A less recognised web browser provider has a crazy idea: it's claiming to pay you to view ads. Brave is all the rage. Branded as the latest strategy to reward content creators, the platform blocks unwanted ads and enables tipping creators.
Brave browser's primary attraction is that it offers the opportunity to earn crypto for doing something you probably do almost daily - browse the web. But is it really as good as it sounds?
What is Brave?
Brave is a new, high speed and open-source internet browser that blocks ad links to the anonymous Tor network and entails cryptocurrency features. It consolidates with a cryptocurrency dubbed Basic Attention Token (BAT) as well as a privacy-focused browser for desktop and mobile.
The browser is already available for download. However, its unique, intriguing feature - the potential to earn BAT every time you click or view an ad - isn't available yet. Even with its main attraction still in development, the browser blocks unwanted trackers and apps.
It's Unique Selling Point (USP) is that it's fast and protects the user's privacy. Soon, it will even offer advertisement options in a way that doesn't collect and track user data and will reward users for watching ads.
How does Brave Work?
Brave's essential operation is the same as several other popular browsers. It's constructed on a similar framework as Google Chrome, coupled with similar functionality. Brave utilises standard browser functionality combined with its innovative strategy concerning advertising-supported websites. The beta version of Brave browser has a Brave Rewards ON/OFF switch that you can activate to suit your choice.
Basic Attention Token (BAT)
Brave browser's BAT aims to ease the way advertising works on the web. As opposed to using intermediaries, advertisers can place ads on the BAT Blockchain themselves.
BAT was innovated to disrupt the digital advertising space that is dominated by two giant tech companies, Facebook and Google. These two firms alone collect 73% of all ad revenue generated. Contrarily, trackers and ads cost internet users up to 50% of their mobile data monthly, violate privacy, and lower battery life.
Also, publishers receive only peanut-sized portions of ad revenue while advertisers agonise from ad blockers and click fraud. These are the issues that drive the team behind BAT to solve the existing situation in the market.
Transparency as a Remedy for Fraud
The BAT platform has built-in security that safeguards against fraud: a publicly accessible Blockchain. Since anyone can confirm the blockchain at any time, it will be a nightmare for fraudsters to utilise bots or other methods to wobble in ad revenue they don't deserve.
The Brave browser gathers detailed data regarding how users relate to Brave ads. This information enables Brave to “relate truly relevant ads to content from a standard that middlemen with third-party tracking and cookies are unable to attain,” according to the BAT white paper.
Channelling Ad Revenue to its Users
By using a smart contract, advertisers send ads together with a token payment in a locked form to browsers. When a Brave user views the ads, they're gaining a portion of that token payment, and the Brave browser also gets some of the token revenue. The remaining balances are then channelled to the publisher hosting the advertisement.
However, as mentioned earlier, if the users aren't interested in earning BAT, they can turn off ads instead. But who doesn't like freebies?
Benefits for Content Creators
Websites and creators that collaborate with BAT will be able to provide premium content to Brave users, accept BAT payments, and gather BAT donations for subscriptions.
Its creators also believe that the appropriate way to upgrade the entire internet is to seek an alternative way to support content creators outside of the traditional advertising model.
How much can You Earn from Viewing Brave Ads?
Brave Ads have just been launched and are available only in some countries, so it's a little bit difficult to make accurate estimations.
According to Brave's social media managers on Reddit, Brave Rewards will allow users to receive 70% of earned revenue generated by ads they viewed while the remaining 30% goes to the browser's developers.
If the figures Brave issued demonstrate an accurate projection of what advertisers will pay to place Brave Ads, users who opt-in to Brave Rewards could get a considerable reward for relating to an ad. To be more precise, participating users can earn roughly $60 to $70 this year (USD) and perhaps about $224 next year. And at the time of writing, 10 BAT is currently worth 2.76 NZD.
Of course, there's a big catch. You can't withdraw the tokens you've earned and exchange them into fiat money. At least not yet, anyway. Instead, Brave expects you to spend your virtual money on rewarding your favourite publishers on the internet, like Youtube personalities or news websites.
Again, there's a restriction intended to prohibit Brave users from rapidly racking up a tremendous amount of BAT. The Basic Attention Token (BAT) white paper stipulates that “ads served to users or browsers will also be rate-restricted and linked to active tabs and windows”. The Brave officials haven't yet publicly clarified the exact amount at which Brave browser users can claim Brave Rewards.
Spending and Trading BAT
There exist three primary ways to obtain BAT:
- Through a cryptocurrency exchange or retailer (like BitPrime! Available here.)
- From a BAT wallet. All BAT wallets can change Bitcoin and some altcoins automatically into BAT. The exchange process occurs in the background.
