Top 15 Layer-1 (L1) Crypto Projects to Watch in 2024

Top 15 Layer-1 (L1) Crypto Projects to Watch in 2024

Layer-1 blockchains are the foundational networks that form the backbone of the blockchain world, supporting a vast array of applications and services. This article delves into the best Layer-1 blockchains to keep an eye on in 2024, highlighting their unique features and potential impact on the crypto ecosystem.

Layer 1 stands as the foundational bedrock of blockchain technology. Layer 1 blockchains are the mainstays of the crypto-ecosystem, ensuring security and consensus at the most fundamental level. From Ethereum's transition to proof-of-stake to the rise of eco-friendly blockchains, the crypto space is exploring ways to address the limitations of layer 1 blockchain networks, giving birth to layer 2 and layer 3 protocols.


What Is a Layer-1 Blockchain? 

Layer-1 blockchains, also known as the base layer, are the core underlying networks where transactions are finalized and recorded. Unlike Layer-2 solutions, which build upon existing blockchains to enhance scalability and speed, Layer-1 protocols are independent networks with their consensus mechanisms and security models. These networks are critical in ensuring decentralized, secure, and transparent transaction processing, making them essential in the burgeoning world of digital assets.


What Makes Layer-1 Networks Unique? 

Layer-1 blockchains, as the foundational frameworks of the cryptocurrency world, offer numerous advantages that are pivotal to the functioning and growth of the digital economy: 


  1. Layer-1 blockchains offer decentralization and security, immutability, and transparency, ensuring no single entity controls the network, transactions are permanent and accurate, and all transactions are visible for trust and accountability.

  2. They operate independently, executing transactions and smart contracts without reliance on external systems. They also employ various consensus mechanisms like Proof of Work or Proof of Stake for transaction validation and network integrity.

  3. Most Layer-1 blockchains support native tokens integral to the network's economy, used for transaction fees, staking, and governance, enhancing the network's utility and value.

  4. As the foundational layer in blockchain technology, Layer-1 blockchains have wide acceptance and integration into various systems and services and provide a flexible foundation for developers to build a range of decentralized applications.

  5. Popular Layer-1 blockchains benefit from strong network effects. They are generally more resistant to network congestion than Layer-2 solutions, as more users increase their value and utility, and Layer-2 solutions depend on Layer-1 for final transaction settlement. While Layer-2 solutions can alleviate some immediate congestion issues on Layer-1, they still rely on the foundational security and finality provided by Layer-1.

Best Layer-1 Blockchains to Watch

Top Layer-1 Blockchains and Their TVLs | Source: CoinGecko


We have curated a list of the best Layer-1 networks to keep an eye on based on their popularity, market cap, level of on-chain activity and adoption, and market performance of their native cryptocurrencies in 2023: 


1. Solana (SOL) 


Solana TVL: $3.46 billion

SOL Market Cap: $61 billion

SOL Price Gains (1Y): 464%


Known for its high throughput and low transaction costs, Solana stands out as a robust Layer-1 blockchain. Its innovative consensus mechanism, Proof of History (PoH), combined with Proof of Stake (PoS), enables extremely high speed and efficiency, making it a popular choice for decentralized applications (dApps). The SOL token is primarily used to pay for transaction fees and smart contract execution on the Solana blockchain, and it is also staked by validators and delegators to secure the network through its Proof of Stake consensus mechanism. At the time of writing, Solana has surpassed XRP to become the fifth most valuable cryptocurrency by market cap. 


In 2023, Solana's ecosystem saw significant advancements, solidifying its standing in the cryptocurrency sphere. The launch of Solana Improvement Documents (SIMDs) formalized the process for developers to suggest protocol enhancements, with 79 SIMDs written since its inception. The development of Firedancer, a major upgrade for Solana validators, aims to increase transaction speed significantly. Solana's network security and decentralization were emphasized with over 2,000 nodes and a commitment to validator diversity. The successful integration of Helium onto Solana's platform in 2022 demonstrated its robust support for decentralized systems. 


