The World Wide Web is currently going through a transition phase. It’s moving from central ownership of content and social interactions (Web 2.0) to decentralised platforms that offer highly immersive experiences (Web 3.0). And while both these versions of the internet are two very different entities, they do have one thing in common – you need a web browser to access both of them.
Web browsers have evolved immensely to keep up with these developments. The result is a new kind of browser that many of us will soon be switching over to. It is called the ‘crypto browser’ or ‘web3 browser.’
But why does Web 3.0 need a whole new browser to itself? The answer is simple: user preferences. Crypto browsers are tailored for users interested in blockchain, NFT and cryptocurrencies. Also, with Web 3.0 browsers, public blockchains and decentralised applications automate most of the tasks that would otherwise require manual effort. Let’s find out how.
How does a crypto browser help?
On the surface, Web 3.0 browsers look quite similar to their Web 2.0 counterparts. However, they are created with nifty little features embedded within them, which could be helpful if you are a crypto enthusiast.
For instance, crypto browsers come with a dashboard that conveniently conveys all the relevant information about cryptocurrencies that could impact you as an investor. Price statistics delivered straight to your browser’s home page eliminate the need for you to navigate to, search for and view a different page. Some even allow you to connect your crypto wallet and check how much the live price action affects the value of your crypto holdings.
Moreover, these browsers push more crypto-related content to you than other conventional browsers. Presently the suggestions on your browser home page could feature the world news, suggested videos and social media widgets. On a crypto browser, these suggestions would show NFT marketplaces like OpenSea and Rarible, blockchain explorer websites, crypto forums, etc.
Also, crypto browsers are designed with built-in privacy and security measures like VPNs, self-clearing browser history, etc. But wait, can’t you do this on any other browser too? Sure, you can. However, the process is painfully long — you have to install one extension after the other to enjoy these features.
Web 3.0 browsers also walk the extra mile for your benefit. While most online platforms prioritise profits and sell your data to the highest bidder, crypto browsers prioritise user privacy and do not sell your data.
Some Web 3.0 browsers work in precisely the opposite manner, offering you rewards for watching ads whilst also withholding your personal information.
Should you be using a crypto browser?
Web 3.0 is still under development and currently in a very nascent stage, so you could probably delay the switch to a crypto browser for now. However, it goes without saying that a crypto browser lets you do everything a Web 2.0 browser does and more. It sieves out what you don’t need and automates the tasks you execute the most. Most importantly, it addresses key concerns about data security without compromising on other fronts.
There are several crypto browsers to choose from, but some of the top contenders include the Brave Browser, Opera Web3 Browser, and Osiris. Now, each of these has its own set of features and benefits. For instance, the Osiris browser promises to be seven times faster than traditional web browsers. It also prevents data suppression, blocks all intrusive ads, and inhibits extraction of information, thereby protecting you profiteering and data extortion.
The Opera Web 3.0 browser also offers interesting benefits, such as an inbuilt ad-blocker and VPN to ensure unhindered browsing and data privacy. It also offers an integrated crypto wallet that supports Ether (ETH) and a few other ERC-20 standard tokens. Users can scan their fingerprints to confirm their identity on connected wallets or approve transactions on the blockchain.
Finally, we have the Brave Browser. It too offers data privacy and faster processing speeds, prevents data collection, blocks ads and even routes your browsing data through three computers to keep your activity anonymous.
However, the most interesting feature is that it offers crypto rewards for watching ads, should you choose to see them in the first place.
However, all these browsers are still in a developmental phase, as is the version of the internet they cater to. Therefore, they could have more to offer as their evolution continues and more features get added.