Unstoppable Domains is a San-Francisco based company aiming to onboard the world onto the decentralized web. It has launched blockchain-based website domains which will allow users to replace cryptocurrency addresses with human-readable names, hosting decentralized websites, simplify crypto payments and much more.
As these domains are sold directly to the consumers (for a one-time fee), the product hopes to change cryptocurrency and shape the future of free internet. The company recently raised $4 million in series A funding led by Draper Associates and Boost VC, and have received grants from the Ethereum Foundation and Zilliqa Foundation.
Let’s take a closer look at how Unstoppable Domains operates, what it offers to customers, and what’s in store for the brand, in this detailed Unstoppable Domains review.
How does Unstoppable Domains work?
Unstoppable Domains provides direct access to .crypto domains within any browser, using Cloudfare’s infrastructure.
These domains are decentralized, which makes them seamless. Once a user claims a domain, they have absolute control over it. A domain can be transferred, updated or linked to other services without any interference from any company, not even Unstoppable Domains. No company or government can censor the content displayed on the website. Also, the company cannot deactivate, change or transfer a particular domain’s record without the consent of the user.
Matthew Gould, CEO of Unstoppable Domains is of the opinion that data breaches have become extremely commonplace in modern times. He says ”while privacy and ownership over an individual’s own digital assets is paramount, centralized control has been called into question by many forward-thinking people and companies”. The company aims at building a new system that is different, and puts the control “back where it should be, in the hands of the user”.
This adds a great advantage of security and privacy to the web while being harder to take down than traditional domains, according to the company.
Moreover, Unstoppable Domains can be used as a payment gateway for cryptocurrency payments, allowing cryptocurrency wallet owners to send and receive cryptocurrency payments using their .crypto domains. Hence, no need to memorize long, error-prone alphanumeric addresses to send and receive payments.
To receive a payment, a user just simply needs to inform their blockchain domain. These payments do not require an escrow agent to securely exchange the domain or funds. So this transfer can happen in less than a minute, from or to anywhere in the world.
These domains are blockchain agnostic and are supported both on the Ethereum blockchain and the Zilliqa blockchain.
The architecture behind Unstoppable Domains
Unstoppable Domains work on the Crypto Name Service (CNS). CNS is a set of Smart Contracts governed by the Ethereum Blockchain that define how domains are created and used. This may look like a traditional DNS system, but CNS has many architectural differences that change the interactions significantly. For example, the ownership of a CNS domain cannot be revoked. They cannot be reclaimed by Unstoppable Domains, so need no renewal.
A CNS is issued as an ERC-721 token. This made it easy to allow users to manage their domain ownership from any compatible wallet, exchange or marketplace, as developers could directly integrate with Unstoppable Domains.
The two main components of CNS are the Registry and Resolver smart contracts. The in-depth architecture can be found here.
Registry and Resolver
The registry is the most important part of the CNS. It defines ownership rules, how domains are minted, provides ERC-721 token metadata, and stores a metadata-enriched list of all domains.
- Owner address
- Approved operator address
- Resolver address
- Domain name
Resolver smart contract helps in resolving domains and storing domain records. Owners store their data such as cryptocurrency addresses, chat IDs, and IPFS hashes for decentralized websites in the Resolver.
How to own an Unstoppable Domain?
A domain can be owned in many different forms in a CNS.
It can be owned both by an external address, i.e., one that is accessed with a private key, or an internal address, i.e., a smart contract. Managing domains using smart contracts has opened up new ways to structure ownership. This includes governance of domain management by a multi-signature wallet. Or the ownership could be shared among a group of administrators. These are just two simple examples but there are many other possibilities.
Just like traditional domains, the Unstoppable domains do allow subdomains on your crypto-websites. These are subject to the same set of rules as second-level domains in CNS. They can be transferred or burned by a subdomain owner or a domain zone owner (the parent owner). This must be noted that only a direct domain owner holds the right to set a Resolver address and manage domain records.
If an owner wants to sell their domain, they may list the domain for sale on the Unstoppable Domains website, but the transaction is done through 3rd party websites. Users can add cryptocurrency addresses from the wallets they control and receive payments directly into them.
Blockchain domains are becoming rapidly popular and can potentially evolve the entire internet. Previously, the decentralized web could only be accessed through a browser plug-in. This new integration using DNS over HTTPS increases the accessibility of blockchain domains. This means that blockchain domains can now be treated the same way as traditional domains have been treated worldwide.
As of Feb 2021, over 500,000 blockchain domains have been registered via Unstoppable Domains.
Hope you found this Unstoppable Domains review useful. Head over to ItsBlockchain to discover more detailed guides and curated lists.
Hitesh Malviya is the Founder of ItsBlockchain. He is one of the most early adopters of blockchain & cryptocurrency enthusiast in India. After being into space for a few years, he started IBC in 2016 to help other early adopters learn about the technology.
Before IBC, Hitesh has founded 4 companies in the cyber security & IT space.
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