Key Takeaway: The NEAR Protocol is a far more advanced Layer 1 smart contract platform than Fantom Opera. NEAR has built-in sharding features, which is infinitely more scaleable than Fantom's consensus mechanism.

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Is NEAR better than Fantom?

The NEAR protocol has exploded on the scene in 2022 and is touted to be the next major Layer 1 protocol. The hype is underpinned by their unique sharding design, that allows them to scale with infinite chains across the network.

Fantom on the other-hand was popular throughout 2021, however has started to slow down in growth and Total Value Locked on-chain. The table below provides a high-level overview for a quick comparison.

Near Protocol

NEAR Protocol

Network Validators 120 5
Block Time 0.2 Seconds 0.4 Seconds
Consensus Mechanism Proof of Stake (POS) Proof of Stake (POS) - DAG
EVM Compatible Image Image
Secure Bridging Image Image
Transaction Fees $0.02 $0.001
DeFi Ecosystem Near Protocol DeFi Fantom DeFi ecosystem review
Overall Rating Near Protocol overall rating Fantom overall rating
Website Visit Near Protocol Visit Fantom

NEAR Protocol Scaling vs Fantom

NEAR Protocol has the best scaling design out of all Layer 1 platforms. Their sharding mechanism allows for other smart contract platforms, or Layer 2's, to deploy on-top of NEAR to facilitate fast and cheap transfers. The first chain to deploy on NEAR is called Aurora, which gained over $1 Billion in total-value locked in a matter of weeks.

Fantom on the other-hand is a reasonably simple fork of GETH with a small set of validators, which makes transactions on the network incredibly fast. However, this does not scale well when there is a high demand for transactions and has cause scaling and throttling issues for the network before.

With that said, we firmly believe NEAR Protocol has the superior long-term prospects to scale.

Is DeFi better on NEAR or FTM?

As at time of writing, the DeFi ecosystem on Fantom is a little more built out with hundreds applications on the network. With that said, a lot of them have very little TVL and have shown a propensity to 'rug-pull' or completely exit-scam their investors.

NEAR Protocol on the other hand has very few DeFi applications, but they are all incredibly secure and backed by the largest investors in the crypto space. We recommend checking out the most popular money-market and lending app on Aurora called Bastion Protocol.

Bastion Protocol on Aurora (NEAR).

Best NFT Marketplaces on NEAR Protocol and FTM

Both NEAR Protocol and Fantom are not really known for their NFT ecosystems. NFTs are generally more popular on chains like Ethereum mainnet, Avalanche and Solana. With that said, here is a shortlist of NFT Marketplaces on NEAR and FTM:

Near Protocol NFT Marketplaces:

Fantom NFT Marketplaces:

How to Transfer Tokens to NEAR and Fantom

If you are looking to transfer assets to the NEAR Protocol or Fantom Opera Network from Ethereum or another Layer 1 - you will need to use a bridge. For more information we recommend you check out our guides on how to bridge to NEAR from ETH, and how to bridge to FTM.

Final Thoughts

NEAR Protocol and Fantom Opera Network are both incredibly innovative Layer 1 Protocols, with their own advantages and disadvantages. NEAR offers scalability that no other protocol can match with its sharding feature, while Fantom operates on a DAG-based consensus algorithm which is much faster than Ethereum’s PoS.

When it comes to DeFi and NFTs, we believe NEAR Protocol and Fantom are both great options but each will have its own unique advantages. Ultimately, it comes down to the user’s preference and which project they feel more comfortable with.

We also recommend keeping track of both projects as they are both incredibly innovative, and could potentially be the future of blockchain technology.

Andrew Chen is a lead editor and auditor of content for Buy Bitcoin Bank, with a Masters of Computer Science and extensive knowledge in cryptocurrency and blockchain technology. He has helped ensure the accuracy and quality of the platform's educational resources for new and experienced investors in the crypto space.