The number of Ordinal inscriptions on the Bitcoin (BTC) network has witnessed another meteoric rise, almost doubling from 2.5 million to 4.78 million in the last eight days.
While the Ordinals protocol was initially used to create images as non-fungible tokens (NFTs), users began to realize that they could use text-based inscriptions to create fungible tokens in a similar way to those made through the ERC-20 token standard on the Ethereum (ETH) network.
These text-based inscriptions, now known as the BRC-20 token standard, are the main reason for a huge increase in Ordinals inscriptions on the Bitcoin blockchain.
As Glassnode co-founder and CTO, Rafael Schultze-Kraft, highlighted on Twitter, text-based inscriptions are now the most popular form of Ordinal inscription, with more than 2.8 million text-based inscriptions. text on May 5.
8/ In fact, textual inscriptions are now the most popular type of Ordinal inscription in #Bitcoin network.
Inscriptions dashboard: https://t.co/YKwAbthEXL pic.twitter.com/O12MZj0qLT
– Rafael Schultze-Kraft (@n3ocortex) May 4, 2023
More recent data from popular blockchain data hub Dune Analytics shows that as of April 25, the majority (99%) of all new Ordinal inscriptions are text-based.
According to a new tool that allows users to track BRC-20 tokens called brc-20.io, there are currently a total of 14,200 new tokens hosted on the Bitcoin blockchain . Counted among the most popular Bitcoin-based tokens are “ordi”, “nals” and even a Bitcoin-based version of the now famous memecoin Pepe (PEPE) listed at number 3 in total cap in the market.
While the total market cap of BRC-20 tokens is currently hovering around the $700 million mark, digital asset investment firm Galaxy Digital says the market for “Bitcoin NFTs” may be coming to $4.5 billion by 2025.
Related: Bitcoin Ordinals community debates fixed after inscription validation bug
The rise in Ordinals over the past few months continues to fuel the debate as to whether Ordinals are ultimately positive for the Bitcoin ecosystem.
Some Bitcoin advocates like Dan Held Claims Ordinals offer a wider spread of financial use cases for Bitcoin, while more hardline Bitcoiners ARGUE that Ordinals strayed from Satoshi Nakamoto’s original vision, which was intended for Bitcoin to be used as an electronic, peer-to-peer cash system.
In the meantime, miners are enjoying a huge surge in income due to transaction fees associated with the explosion of new network activity.