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Guides

What Is Unstoppable Domains And How Does It Work?

by Joel Agbo -

Notwithstanding the numerous benefits of using blockchain infrastructures for routine financial transactions; one thing that easily puts you off is having to copy a long chain of numbers and letters as your recipients’ wallet (public) address. Double-checking lessens the error margin, but this adds to the stress of executing a simple transaction and still leaves a tangible chance of transferring funds to the wrong address in a mix-up. In a quite popular incident, a Redditor had reportedly sent 800 bitcoins to the wrong address in 2014. A shortened and easily memorable public address saves this, easily.

Since its inception in 2018, Unstoppable Domains has reportedly registered over 2.5 million addresses. Unstoppable Domains' decentralized name service technology lets you create self-owned unique public addresses that are easy to recollect. Unstoppable Domains replace your lengthy wallet address with a fun name and a crypto-centric domain extension. Names like Yourname.blockchain and yournickname.bitcoin can be used in place of the 37 hexadecimal characters that make up a bitcoin wallet address. Over 300 decentralized applications (dApps), wallets, and cryptocurrency exchanges currently support Unstoppable Domains wallet address service.

Unstoppable Domains simplify cryptocurrency transactions, but its utility goes beyond this. Privacy-oriented web browser – Brave, announced a collaboration with Unstoppable Domains that allows brave users on desktop and Android platforms have access to 30,000 decentralized websites and 700,000 blockchain domain names registered with Unstoppable Domains using search bars integrated into the browser. Unstoppable Domains websites are also supported on Opera mini browser.

This means that Unstoppable Domains’ addresses double as cryptocurrency wallet addresses and a properly hosted internet resource site. Unstoppable Domain websites can be uploaded to the InterPlanetary File system (IPFS), a decentralized and collaborative webpage delivery technology. 

 

How do Unstoppable Domains work?

Unstoppable Domains leverage non-fungible tokens (NFT) and smart contract technologies to deliver a truly self-owned and controlled internet domain. In fact, your Unstoppable Domains addresses are proper NFTs and are built on the Crypto Name Service (CNS) technology.

Crypto Name Service protocol guides the creation of blockchain domain names. Unstoppable Domains issue decentralized domains as NFTs. These issued NFTs are of ERC-721 standards. ERC-721 standard NFTS allows the implementation of an ideal API for NFTs within smart contracts and provides basic functionality to transfer and track these NFTs.

Adopting an easily trackable and transferrable NFT standard for domain issuance simplifies the integration of Unstoppable Domains into other decentralized applications and allows domain owners to manage their domains from compatible exchanges, wallets, marketplaces, and DeFi infrastructures.

Functionality of the crypto name service protocol is guided by two smart contracts: The Registry smart contract and The Resolver smart contract.

CNS smart contracts schema

Registry contract controls the minting and ownership of new crypto domains and sub-domains. Unstoppable Domains translate the chosen address name into a domain name, and the registry smart contract pushes this domain from the database onto the public ledger of the blockchain where the domain is being created. This process is completely decentralized, and third-party (including Unstoppable Domains) influence is resisted.

The Resolver contract translates the chosen domain name into a cryptocurrency wallet address when executing transactions. This is done under the hood. The transaction is made to the resolved address (already produced by the domain owner). The resolver contract also controls the storage of domain records. Multiple signatory function is available on Unstoppable Domains; a domain can be managed by a group of administrators or multi-signature wallets.

Unstoppable Domains addresses can be currently minted on Ethereum, Polygon, and Zilliqa blockchains. Domain minting on Polygon blockchain went live in the last quarter of 2021.

 

How to buy Unstoppable Domains: Step-By-Step Guide

Buying a domain from Unstoppable Domains is pretty simple. Here’s a detailed guide on the process.

1. Create an Unstoppable domain account

Visit Unstoppable Domain’s website and click on Sign up/Log in. Connect using your wallet by clicking Connect wallet and following the prompts from your wallet. You can also create an account with your email; select Continue with email to create your Unstoppable domain account.

2. Search for a domain

To search for available domains, go to your homepage. And click Find the perfect one from the center of your homepage or get a new domain. Search your preferred domain name on the search bar to see available domains and costs. Domains for sale are indicated, to purchase, click Contact owner to discuss ownership transfer.

To initiate the purchase process Add chosen domain to your Cart. Visit your Cart to Checkout. Select a preferred payment method and complete payment to purchase the domain. A deadline is given for payment, ensure to pay the stated amount before the deadline.

3. Mint your Unstoppable Domain

The domain minting process pushes your domains from Unstoppable Domains’ database onto the blockchain and subsequently, into your cryptocurrency wallet. Minting a domain gives you full custody over the domain name.

Your purchased domain will appear under the My Domains section of your profile. Click the Free Mint button over the domain you wish to mint. Enter your 2FA verification code. Choose how to connect your wallet. Initiate the domain minting process by confirming and signing the transaction from your wallet. 

