether (USDT) is a stablecoin pegged to the US Dollar. If you're worried about the value of your Ethereum plummeting, you could convert it to Tether.


Tokenization

Tokenization is the art of turning real-world assets like property, art, or even a portion of your time into a digital token. This could potentially make illiquid assets liquid and enable fractional ownership.


Example: Through tokenization, a Van Gogh painting valued at $50 million could be divided into 50 million tokens, and you could own a piece by purchasing some of these tokens.


Derivatives Platforms

Derivatives allow you to bet on the future without committing entirely to it. These platforms let you create contracts that will pay you based on future price movements of assets, like cryptocurrencies or commodities. It's a way to speculate or hedge your bets.


Example: If you think the price of Bitcoin will go up in three months, you could enter a derivative contract that pays you if you are right.


Yield Farming Aggregators

Yield Farming is the DeFi way to put your assets to work. Think of it like farming, but instead of growing vegetables, you're 'growing' more digital assets. Yield Farming Aggregators make the job easier by automatically finding the best 'fields' to plant your assets in, aiming to give you the best returns.


Example: If you have Ethereum, you could use a Yield Farming Aggregator like Yearn.finance to automatically find the best DeFi protocols to earn interest on your Ethereum.


Payment and Insurance Protocols

Payment protocols simplify transactions between parties, making it easier to pay for services and goods. Insurance protocols protect you against the risks associated with DeFi platforms, such as a bug causing a loss of funds.


Example: If you're using a DeFi service that's insured by Nexus Mutual and something goes wrong, you can claim insurance.


Why Use DeFi?


The benefits are pretty straightforward:


  • Transparency: It's like an open book; everything is recorded on a public ledger.

  • Security: Being decentralized, it's often more secure than your average bank.

  • Accessibility: Got internet? You can use DeFi.


But, remember, while the field is fertile with opportunities, it's also rife with risks. Always do your homework, use trusted platforms, and perhaps start small.


Tips for a Smooth DeFi Journey

The DeFi landscape offers a host of advantages over traditional financial services, promising an exciting frontier for financial exploration and innovation.


  • Do Your Research: Make sure you understand the app you're using.

  • Use a Reputable Wallet: A good wallet is your first line of defence.

  • Start Small: This is new terrain, so start with an amount you're comfortable losing as you learn.

  • Be Patient: Learn as much as you can before making any large investments.


What's Next?

In the next blog post of this series, we'll explore the mesmerising world of yield generation and synthetics in DeFi. Curious about how you can make your money work for you, literally overnight? Stay tuned for [Post 3: Unlocking Financial Freedom: Yield Generation and Synthetics in DeFi](#).


DeFi is much more than a financial revolution; it's a lifestyle choice that promotes financial freedom and inclusion. Whether you are a finance guru or someone just dipping their toes into the financial ocean, DeFi has something for everyone.



Further Learning


Happy exploring in the ever-evolving landscape of decentralized finance!


About the Author

Luc Muhizi is a young tech enthusiast keen on utilising technology to tackle social challenges and shape a brighter future. Luc sees DeFi as a potent tool to democratise finance, making it available to everyone regardless of background or financial status.



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15 commentaires


nsabimana canisius
nsabimana canisius
09 nov. 2023

There is a lot to learn

J'aime

Invité
05 nov. 2023

Informative

J'aime

Invité
27 oct. 2023

Your articles are short and straight to the point.

J'aime

Invité
18 oct. 2023

Anything that can transform the current finance landscape is welcome.

J'aime
Luc Muhizi
Luc Muhizi
18 oct. 2023
En réponse à

Thanks for reading

J'aime

Invité
18 oct. 2023

looking forwar to kearning more

J'aime
Luc Muhizi
Luc Muhizi
18 oct. 2023
En réponse à

I will be writing more on this site.

J'aime
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