Growing up, I was taught that banks were the primary pillars of the financial world — I realized, I was wrong when I got my hands on DeFi.
Just as you begin to think the buzz around DeFi has elevated, you might think that most people at least have bank accounts. Well, you’re wrong. As per research, about 1.7 billion people in the world do not have access to a bank account.
Not being connected to a financial system, makes day-to-day living much more complicated. However, what is even astounding is that about 1 billion of these people have mobile phones and about 500 million have access to the internet.
DeFi, short for Decentralized Finance, this is a concept that anyone can rebuild traditional financial services from scratch in a decentralised manner, without worrying about getting censored. We can not only participate, but also able to innovate globally from day one.
In the last year, DeFi has gained propulsion bringing about a digital revolution. More than half a billion dollars have been locked in overall DeFi protocols, which only shows how fast this industry is pacing.
Being permissionless, fast, secure and transparent, Decentralized Finance is on its journey to replacing the financial hurdles that we face in the world today because of centralized entities.
Now it’s been a while since I’ve been playing around with DeFi. The difference and impact it can have on how we bank in future is quite evident. It matured with the idea of one having transparency with their assets and being able to securely send, receive, lend, borrow, stake etc.
Here are a few barriers DeFi is knocking out:
Being a foreign student, sending and receiving money from home would take about 2–3 business days and I am usually charged a minimum $30 per transfer. Which was unacceptable, living on a tight budget in a foreign country.
After interacting with DeFi for the first time last year, I was amazed by how I loaned myself some DAI (USD pegged stable coin) for the first time on a Sunday while the banks were closed.
Thereafter, I introduced Coinbase and USDC to my father. I helped my dad set up a Coinbase account, converted fiat to USDC, and then he sent the money to my address. I had enough funds to pay for my tuition in just a couple of minutes. Most of the time, sending money is risky and unsafe. I remember how restless and anxious my father and I got when sending or receiving money.
It’s wondrous how we didn’t require the approval of a third person. Allowing everyone to have access to it without any geographical limits.
DeFi could turn into a blessing to several people in less advanced areas in the world, where banks are hard to come by. Having to trust the transaction instead of middlemen, makes everything more unbiased and more secure.
People usually presume that one needs to be 18 to deal with money. This is because banks make us believe that we need a third person to help us manage our assets. The lack of education in society has consistently led people to be ignorant about topics like these because they were afraid that they’d lose their money.
Banks, governments and other central entities love using confusing terms to make you think only they can do what they do. DeFi makes it easy to get on board with a protocol that could help you manage your assets. All you need is an internet connection to get started.
It’s fascinating to see how the younger people are so familiar with how DeFi works and think that traditional finance is way more complicated.
I am not surprised I have more money in DeFi than I do in my bank account. This simple dashboard that I call my Bank allows me to not only borrow and lend but also earn interest!
In this world, risk of financial catastrophe and data exploitation circle back to how banks require us to provide A LOT of personal details to start using their services.
The 2008 Financial Crisis is a good example where the whole US market (including highly qualified banks) was bullish on real estate.
I highly recommend watching the movie, “The Big Short”. It’s about a group of clever opportunists that make a fortune of the U.S. economic crash by sniffing out the flaws and corruption in the system in advance and betting against the banks.
Every single time you pay rent or invest in the stock market or even pay for food, you’re exposed to getting hacked. Traditionally, every transaction must go through a central institution, and just one weak link can leave all your money hanging by a thread.
Banks are people, and people make mistakes. However, in this new financial system, you don’t trust humans, you simply trust the algorithm. With the underlying blockchain tech behind DeFi, transactions have become secure and nearly impossible to hack.
My father thought this was some sort of scam before I convinced him to at least give it a shot. Now, he knows why banks are always revolting against cryptocurrency.
Speed and Cost
Sending, receiving, lending and borrowing me take just about a couple of minutes if not seconds, unlike traditional systems that take as much as days for a single transaction.
Despite moving $100k across two accounts, CDP #18917 was only charged $0.25 to process the transaction.
Evidently, money will eventually — and sooner — go digital. Decentralized Finance can restructure how the current market functions and change the course of how the world connects.
Bill Gates quoted this as a big opportunity for technological innovation:
“If we were building a financial system from scratch today, we’d do it on a digital platform. Digital can lower the cost on a range of transactions by as much as 90%, providing nearly universal access to innovative financial products and services.”
DeFi is writing the whole banking system from scratch. It is worthwhile to keep track of the DeFi movement because it embodies a group of pissed off people who are ambitious to build a fairer financial system.
DeFi is substantially a technological promise, but like any promise, it needs time to unfold. InstaDApp is excited to work with the rest of the crypto ecosystem in making DeFi simple and accessible to everyone.
If you have any thoughts, hit me up on Twitter!