TL;DR: Basic Attention Token (BAT) rose green overnight during a decidedly bloody red 24 hour crypto market on news its parent company’s proprietary software was finally live. Brave 1.0 is the popular open-source browser’s years-long culmination of work, supposedly yielding greater online privacy, faster surfing speeds, and unique rewards program.
Brave 1.0 Open Source Browser Launches
The company’s blog post is filled with corporate-speak and phrasing from “next-generation to “unmatched.” The difference with Brave, however, is that it just might deliver. Its browser over the years has earned a solid reputation while trying to mind the gap between what online users claim to want versus their true habits.
Brave hopes to empower users with several opt-in features, which allows content creators and those who might be interested in reading or consuming to reframe their tricky relationship. It is simply a given now users expect to be tracked and monitored, often without their explicit consent or knowledge. It has become part of the digital age’s everyday reality.
“Today’s Internet is broken, and users suffer the most,” Brave co-founder and CEO Brenden Eich explained. “They are being tracked, tagged, and exploited; this not only violates privacy, but slows down page loads, drains batteries, and makes for a miserable experience. Meanwhile, publishers are losing revenue at a record pace due to a few gigantic super-companies and too many ad tech intermediaries. Advertisers are wasting time and money on an industry filled with fraud. Everyone with a legitimate stake in the open Web loses in this environment.”
Surveillance Capitalism has Plagued the Web for far too Long
It’s often hard to know how serious someone in Eich’s position is about such statements, and it is conversely easy to be cynical and view Brave as just a marketing gimmick. But even if it is, they’re serving a real function. “Surveillance capitalism has plagued the Web for far too long,” Eich, who was instrumental in helping to build Mozilla, continued, “and we’ve reached a critical inflection point where privacy-by-default is no longer a nice-to-have, but a must-have. Users, advertisers, and publishers have finally had enough, and Brave is the answer. Brave 1.0 is the browser reimagined, transforming the Web to put users first with a private, browser-based ads and payment platform. With Brave, the Web can be a rewarding experience for all, without users paying with their privacy.”
Brave 1.0, then, is its blockchain solution. It claims to have way more than 8.5 million monthly users, and they’re closing in on nearly half a million verified publishers on the platform. And the launch this week means users for desktop and Android are joined by those who prefer iOS and Apple generally. Brave natively blocks trackers and fingerprinting, and the company insists its approach helps users’ devices run faster. By default, Brave blocks or disables malware, embedded plugins. Browsing data stays with the user.
Specifically, the latest rollout touts three key features. Brave Rewards means users support content creators by using the company’s wallet feature, sending its native BAT as tips. The token has steadily climbed crypto markets, reaching the top 30 by capitalization, and in the last 24 hours has seen a nice pump on the launch. Brave Ads in turn pay users for their time, issued in BAT of course. Users opt-in to the advertisers they wish, and receive compensation. Brave Shields is its default blocking tool, and claims to load websites up to 6 times faster.
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