The ecosystem also witnessed a surge in diverse projects, including memecoins and associated aidrops (e.g., BONK airdrops), DeFi protocols (especially liquid staking protocols like Marinade Finance and Jito), NFT marketplaces, and unique applications like Raydium, Orca, STEPN, Star Atlas, Audius, and The Graph. Jupiter, a key player in Solana's DeFi ecosystem, made substantial progress, introducing Jup Tokens and developing a world-class routing engine. Partnerships with Google Cloud and AWS aimed to increase network transparency and simplify the deployment of RPC nodes and consensus. Lastly, the launch of Solana Mobile Saga and a collaboration with Helium Mobile underscored Solana's dedication to expanding its ecosystem and integrating innovative technologies. The Solana Saga smartphone flew off the shelves after the announcement of BONK airdrops to owners in December 2023. 

2. Avalanche (AVAX) 


Avalanche TVL: $1.5 billion

AVAX Market Cap: $13.4 billion

AVAX  Price Gains (1Y): 83%


Avalanche (AVAX) is a high-performance, scalable Layer-1 blockchain platform designed for decentralized applications and custom blockchain networks. It stands out for its rapid transaction processing speed, achieving finality in under two seconds, which is one of its key strengths. Its unique consensus mechanism, combining elements of Classical and Nakamoto consensus, offers a powerful combination of security, scalability, and decentralization, making it a notable player in the blockchain space. The AVAX token is used for paying transaction fees, securing the network through staking, participating in the consensus mechanism, and as a basic unit of account across the multiple subnetworks within the Avalanche ecosystem.


In 2023, the Avalanche ecosystem saw significant growth while the AVAX price experienced a remarkable price rally, increasing its market value and transactional activity. The Avalanche C-Chain set a new record with an estimated total of 3.07 million transactions, indicating growing adoption of the network. Inscriptions transactions have come to represent over 50% of all transactions on the Avalanche network. This has led to a considerable increase in network fees. In a span of just five days, Avalanche users paid a staggering $13.8 million in transaction fees for minting and moving inscription-related tokens. This increase in network activity is linked to the higher demand for block space, leading to an escalation in transaction costs.


The network also saw a substantial increase in the burning of AVAX tokens, attributed to the proliferation of registrations and transactions. Avalanche's C-Chain set a new all-time high with 2.3 million transactions per day on November 19, compared to the average of 450 thousand per day. The surge in ASC-20 tokens led to the Avalanche Primary Network processing 40-plus transactions per second, with a block time-to-finality of roughly one second. High-profile collaborations, including a partnership with J.P. Morgan’s blockchain Onyx, were a significant part of Avalanche’s growth, demonstrating its utility and recognition in various sectors.

3. Kaspa (KAS)


Kaspa TVL: NA 

KAS Market Cap: $2.7 billion 

KAS  Price Gains (1Y): 257%


Kaspa (KAS) is a decentralized blockchain network that utilizes a novel consensus mechanism called "GHOSTDAG," enabling rapid transaction processing and scalability. Its strengths lie in its high block rate and instant finality, allowing for a significantly faster and more scalable network than traditional blockchain architectures. The Kaspa (KAS) coin is primarily used for paying transaction fees within the network and as a means of exchange, fostering the network's economic activity and incentivizing miners to secure the system.


In 2023, Kaspa (KAS), an emerging cryptocurrency, made significant advancements in its ecosystem. The shift to the Dag Knight consensus, an evolution of the GHOSTDAG protocol, marked a leap in blockchain efficiency, offering faster transaction and confirmation speeds. Kaspa transitioned from GoLang to Rust to exploit modern computing hardware's full potential, aiming for unprecedented transaction and block processing speeds—the development of a high-performance mobile wallet catered to the demand for mobile-friendly cryptocurrency solutions. Kaspa also increased the number of blocks and transactions processed per second, with Rust playing a key role in this enhancement. 


The native token, KAS, saw a remarkable surge in value by over 1,800% in 2023 reflecting growing interest in the Kaspa ecosystem. Improvements to enable P2P communication for archival nodes allowed extended data retrieval and access to more historical data sets. Plans were also in place to establish Kaspa as a fast, scalable, and secure Layer 1 PoW crypto, focusing on building a robust platform for smart contracts and decentralized applications. These developments underscore Kaspa's commitment to advancing its blockchain technology and enhancing its network's utility and efficiency.

