Move-to-Earn is a new web3 economic model that rewards users for participating in fitness and sports-related activities.
You can make money with Move-to-Earn by exercising, staking, trading, and minting.
Move-to-Earn rewards participants after performing physical exercises, like walking, jogging, and running while Play-to-Earn rewards players after winning battles, progressing through levels, and exploring the virtual world.
Keeping fit is one of the most common New Year’s Resolutions. However, with 80% of New Year’s Resolutions failing, most people seem to struggle to keep fit because of a lack of motivation or incentives. Some people look at their routines and dramatically complain: “I don’t have the time or energy.”
But what if you could earn rewards by staying fit?
This is where Move-to-Earn (M2E) comes in. M2E is a new crypto economy that incentivizes a healthier and more active lifestyle. Multiple M2E apps have emerged to make fitness more attractive and rewarding by incentivizing users with cryptocurrencies and other rewards.
Apps like STEPN, SweatCoin, Genopets, Step App, and Dotmoovs strive to make M2E more accessible, intuitive, and sustainable. This article takes you through what Move-to-Earn is, how to earn crypto with Move-to-Earn, Move-to-Earn vs. Play-to-Earn, the top Move-to-Earn crypto based on market cap, and the future of Move-to-Earn.
What is Move to Earn?
M2E apps enable users to earn crypto rewards by participating in fitness and sports-based activities. These apps leverage a similar model to Play-to-Earn (P2E) web3 apps, rewarding participants for their contribution and skill. But M2E requires users to remain active and participate in physical exercises and activities instead of sitting behind gaming gadgets. Most M2E apps apply decentralized finance (DeFi) features to reward participants and give them skin in the game.
According to a study carried out in 2013 by the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, financial rewards ranging from 2-$46 weekly boasted fitness participation for almost half a year and were more effective for sedimentary grownups. Another study also established that giving even small incentives, like 1/1000 of a cent for every step made, increased physical activity.
More recently, research conducted by Nature found that small monetary incentives, such as those collected through M2E platforms, play an essential role in inspiring people to exercise. Participants could generate little financial incentives, like $1.75 worth of Amazon points for working out or $0.9 for resuming workouts after being absent for a while. Over half of such interventions boasted weekly activities between 9-27%.
Typically, the M2E model takes existing technologies and integrates them seamlessly to create a brand-new product. For instance, M2E apps leverage the Global Positioning System (GPS), Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), blockchain, cryptocurrencies, and gaming technologies to track user movement and reward them.
The Move to Earn Business Model
Like play to earn, some move to earn apps are free to use, while others require the participants to purchase NFTs to get started, like how STEPN requires its users to purchase or rent sneakers before they can play. As they move, players can earn cryptocurrencies that can be used to purchase or upgrade NFTs from the blockchain games, and these can be used to help the player progress. To turn these in-game items into cash, there is often also a secondary market, where players can generate income by selling their NFTs or cryptocurrency rewards.
Move to earn games use the participants’ mobile gadgets’ sensors like GPS and step-counters to track their moves and reward them for working out. These are the common ways through which you can earn with move to earn.
Earning through Exercising
Most M2E platforms are based on regular physical exercises. The idea behind this method is that if you move around (running, jogging, etc.,) you will be rewarded with in-game digital assets. Essentially, running in playgrounds, streets, and forests is the core of the M2E model. Besides, most web3 fitness apps incentivize users with unique in-game currencies or assets, which can be converted to other crypto assets or used to purchase online items.
Earning through Trading
Staking for Rewards
Some M2E apps, especially those that use GameFi mechanics, have staking functionalities. For example, Step App offers perpetual staking to enable users to stake their assets and receive rewards indefinitely. On the other hand, STEPN users can stake their Sneaker NFTs to generate rewards.
Apps like STEPN and Step App allow participants to mint special in-game NFTs that they can later use or exchange on secondary markets.
Play to Earn (P2E) vs. Move to Earn (M2E)
People often confuse Play-to-Earn (P2E) with M2E since they are all elements of the GameFi ecosystem. P2E games reward users with digital assets after winning battles, progressing through levels, and exploring the virtual world. Popular P2E games include Axie Infinity, Aavegotchi, and The Sandbox. On the other hand, M2E games reward users for performing physical exercises, like walking, jogging, and running. Examples include STEPN, MetaGym, and Sweatcoin.
While P2E and M2E are classified as GameFi, the rewarding structure and revenue models are the significant differences between P2E and M2E:
Top 5 Move to Earn Apps Based on Market Cap
In the last year, the number of M2E apps has grown substantially, and most have been successful in terms of adoption rates and token value. Here are some of the most popular Move to Earn games and their related cryptocurrencies based on market cap:
STEPN (GMT) - $412 Million Market Cap
STEPN launched in March 2022 on the Solana network and required interested players to purchase or rent a pair of NFT sneakers to get started. These NFTs are priced differently based on the type, level, and quality, which determine the number of rewards players earn and how fast they can generate in-app items. Generally, high-end sneakers are equipped with faster earning power. Players start generating rewards when their physical activities outdoors are tracked using GPS.