- Through Uphold. Uphold is a remittance service that uses BAT, Bitcoin, and several other altcoins. Supported payment methods include crypto-crypto exchanges and bank cards.
Once you transfer BAT into your Brave Browser BAT wallet, there's no option to withdraw it. At the moment, no other wallet is compatible with Brave. However, future updates will likely add withdrawal functionality. A BAT community manager said just that about a year ago on social media giant Reddit.
A Tour of Brave Browser's Interface
Brave provides a clean and refreshing interface that's relatively intuitive to utilise, with all of the factors you've come to expect in a web browser. Installing Brave is easy, just like any other browser, you download the installer and click through the wizard to set it up.
This image of the homepage you'll observe when you first open up Brave. Once you begin navigating to other sites, you'll be able to view how many trackers and ads were blocked here.
- Extensions. Being developed on Chromium enables you to use Chrome extensions in Brave.
- Privacy and security. Together with its blocking capabilities, the anti-tracking tools for Brave browser are among the best.
- Speed. Partially due to keeping trackers at bay, Brave is as fast as lightning.
- Interface. The Brave, open-source browser provides a simple, clean, and inherent interface.
- Brave Rewards. Opt-in ad display plus compensation program for Brave is undoubtedly controversial and a bit confusing, plus it isn't actually available...yet.
How Fast Is Brave Compared To the Competition?
Brave Web Browser is no doubt faster than Mozilla Firefox & Google Chrome. If you're a speed enthusiast, then you should consider shifting your site browser and buckling up.
Brave maintains that it leaves the competition beat when it comes to page loading speed. It has supported this statement with a series of demonstration videos, which are available in Brave's YouTube channel.
A full analysis of Brave's mobile speed analysis is available here.
Another attractive feature of the Brave browser is that it can open onion links on the anonymous Tor (The Onion Router) network. It's a free, anonymous version of the site that automatically mask its browsers usage habits and locations. The utilisation of encryption and hastening traffic across multiple distinct Tor servers achieves this.
Individuals living in tyrannical nations where the internet is strictly monitored can use Tor to outsmart governmental laws and restrictions. Some of the web's most recognised site have developed onion addresses to enhance this use case scenario. For instance, Facebook is accessible via Tor through hhfacebookcorewwwi.onion.
Who are the Talented Team behind Brave?
As opposed to most cryptocurrency projects, the talented team working behind Brave is already very well recognised in Silicon Valley where the dual co-founders branded themselves at Mozilla. In 2015, Brave's information security expert was described by Forbes as a “rising star” to recon with.
Brian Bondy-Co-founder & CTO: He is the founder and senior developer for Brave Software. He initially worked at Evernote, Mozilla and Khan Academy.
Yan Zhu-Chief Information Security Officer: Before joining Brave, Zhu worked AT Yahoo as a Security Engineer. She also assisted developed the web's architecture as a member of the W3C Technical Advisory Group. She is a holder of B.S in Physics from MIT despite dropping out of high school.
What's Next for Brave and Bat?
Earlier this year, Brave revealed that it was planning to launch Brave 1.0 before the end of 2019. The latest version will be situated on Chromium - the open-source web browser project that was begun by Google. The new version will display customisable themes plus faster and highly efficient ad blocking, including support for nearly all extension APIs and Chrome features.
Another advantage of the launch to Chromium will be reduced times between patches. Upgrades will be broken down from weeks to days.
The Bottom Line
Even with numerous primary blockchain features still in buildout, Brave is an attractive browser. It's seemingly faster than Firefox and Chrome according to specific metrics. Furthermore, it can connect to Tor, and it blocks ads.
Perhaps the most exciting thing about Brave currently is its competent leadership tech savvies. The brains behind Brave appear more than capable of disrupting the existing browser war. These are some of the same individuals that invented Mozilla Firefox and Netscape.
The future of Brave will likely depend on how the Brave Reward scheme operates. If Brave walks the talk on its ambitious promise to offer high-quantity clicks to advertisers while issuing considerable payouts to Brave Rewards users, it's easy to see how it could rapidly attract a vast user-base. On the other hand, if the Brave Reward programme turns out to be too restrictive or buggy, Brave may have an uphill task persuading people to migrate from popular browsers like Firefox or Chrome.
About the author:
Verolian Opiyo is a former teacher of English turned content strategist. He specialises in
writing about FinTech and next-generation technology.
The above references an opinion and is for informational purposes only. Do not take this as personalised financial or investment advice. The views expressed by the author do not necessarily represent the opinion of BitPrime.
Last updated: 18/09/2019