4. Bitcoin (BTC)


Bitcoin TVL: $1.1 billion

BTC Market Cap: $1.2 trillion

BTC  Price Gains (1Y): 108%


The pioneer of cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin remains a cornerstone in the Layer-1 domain. Bitcoin (BTC) is the first decentralized digital currency, introduced in 2009 by an unknown person or group under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto. Its primary strengths are its pioneering blockchain technology, which offers high security and immutability, and its position as the most recognized and widely adopted cryptocurrency, serving as a store of value and a medium of exchange. BTC is mainly used for digital payments and investment and is increasingly used as a reserve asset, often referred to as "digital gold" due to its limited 21 million supply and decentralized nature. Bitcoin halving, a critical event in the Bitcoin ecosystem, occurs approximately every four years, reducing block rewards and driving scarcity of new Bitcoins mined. 


In 2023, the Bitcoin ecosystem saw several significant developments, reflecting its continuous evolution in the cryptocurrency world. The launch of the Bitcoin Ordinals protocol enabled the minting of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) directly on the Bitcoin blockchain, such as ORDI, SATS, RATS, DOVI, and others. Despite challenges, catalysts such as infrastructure progress and developer incentives emerged to accelerate developments in the Bitcoin ecosystem. 


Various Bitcoin sidechains and Bitcoin Layer-2 solutions, like Stacks, emerged to address Bitcoin's limitations in supporting smart contracts, opening up new possibilities for complex ecosystem businesses and DeFi applications. The ecosystem explored opportunities in derivative protocols like Atomicals and ARC20, which use Bitcoin's smallest unit, satoshis, to represent tokens. The Taproot Assets protocol, released by Lightning Labs, utilized information in UTXO scripts on the Bitcoin network to record various assets, showcasing Bitcoin's versatility. 

5. The Open Network (TON) 


The Open Network TVL: $145 million

TON Market Cap: $21.9 billion

TON Price Gains (1Y): 169%


The Open Network (TON), originally conceptualized and launched by Telegram founders Nikolai and Pavel Durov, is a decentralized Layer 1 blockchain aimed at high scalability and user-friendliness. After a regulatory clash with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission over its initial coin offering (ICO) which raised $1.7 billion, Telegram distanced itself from the project in 2020. The development has since been taken over by the TON Foundation and a vibrant community of independent developers, known as NewTON. The blockchain operates on a multi-level structure that incorporates sharding to increase efficiency and manage a high volume of transactions. 


Toncoin, TON's native cryptocurrency, is central to facilitating transactions and governance within the network. Users can stake Toncoin to participate in network validation or use it to pay for transaction fees, decentralized storage, and other network services. Over the past years, the TON ecosystem has expanded to include various decentralized applications (dApps), including social platforms, DeFi services, and NFT marketplaces, fostering a robust development environment. 


In terms of ecosystem development and market performance, TON introduced several significant features in 2023, including decentralized file storage and a specialized payment system that supports high-speed off-chain transactions. These advancements contribute to TON's utility in web3 applications and decentralized services. In March 2024, Telegram declared its plans to distribute 50% of its advertising revenue to channel owners. The payments would be processed through the TON blockchain and paid out in Toncoin. Following this announcement, Toncoin experienced a 40% surge in value, providing the cryptocurrency with a practical application associated with Telegram. An upcoming event of significant interest to investors and users alike is Telegram's potential initial public offering (IPO), which could significantly impact Toncoin's utility and market perception. If Telegram integrates more blockchain functionalities, specifically leveraging Toncoin within its expansive user base, this could enhance the token's utility and demand, potentially increasing its value. 

6. Internet Computer (ICP)


Internet Computer TVL: $88 million

ICP Market Cap: $5.7 billion

ICP  Price Gains (1Y): 112%


The Internet Computer (ICP) is a blockchain-based platform developed by the DFINITY Foundation, designed to expand the capabilities of traditional blockchains by enabling the hosting of smart contracts and entire software systems on-chain. Its strengths include a unique consensus mechanism that allows high transaction throughput and scalability, and its USP (unique selling point) lies in its ambitious goal to reinvent the internet by facilitating a decentralized, serverless cloud computing environment. The ICP coin is primarily used to process transactions and smart contracts on the network, reward network participants, and govern the protocol through the Network Nervous System (NNS).