STEPN uses two digital currencies, GST and GMT. Green Satoshi Token (GST) is the leading utility currency for rewarding participants. Players also use it to mint, repair, and upgrade their sneakers. You can trade GST on exchanges like Phemex, Uniswap, Binance, etc. On the other hand, you can buy the Green Metaverse Token (GMT) from exchanges like Binance, Bitrue, OKX, FTX, and Coinbase. Besides, you can earn it by wearing a sneaker ranked level 30 and above.
As for GMT, the supply is expected to be 95% vested by May 2030, with majority of the tokens reserved for Move & Earn and the Ecosystem and Treasury.
Check out the STEPN (GMT) Tokenomics page for more information.
Sweatcoin (SWEAT) - $85 Million Market Cap
Sweatcoin is another web3 fitness app that pays users for working out. The platform’s remarkable partnership with healthcare organizations, such as the U.K.’s National Health Service (NHS), proves that the project takes into account people’s needs. The SWEAT token – the native currency of Sweatcoin – launched in April 2022 on the Near protocol ecosystem based on the below SWEAT token allocation chart.
The app uses SWEAT tokens to incentivize participants to keep fit. You can earn SWEAT tokens by downloading the Sweatcoin app and creating an account – you don’t need any initial investment like in most apps. However, you can upgrade to a premium membership to access a premium marketplace and enjoy higher earning rates.
Step App (FITFI) - $23 Million Market Cap
Step App is the third M2E crypto based on market cap. FITFI holders can stake it and participate in draws to win Sneaks simultaneously. It’s also used to facilitate burn rates, revenue allocations, achievements, etc. Step App (FITFI) raised $7 million in the Public Sale on 11 April 2022.
Find out more about Step App (FITFI)’s Tokenomics here.
Like STEPN, Step App requires players to stake NFT sneakers to generate rewards. Besides, users can upgrade their sneakers, like in the STEPN case.
Step App has a second token, KCAL, which acts as the platform’s utility token. You need the token to purchase sneaker NFTs and participate in competitions. Apart from purchasing KCAL, you can acquire it using the platform and staking a pair of sneakers. You can trade these tokens on popular exchanges like Gate.io, Huobi Global, Bybit, and KuCoin.
Genopets (GENE) - $14 Million Market Cap
Genopets is a unique top-five M2E game. It combines M2E and P2E models via role-playing games (RPG) to incentivize players to participate in games, workouts, and care for NFT pets. By letting players mint and sell Genopet NFTs, Genopet’s free-to-play mechanism allows participants to generate crypto rewards without necessarily making significant initial investments.
The app also has a dual token system, like STEPN. The first token is GENE, which acts as a governance token, and the second is KI, an in-game token for facilitating in-game activities and rewards. You can trade these tokens on exchanges like Bitget, FTX, PancakeSwap, LATOKEN, and Orca. By giving participants a gamified experience where they nurture, contest, and grow digital items, Genopets inspires them to take good care of their minds and bodies.
Dotmoovs (MOOV) -$5 Million Market Cap
Dotmoovs closes the list of the top five M2E cryptos based on market cap. The app combines Artificial Intelligence (AI), blockchain, GPS, and NFTs to track and reward players for keeping fit. When you start exercising, Dotmoovs uses an AI referee to mitigate cheating and ensure fair rewards. Essentially, the system has a recorder for tracking player moves and comparing them with other players in the case of competition.
The app uses MOOV tokens to reward players for participating in Dance and Soccer tournaments and challenges. You can use the Moov points you earn to purchase in-game items or upgrade your avatars. You can trade MOOV on exchanges such as PancakeSwap, Uniswap, KuCoin, Gate.io, LATOKEN, Huobi Global, and BKEX.
The Future of Move-to-Earn Games
The enthusiasm around M2E apps, despite being a new web3 economic model, isn’t fading soon primarily because of their unique concepts that entice both crypto-native and non-native users. The M2E model is also easy to understand; hence, it’s meaningful to non-crypto native fitness enthusiasts as they earn from everyday physical exercises while learning about crypto.
In an era where being physically fit is at odds with daily routines, Move-to-Earn games motivate people to get off the sofa and exchange sweat and skill for crypto rewards. STEPN, Sweatcoin, Step App, Genopets, and Dotmoovs are the top five M2E cryptocurrencies by market cap, offering quality sports-based ability tests. Regardless of your geographical location or the training equipment you have access to, you can use your smartphone to participate in physical activities and receive crypto rewards.
Josiah is a tech evangelist passionate about helping the world understand Blockchain, Crypto, NFT, DeFi, Tokenization, Fintech, and Web3 concepts. His hobbies are listening to music and playing football. Follow the author on Twitter @TechWriting001