4. Add your wallet address(es) to your Unstoppable Domain

To use your purchased domain for receiving or sending cryptocurrencies, add your wallet addresses to your domain.

Visit your domain section on My Domains and Click on Manage. Copy and paste your cryptocurrency addresses into the correct field and complete the process by saving and signing the transaction on your Wallet.

You can easily transfer or sell your Unstoppable domain. To Transfer your Domain:

Go to your domain management tab, and click the Transfer tab to enter a wallet address to send the domain. Ensure that address is hosted on Unstoppable Domain-supported wallets.

Like any other NFT, you can sell your Unstoppable Domains on NFT marketplaces like OpenSea or Rarible. Create an account on a preferred marketplace and list your Domain for sale.

 

Unstoppable Domain vs ENS

Decentralized domains and wallet naming services are becoming quite popular. The concept has seen explosive growth in the last few years. Unstoppable Domain and Ethereum Name Services (ENS) are arguably the two most popular crypto domain services and share lots of similarities. Similar to Unstoppable Domains, ENS also creates censorship-resistant decentralized websites. In addition, ENS also allows you register DNS (Domain Name Service) names you already own as ENS addresses.

ENS, however, is only available on the Ethereum blockchain and uses the .eth domain extension. Unstoppable Domains can be minted on Ethereum, Zilliqa, and Polygon blockchains and presents more domain extension options like .nft, .zil,.crypto, and .blockchain. In addition, a few other differences exist in their governance, domain purchase and expiration, and mode of operation.

Governance

Unlike Unstoppable Domains; Ethereum Name Service operates a DAO. Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs) are a systemic design structured to ensure general and undiluted participation of the members of an organization. In cryptocurrency communities, rights to this participation are tokenized and every token holder is considered a member of the DAO. Through voting portals, members of the DAO are able to vote on proposals and also submit their improvement suggestions to be voted on by the rest of the holders.

In the last quarter of 2021, ENS airdropped its governance token (ENS) to its users. ENS holders can submit and vote on proposals on the ENS governance portal. A user will need about 100,000 ENS tokens to submit a proposal. Proposal subjects are limitless and can span across every aspect of the project including technology, politics, and financial management. If a proposal gains a majority vote, it is passed and implemented. in contrast, Unstoppable Domains has yet to develop a similar infrastructure and has been accused of being centralized in the past.

Domain payment and expiration

Unstoppable Domains ownership lasts a lifetime. Once a user completes the initial purchase process for their domain, the domain name and address are valid forever. No renewal fees after the first payment. For ENS domains, a recurring payment structure prevails. Domain owners have to select a time span for the validity of their domain. To retain their domain, a renewal fee is paid on or before the validity period elapses.

Purchasing Unstoppable Domains is further simplified by the array of payment options including PayPal and credit card payment support. Whereas for ENS  Ethereum blockchain is the only available payment option. Considering the situational increase in Ethereum transaction fees, Unstoppable Domains are cheaper alternatives in terms of transaction costs.

Mode of operation

Ethereum Name Service (ENS) operates a  ‘public oriented’ system. ENS is an open-source protocol. Access to the codebase is open to external developers. The ENS DAO facilitates decentralization and community participation in the project's governance while the open-source protocol allows technical contributions from the developers’ community. 

On the other hand, Unstoppable Domains is a profit-making company. It is "brand protected" to prevent unscrupulous individuals from owning specific names, words, and phrases. There are many complaints online regarding people prevented from creating domains with their names. In this regard, the Unstoppable Domains' code is not open like ENS.

 

Final Thoughts

With the growth of Web3 and decentralized technology, Crypto Name Services are poised to get more popular and prominent. Unstoppable Domains present a low entry barrier into the decentralized domain concept. However, this is relative. Consider other factors such as ease of use, available support system, and wallet/browser compatibility before choosing a decentralized domain service.

Related: What is Ethereum Name Service (ENS) And How Does It Work?

FAQs

Are Unstoppable Domains safe and secure?

Unstoppable Domains’ infrastructures are proofed and only point to the wallet address provided by the domain owners. The resolver contract that controls the wallet resolution process is carefully programmed to ensure no errors. If the domain owner provides the right address for their domain, transactions to the right domain address will execute the transaction without errors. Domain owners also have complete control over what is publicly shown by the name service. Personal details will only be shared when authorized by the domain owner(s).

How decentralized are Unstoppable Domains?

The registry smart contract does not have an administrator, as a result, the transfer and management of created domains can only be done by the domain owner(s) or with their permission. Unstoppable Domain addresses are hosted on the blockchain and the services are built using blockchain protocols.

Joel Agbo

Joel Agbo

Joel loves discussing cryptocurrency and blockchain technology. He is the founder of CryptocurrencyScripts. Follow the author on Twitter @agboifesinachi

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