In 2023, the Internet Computer (ICP) ecosystem experienced significant advancements, enhancing its decentralized computing capabilities. The integration of Websockets has enabled interactive applications in real time, while an expansion of stable memory has allowed for more complex applications. Canisters can now make secure HTTPS outcalls to Web 2.0, broadening smart contract applications. Direct integration with the Bitcoin network has streamlined cross-blockchain transactions, bypassing the need for intermediaries. 


The Internet Computer ecosystem now supports permissionless token issuance for DAO governance, bolstered by the Service Nervous System (SNS), which could increase DAO participation. The DFINITY Foundation has further stimulated growth by awarding grants for new services and solutions. Additionally, a surge in community and NFT projects, including social media platforms and trading marketplaces, reflects the ecosystem's organic growth and innovation.

7. Sei (SEI)


Sei TVL: $27 million

SEI Market Cap: $1.37 billion 

SEI  Price Gains (1Y): 6,000%


Sei (SEI) is a specialized Layer 1 blockchain designed primarily for DeFi applications, offering a high-speed and efficient environment for trading and financial transactions. Its strengths include its focus on optimized order book functionality and the integration of a native matching engine, which sets it apart as a USP by significantly reducing latency and improving the efficiency of decentralized exchanges (DEXs) and other financial protocols. The SEI token is used within the ecosystem for transaction fees, participating in network governance, and potentially for staking purposes, playing a key role in maintaining and operating the network.


In 2023, the Sei network bolstered its evolution in the blockchain and cryptocurrency realms with a series of strategic advancements. The Sei Ecosystem Fund swelled to $120 million, thanks to a $50 million injection from Foresight Ventures, to back diverse Web3 applications in NFTs, gaming, and DeFi, following a $30 million raise from various investors. Sei's growth strategy emphasized penetrating Asian markets, leveraging the region's tech sophistication and high crypto adoption rates, and included partnerships like Graviton in India. 


Technologically, Sei has excelled with chain-level optimizations that enhance the performance and scalability of decentralized exchanges and trading apps, making it an appealing choice for developers. Additionally, the Sei Ecosystem Fund supports early-stage founders and teams to promote innovation and expansion within its ecosystem.

8. Sui (SUI) 


Sui TVL: $557 million

SUI Market Cap: $1.54 billion

SUI  Price Gains (1Y): -73%


Sui is a new blockchain platform designed for high throughput and scalability, focusing on enabling a wide range of decentralized applications with fast and efficient performance. Its strengths lie in its innovative consensus mechanism and the use of the Move programming language, which offers enhanced security and flexibility for developers. These features, combined with its capacity for handling a large number of transactions at low costs, serve as its USPs. The SUI token is utilized within the ecosystem for transaction fees, participating in network governance, and potentially for other utility purposes as the network develops.


In 2023, the Sui ecosystem advanced significantly with strategic token reallocations to bolster its community and DeFi applications, redirecting 157 million SUI tokens to various initiatives. Post-mainnet launch and listing on major exchanges, including KuCoin, Sui showcased its scalability with a record 65.8 million transactions in a day and a TVL peak of $188 million, making its way into the top 10 blockchains by TVL. 


The introduction of zkLogin revolutionized user access to dApps with enhanced privacy using Web 2 social accounts. Additionally, the TurboStar program on the Turbos DEX was launched to spur ecosystem project growth through fundraising support, awareness, and presale access while implementing measures to safeguard investors and offering zero commission for Sui projects.

9. Aptos (APT) 


Aptos TVL: $342 million

APT Market Cap: $3.8 billion

APT  Price Gains (1Y): -27%


Aptos is a Layer 1 blockchain developed with a focus on delivering high scalability, reliability, and usability for decentralized applications. Its strengths include the use of the Move programming language for secure and flexible smart contract development, and its USP is its highly efficient parallel execution engine that enhances transaction speed and throughput. The APT token is primarily used for transaction fees within the Aptos network, for participating in network governance and potentially for staking purposes to secure the network. 


