My web3 shopping spree continues. I purchased and blogged about my recent purchase of an Unstoppable Domain. This time around, I switched the blockchain and purchased yet another domain name: pandatechie.sol.
Difference? The unstoppable domain purchase was made on polygon chain. This means, it covered the entire Ethereum and L2 ecosystem. However, with other blockchains catching up fast, I think each one of them would come up with their own DNS solution. If you have been following me for a while, you must know that I just love Solana. I call it my SOLmate. Get it? No?
Solana is fast, cheap and very tidy as compared to dApps built on other blockchains. So when something like this was built on Solana, I had to claim pandatechie.sol before anyone else.
In this blogpost, we would discuss some key reasons behind purchasing this domain, some differences and shortcomings when compared to UD (Unstoppable Domains) and finally, how to buy one if you make up your mind. Let’s get started.
Why .sol Domain?
We have talked about this in the past as well. Current domain names are centralized and managed by ICANN. Likes of Godaddy and Blackrock simply rent these out on our behalf and charge an annual fees for the same.
Decentralized domains are different. They transfer the ownership to the buyer and anyone can validate it from the immutable records on blockchain.
You see web3 is all about the real ownership of your assets. And that’s what products like Bonafida, ENS and UD are powering on multiple blockchains.
And then of course using this name as your twitter handle and a common wallet address is always there. We covered these features in depth here.
How Does it Work?
It is rather simple to create a .sol domain. All you need to do is pay a minimal gas fee. This means a domain could be yours under $0.1. This created a problem in itself. If that is the case, anyone could purchase bulk of them and impersonate to be someone else.
Which is why, to make it a legit purchase, Bonafida works on an auction mechanism. Once you decide to buy a domain name, there is an auction run on it for next 3 days. If no one outbids you, you are allowed to buy the domain on the base price.
Apart from that, there are certain domains which are at a higher risk of impersonation. Therefore, they are kept in something called Bonafida Reserved Category. You need to prove your ownership to be a part of it.
How to Buy a .sol Domain?
Let’s take it from the top assuming that this is your first every transaction in a decentralised world:
A few things that need to be in place before you get started are as follows:
A. Create a Phantom wallet account. It’s extremely simple. All you need to do is head to this link and add this extension to the browser that you are using.
Once this extension is installed, you can simply sign up and follow the steps. It’s simply going to ask you for a password and ask you to remember and re-enter a seed phrase.
Once again, seed phrases are extremely sensitive information. If you lose/compromise your seed phrase, you lose your crypto. Forever!
B. Next step is to go and buy $SOL on a Centralized Exchange like CoinDCX etc. As you know for all decentralized transactions which are happening on the blockchain, you need gas fees. On Solana ecosystem, this job is done by $SOL.
You need about $25 worth of Solana for buying domain. This is assuming that no one outbids the domain that you have picked.
Step 1: Transfer Solana to Phantom
We transferred crypto from a CEX to wallets like Metamask in the past. The process is exactly the same here as well. Open your phantom wallet as shown in the screenshot and copy the address of depositing SOL.
Go to your Centralized Exchange where you have purchased this token and hit withdraw button. Enter the address that you just copied, verify the details, OTP related formalities and you’re done!
Transferring SOL is really cheap as compared to something like ETH. I transferred my holdings to Phantom under Rs. 50.
Step 2: Choosing Your Domain
Head over to Bonafida and pick the domain name that you want to buy. At this point, there could be three options.
A. The domain that you have picked is already taken. You can see the wallet address of the holder but that’s the end of story.
B. Domain could have been unclaimed but already undergone an auction. At that point, you simply pay the highest bid amount and claim it.
C. There might not have been an auction for that domain. In that case, you place the minimum bid (varies for each domain) and wait for 72 hours to see if someone outbids you.
The steps below highlight what should be the next course of action if you have to initiate the bid for your domain.
Step 3: Buying $FIDA for Auction:
The auction bidding happens in $FIDA. This is the native token of Bonafida platform. Each $FIDA is currently trading at $4.5. So in this step, let’s understand how to exchange your $SOL for $FIDA.
Head over to Raydium which is a decentralized exchange on Solana ecosystem. Connect your wallet and select the ‘Swap‘ tab from the top.
In the “From” section, enter SOL and in the “To” section enter FIDA. To ensure that you are buying the correct token and not a scam, you can enter this contract address: EchesyfXePKdLtoiZSL8pBe8Myagyy8ZRqsACNCFGnvp (I picked it from Coinmarketcap)
Once both ‘from’ and ‘to’ are sorted out, enter the amount of FIDA you need for the transaction (discovered in previous step)
Hit swap and sign the transaction from Phantom wallet. Real soon, you would be able to see $FIDA tokens in your wallet.
Step 4: Placing a Bid
It’s pretty simple from there on. You can now hit the place bid option and put in the required $FIDA. Make sure you have some SOL left after purchasing $FIDA or else you won’t be able to pay the gas fees.
Step 5: Recheck and Claim
This is one area of improvement for web3. There’s no notification if someone outbids you or the auction has ended. You have to repeatedly check and make your moves accordingly.
For pandatechie.sol, there was no other bidder so after 3 days, I simply headed back to the site and claimed the domain.
By claiming it is simply meant that you pay a little gas fee and transfer the ownership to yourself.
I have said it before, I will say it again! Web3 is coming. Are you game for it? A wilder use case of Solana Name service would be to flip domains. That’s what a lot of people did back in early 2000s when internet was starting off. You could buy something like flipkart.sol and wait. If flipkart ever goes web3, you could make a fortune out of this.
Possibilities are endless. What weird use case do you have in mind?
Btw, if you are a seasoned trader or just testing the waters with derivatives, here’s an exchange specifically meant for that. Head over to MCS using this link. Still not convinced? Join the vibrant community that is talking about MCS on Telegram, here.
Oh, by the way, the MCS year end trading competition is still live. It’s a one time chance to make some money as you trade from a pool of $200,000. Check out the details here.