What will encourage you to exercise more? The obvious answer, says the founder of StepN, is cold hard cash. Their Move-to-Earn running app rewards users for being more active and has already persuaded millions of people to sign up within months.
This is a simple principle, explains Ian Rong, co-founder of StepN. “We wanted to encourage people to change their behavior and exercise more,” he said. “It’s a way to share the benefits of Web3 technology with a new and diverse fitness enthusiast.”
To participate, users must download the STEPN app and then purchase a virtual pair of sneakers in the form of a non-fungible token (NFT). Once they do so, whenever they go for a walk, jog or run outside, STEPN’s GPS tracking and motion sensor technology monitors how far they’ve traveled and rewards them with tokens. These tokens can then be spent inside the game – such as upgraded sneakers – or cashed out in hard currency.
The offer looks potentially rewarding. Rong says users can expect to earn a minimum of $ 25 for 10 minutes of activity and some users are earning as much as 4,500 per day. But many don’t take all the cash, he adds. They use their earnings to acquire new NFT in the game, trade with other players and choose to pay some of their cash for good work.
If all this sounds too good to be true, there is a catch. To get started, you’ll need to buy NFT sneakers priced at Solana Blockchain’s native cryptocurrency, on which STEPN operates. And they’re expensive: the daily price in Fiat currency varies according to the value of the sole, but the cheapest sneakers will pay you back hundreds of dollars – and, at times, the entry price has gone above $ 1,000.
In the coming months, STEPN hopes to introduce a sneaker rental feature to cover this significant advance cost of participating. New players will rent sneakers from anyone already in the game, sharing the revenue they earn with the sneaker owner until they earn enough to buy their own NFT sneaker. This will encourage more people to participate – and will help StepNe enter new markets; It is currently the most popular in rich countries such as Japan, France, the United States and the United Kingdom, where users can afford to buy that first NFT.
For now, however, the barrier to entry into higher initial purchase prices does not seem to be stopping people. Since the launch of STEPN last December, 2.3 million monthly active users have signed up for the app, half a million of them using the app any day. It has seen the value of STEPN’s tokens rise, with its trading volume of GMT governance tokens exceeding Bitcoin and Etherium on certain days.
Indeed, STEPN is attracting significant interest in the cryptocurrency investment world, with tokens registering a few hundred percent profit at their top despite significant volatility. Although new cryptocurrencies have come and gone at an alarming rate over the past few years, some investors are betting that based on the move-to-earn policy that STEPN will give it even longer.
In the case of STEPN, it reduced its NFT trading fees by 6%, generating significant revenue for the company in a very short period of time – the company made a profit of $ 26 million in the last quarter of last year alone and has already earned more than $ 1 billion in valuations by some analysts.
Still, Rang and his co-founder Jerry Huang are not resting in their honor. They see STEPN as the first step in offering a larger Web3, believing that users who are accustomed to the concept of cryptocurrency and decentralized money will have the confidence to participate more widely. “Users can expect more exciting developments from STEPN in the future,” Rong said “There are plans to integrate more SocialFi elements into the app’s platform and roll out interesting features to make it easier for non-native crypto users to board the World 3.”
The founders are also keen to emphasize their green certification. In addition, Solana’s use of STEPN, widely regarded as an eco-friendly blockchain, allows businesses to donate some of their profits to buy carbon removal credit.
More traditional sports businesses are taking notice. Last month STEPN announced a partnership with footwear giant ASICS, which released a limited edition set of branded sneakers on the app. “The STEPN app is an incredible feat of technological innovation and we believe that immediate and long-term collaboration with ASICS will help millions of people around the world achieve a healthy mind in a healthy body,” said Joe Pace, Head of Business Development at ASICS.