In 2023, the Aptos (APT) ecosystem flourished with foundational support from a skilled team and over $400 million in funding from prominent investors like Tiger Global and PayPal Ventures. Aptos's technological prowess, highlighted by the Move programming language and parallel execution for scalable transaction processing, has led to a robust TVL exceeding $85 million, reflecting growing trust and adoption. The network's activity surged, with transactions frequently hitting hundreds of thousands and a spike in new accounts. 


Strategic expansions and partnerships have further enriched the ecosystem: Aptos integrated Sushi to enhance decentralized financial services, collaborated with Coinbase Pay for seamless transactions in the Petra wallet, and ventured into gaming and entertainment with Microsoft, NEOWIZ, MARBLEX, and Lotte Group. Additionally, Aptos introduced a new Digital Asset Standard for real-world applications and infrastructure updates like the Indexer for NFT notifications and MSafe's advanced multi-sig solution.

10. Polkadot (DOT)


Polkadot TVL: $230 million

DOT Market Cap: $9.6 billion

DOT  Price Gains (1Y): -0.39%


Polkadot is a multi-chain blockchain platform that enables different blockchains to transfer messages and value in a trust-free fashion, sharing their unique features while pooling their security. Its strengths include interoperability, scalable multi-chain architecture, and the ability to connect and secure a network of specialized blockchains (parachains), which is its key advantage. The DOT token serves several key functions within the Polkadot network, including governance participation, staking for network security, and bonding to connect parachains.


In 2023, the Polkadot (DOT) ecosystem experienced a surge in innovation and growth, marked by a record 19,090 developer contributions on GitHub in March, leading to enhanced applications and network security. The introduction of parathreads provided a cost-effective model for blockchains, while Next-Generation Scheduling improved network scalability and flexibility. 


Polkadot 2.0 was announced, promising upgrades in scalability, governance, and interoperability. Staking on the network increased by 49% due to the new Nomination Pools, broadening user participation and network security. Notable integrations included Circle's USDC and the Rocco Testnet launch, aimed at optimizing transactions and user experience. The ecosystem also expanded with five new parachains, technological enhancements for scalability, and initiatives to attract institutional investors, including Zodia Custody's services.

11. Cosmos (ATOM)


Cosmos TVL: $1.25 million (CosmosHub)

ATOM Market Cap: $3.1 billion

ATOM  Price Gains (1Y): -36%


Cosmos is a decentralized network of independent blockchains, designed to address scalability and interoperability issues in blockchain technology. Its strength lies in the Inter-Blockchain Communication (IBC) protocol, allowing various blockchains to interact and share data while maintaining their sovereignty, its USP. The ATOM token is primarily used for staking, which secures the network, and for governance, giving holders a say in decisions regarding the network's future.


In 2023, the Cosmos (ATOM) ecosystem experienced significant growth through key developments such as the introduction of Interchain Security, boosting security for smaller blockchains within the network. The Cosmos Hub's on-chain activity surged, with an average of 500,000 daily transactions and a 20 million ATOM trading volume, reflecting its rising popularity. The Theta upgrade introduced Interchain Accounts, enhancing cross-chain interactions, while the Rho upgrade brought Liquid Staking and an NFT module, expanding network functionalities. 


The Cosmos Hub 2.0 white paper outlined a new vision for the Hub and the ATOM token's evolving role. The Interchain Foundation's $26.4 million allocation for Interchain Stack development in 2024 and optimistic views from investors like Arthur Cheong, especially considering dYdX's migration and Noble's USDC integration, point to a promising influx of capital and further ecosystem expansion.

12. Ethereum (ETH)


Ethereum TVL: $49 billion

ETH Market Cap: $371 billion

ETH Price Gains: (1Y): 47%


Boasting the largest developer community and a thriving dApp ecosystem with over 3,000 active applications, Ethereum dominates the Layer-1 landscape. Launched in 2015 by Vitalik Buterin and others, Ethereum has transcended its initial role as a digital currency platform to become the largest ecosystem of decentralized applications (dApps), non-fungible tokens (NFTs), decentralized finance (DeFi), and more. At its core, Ethereum provides a decentralized, open-source blockchain system that empowers developers to build and deploy applications without the need for central authorities, leveraging the power of its native cryptocurrency, Ether (ETH). 


