How to Buy Band (BAND)

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Robert has reported for a variety of international publications including the Associated Press, The Guardian, Vice, and Decrypt. Current areas of interest include the political economy of technology, cryptocurrencies, and privacy. Robert has a Bachelor of Science from UCL, and a Master's degree from the University of Oxford's Internet Institute.

What is BAND?

BAND is the native token of Band Protocol, which is what’s known as an oracle: a decentralized network that connects blockchain applications to real-world applications and delivers information from one service to another in a super-secure way.

As sophisticated as blockchains are, most can’t access data from, say, a web page. To receive information from real-world applications like that, they have to rely on oracles like Band, or its far larger rival Chainlink, to send the data in a trustless and verifiable manner.

For example, a decentralized gambling protocol might use the Band Protocol to settle a bet on a football game; the Band Protocol could take data from a reliable sports broadcaster and feed it back to the gambling app.

Band Protocol was founded in 2017, and its token was launched in 2019 as an ERC-20 token — meaning it was built on the Ethereum blockchain, the most popular decentralized network after Bitcoin.

In June 2020, Band transitioned to the Cosmos network. While all Ethereum applications are secured by a single coin, ETH, Cosmos apps can operate on their own blockchains. This means that BAND is no longer dependent on the security of Ethereum miners. Band’s independent blockchain is called BandChain.

As of May 2022, BAND’s market cap of $234 million was far smaller than the $4.1 billion market cap of its main rival, the decentralized oracle network Chainlink (LINK).

What can you do with BAND?

Aside from speculating on its price, you can stake BAND within its blockchain, meaning you can lock it up within a smart contract to validate transactions and earn rewards.

You can also use BAND to pay for transactions on the Band Protocol. Others might transfer BAND between wallets on BandChain. To do so, they’d need to pay a little extra BAND to validate that transaction.

Lastly, BAND is a governance token, meaning that you can use it to influence the parameters that define the economics of the BAND token, such as the rewards issued to those who stake transactions or the cost of queries (work performed by Band’s decentralized oracle, such as the gambling protocol asking Band to scrape the latest football scores).

How can you buy BAND?

There are three main ways to buy BAND: from a brokerage, like Wealthsimple Crypto, through a centralized cryptocurrency exchange, or through the smart contracts of a decentralized exchange.

To buy BAND from a brokerage, such as Wealthsimple Crypto, you’ll need to sign up for an account, provide a form of identification, then buy BAND for either cryptocurrencies or Canadian dollars. Brokerages buy BAND from elsewhere, then sell it directly to their customers.

The second method is to use a cryptocurrency exchange. These are companies that operate order books that connect buyers with sellers. To buy BAND at the market price, you place a “spot” trade. When you hit “buy,” the exchange adds your trade to a queue, then fulfills it as soon as someone agrees to sell BAND to you at your preferred price.

Decentralized exchanges, like Uniswap, are cryptocurrency exchanges that operate entirely on code. These exchanges let you buy BAND by swapping it for another token held in a liquidity pool, which is a huge reserve of two or more tokens. You’ll have to pay a transaction fee to the decentralized exchange, using a Web3 wallet (like MetaMask), an important tool for accessing the Web3 economy.

Last Updated June 30, 2022

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