Ethereum's primary strength lies in its early mover advantage and the extensive developer community it has nurtured. This community has contributed to a rich ecosystem of tools, frameworks, and protocols, driving innovation and growth. In 2023, Ethereum continued its journey toward Ethereum 2.0, with significant milestones aimed at improving scalability, security, and sustainability. Key developments included further enhancements to its layer-2 scaling solutions, such as rollups, which have played a crucial role in reducing fees and increasing transaction throughput. 


Looking ahead to 2024, the Ethereum community anticipates the full realization of Ethereum 2.0's benefits, with a particular focus on scalability and energy efficiency improvements. The completion of the transition to proof-of-stake is expected to further reduce Ethereum's environmental impact and enhance its appeal to environmentally conscious investors and users. Additionally, the ongoing development of layer-2 solutions and the potential for further integration with other blockchains suggests a future where Ethereum's ecosystem is more interconnected, scalable, and user-friendly than ever before.

13. BNB Chain (BNB)


BNB Chain TVL: $5.2 billion

BNB Market Cap: $82 billion

BNB Price Gains (1Y): 64% 


BNB Chain, formerly known as Binance Smart Chain (BSC), is a blockchain platform developed by the world’s leading cryptocurrency exchange, Binance. Launched in September 2020, it operates alongside Binance Chain, offering a high-performance network designed to run smart contract-based applications. BNB Chain distinguishes itself with dual-chain architecture, enabling users to seamlessly transfer assets between blockchains for a diverse range of applications, including decentralized finance (DeFi), non-fungible tokens (NFTs), and gaming. 


Compared to Ethereum, BNB Chain boasts a younger yet rapidly growing ecosystem with over 1,300 active dApps as of October 2023. Its native token, BNB, serves as the platform's fuel and enjoys widespread adoption within the Binance ecosystem and beyond. BNB Chain’s PoSA consensus enables faster and cheaper transactions compared to Ethereum's current state. Moreover, it seamlessly supports existing Ethereum dApps and tools, attracting developers familiar with the Ethereum ecosystem.


Here’s how to add BNB Chain to MetaMask and explore its ecosystem. 


In 2023, the project formally rebranded to BNB Chain, signaling a broader vision beyond Binance exchange integration and emphasizing DeFi and NFT functionalities. It also introduced a separate PoS chain for staking and governance, enhancing security and decentralization. Expansion of cross-chain bridges improved interoperability between BNB Chain and other blockchain ecosystems. In 2024, you can expect more focus on scalability with layer-2 integrations and potential sharding implementation within the BNB Chain ecosystem. Expect more strategic partnerships, innovative DeFi protocols and NFT projects launching on the blockchain. 

14. Kava (KAVA)


Kava TVL: $193 million

KAVA Market Cap: $704 million

KAVA Price Gains (1Y): -30%


Kava stands out as a unique Layer-1 blockchain that combines the Cosmos SDK's scalability and interoperability with an EVM-compatible chain, enabling Ethereum dApps to leverage Kava's features. This "co-chain" architecture positions Kava as a hub for innovative DeFi applications with fast transactions, low fees, and access to various assets. Compared to established giants like Ethereum, Kava has a smaller but quickly growing ecosystem with over 110 active dApps and a TVL of over $250 million. Its native token, KAVA, serves as the platform's governance and staking token, fueling various DeFi activities.


The Kava blockchain leverages Cosmos' Tendermint BFT consensus, ensuring high security and resistance to attacks. It also offers a native USD-pegged stablecoin, USDX, facilitating decentralized lending and borrowing without relying on centralized oracles. The recent Kava 14 upgrade has introduced capabilities for minting USDt directly on Cosmos, supported by strategic partnerships and integrations that enhance its liquidity and usability across the DeFi spectrum. 


Throughout 2023, Kava launched significant upgrades such as Kava 12 and Kava 13, focusing on enhancing flexibility for Cosmos DAOs, scaling the ecosystem to accommodate growing demand, and optimizing the user experience. The integration of major stablecoins and bridges, along with an emphasis on security and governance, has further solidified Kava's position as a leading blockchain platform. A pivotal change in Kava's journey is the transition to a fixed supply of KAVA tokens, introduced as part of the "Kava Tokenomics 2.0" upgrade. This transition aims to foster increased adoption and scarcity, potentially influencing liquidity and market dynamics. The establishment of a community-owned Strategic Vault with over $300 million in assets signifies a deeper commitment to decentralization and community value growth. 

15. ZetaChain (ZETA) 


ZetaChain TVL: $3.25 million

ZETA Market Cap: $325 million

ZETA Price Gains (1Y): 133%


ZetaChain aims to revolutionize interoperability by being the first truly "omnichain" Layer-1 blockchain. It can connect and interact with any blockchain, regardless of its architecture or native smart contract capabilities. This enables seamless asset transfers, data exchange, and even smart contract execution across different chains, fostering a unified Web3 experience.


As a relatively new player launched in March 2023, ZetaChain's ecosystem is still young but rapidly growing. They currently boast over 20 active dApps and strategic partnerships with prominent players like Chainlink and The Sandbox. One of the key strengths of ZetaChain is its ability to offer omnichain smart contracts, enabling seamless interactions between any blockchains. This unique capability solves the challenges associated with cross-chain and multi-chain environments, making it a valuable asset for developers and users looking for interoperable solutions in the DeFi space.


In 2023, ZetaChain achieved remarkable milestones, including surpassing 1,000,000 active users on its testnet from over 100 countries. The platform also recorded more than 6.3 million cross-chain transactions and supported the deployment of over 200 dApps on its testnet, indicating a robust and rapidly growing ecosystem. Throughout 2023, ZetaChain saw significant progress, including strategic partnerships, such as with Ankr Protocol to accelerate access to Web 3 infrastructure, and securing $27 million in funding to enhance interoperability within the blockchain ecosystem. Partnerships with platforms like BYTE CITY and Ultiverse aimed to introduce cross-chain functionality into social entertainment and gaming, respectively, further expanding ZetaChain's utility and reach. 

Layer 1 vs. Layer 2: The Continual Evolution

The ongoing development of Layer-1 and Layer-2 solutions reflects the dynamic nature of blockchain technology. While Layer-2 solutions address scalability and speed, Layer-1 blockchains remain the bedrock, ensuring security, decentralization, and foundational infrastructure for the crypto world. 


The relationship between Layer-1 and Layer-2 solutions is symbiotic. While Layer-2 enhances performance, it relies on the security and decentralization of Layer-1 blockchains. Both layers are evolving together. Improvements in Layer-1, like sharding in Ethereum, can enhance Layer-2 performance. Similarly, successful Layer-2 solutions can inform and inspire Layer-1 upgrades. This dual-layer development approach is likely to continue as blockchain technology finds more mainstream applications, requiring a balance of security, decentralization, scalability, and speed.


Explore all the differences between Layer 1 and Layer 2 blockchains



Layer-1 blockchains remain at the forefront of the crypto revolution as we enter 2024. Their ongoing evolution and adaptation are crucial in addressing the diverse and expanding needs of the digital world. From Solana's blazing speed to Bitcoin's unmatched security, each Layer-1 blockchain offers unique attributes that contribute to the rich tapestry of the blockchain universe. 


Layer-2 enhances performance, but it relies on the security and decentralization of Layer-1 blockchains. This synergy ensures a balance: Layer-1 provides a secure and decentralized base, while Layer-2 brings scalability and speed.


Further Reading 

  1. Top 10 Layer-2 Crypto Projects to Watch in 2024

  2. Blockchain Layer 1 vs. Layer 2 Scalability Solutions: Explained

  3. Top Ethereum Layer-2 Crypto Projects to Know in 2024

  4. Layer 2 vs. Layer 3 Blockchains: All You Need to Know

  5. Best Layer-0 Networks: The Backbone of Blockchain Scalability

  6. Top Bitcoin Layer-2 Projects to Know in 2024