Businesses and Internet users should be interested in the ongoing Web2 vs. Web3 debate that is taking place among technology experts, web users, and developers.
While there are new tools like Artificial Intelligence that will significantly impact the performance and features of Web3, the underlying philosophies driving Web3 are decentralization, security, and, most of all, privacy.
Some believe Web3 will never fully replace Web2, and others are certain that Web3 is the future of the Internet. This post will explore the differences between web2 and web3.
It is not time for your business to fully transition to Web3. Still, it is essential to be aware of the emerging trends and begin positioning yourself for the potential new future of the Internet so your business can be an early adopter.
Let’s start by understanding our terms.
What Is Web2?
Web2 is the current version of the Internet that everyone uses. If you’re reading this blog post, you are on web2. Web1 was a simple content delivery network. Pages were static, and there was little to no interactive content.
Web2 radically transformed the Internet with rich, interactive content. In addition to increased user interaction, one of the hallmarks of Web2 is the user-generated content that people post to social media networks like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, etc.
While these social media services have radically changed our lives in ways that were unimaginable 20 years ago, there are obvious privacy and security problems with Web2. Big tech companies, like Meta and Google, essentially have complete control over online data.
Meta, Google, and a few other major tech companies act as a de facto central authority over Web2. This makes many people uncomfortable. It has led to legal questions from citizens and governments alike. In addition, it has led to a push for a decentralized web.
What Is Web3?
Web3, also known as semantic web, is the potential future of the World Wide Web built on decentralized networks. In addition to privacy and decentralization, Web 3.0 aims to deliver a data-driven User Interface that delivers a unique experience to every user.
Blockchain technology is central to Web 3.0. Blockchain technologies empower decentralized applications. Decentralized apps buck a central authority and give users complete control and ownership over their data, which is very attractive to many users.
Web 3.0 does not rely on centralized servers to store and process data like Web 2.0. Web3 utilizes the distributed ledgers of blockchain technology over a decentralized network to deliver a more secure, private, and transparent version of the Internet.
If widely adopted, Web3 could radically transform how we access data, complete transactions, and give people data ownership rights and greater control over the operation of the Internet. As the adoption of Web3 grows, the role of Web3 marketing agencies will likely expand, shaping the future of decentralized and user-centric digital marketing approaches.
Comparing Web 2.0 and Web 3.0
The significant difference between web2 and web3 is a decentralized structure vs. centralized entities with near total control. However, if this were the only difference, you would expect Web 3.0 to already be widely adopted.
While there is vast potential for Web3 to be widely successful, there are also good reasons why some experts dismiss this approach to the web and think it will never catch on. Still, others think Web3 might coexist alongside Web2 yet never usurp it.
Let’s take a closer look at how Web 2.0 compares to Web 3.0 on the following points to get a better idea of how these two concepts compare:
- Ease of use
Ease of Use
The most significant barrier standing in the way of Web 3.0 is the complexity of the underlying technologies. Web 3.0 is far more complex than Web 2.0, making it harder for regular people to understand and effectively use.
Yes, Web 3.0 offers a lot of exciting possibilities, and people would love to have ownership over their data. However, if the technology is too complex or difficult to understand, people will shy away from it. This is an issue for Web 3.0. Web 2.0 is simple to use and understand.
Transactions, data transfers, etc., are significantly slower on Web 3.0 than on Web 2.0. Web 2.0 utilizes unique web addresses, HTTP, and centralized servers to quickly scan for information.
Due to decentralization, transactions and changes to data states are slower. In Web 3.0, since information is decentralized, changes to data need to be processed and propagated across the distributed ledger.
Speed is a serious issue for Web3. Businesses and consumers do not want to drastically slow the speed of transactions or data changes. This slowdown flies in the face of the convenience that Web 2.0 provides and society has grown accustomed to.
If Web 3.0 has speed issues now when it is not widely adopted, imagine how much worse speed would be when more transactions are taking place.
Web 3.0 is far more secure than Web 2.0. Centralized entities are far more susceptible to data breaches and cyber attacks than decentralized networks. In addition to limiting the potential for hacks and breaches, Web3 significantly limits the potential for fraud through the use of smart contracts.
Digital security is vital to businesses and consumers. Web3 delivers a vastly improved security experience compared to Web2.
Web 2.0 is far more stable and mature than Web 3.0. Instability can significantly harm business operations and create consumer mistrust. Web2 offers a stable experience that people are already familiar with. Web3 is still evolving and finding its footing.
While this period of growth for Web3 is exciting and presents opportunities for innovation, it is also an unstable time and can negatively impact online services and other processes.
Web 3.0 offers greater transparency than Web 2.0. Many users agree that they want to know how their data is being used, monetized, and who has access to it. On Web 2.0, big tech companies obfuscate this information and are secretive about how they monetize user data.
Web3 promises a transparent online experience that gives users control over who has access to their data and how it is used. It also enables users to potentially monetize their data and choose which aspects of their data they want to share.
Web 2.0 is widely used by the world at large, while Web 3.0 is trying to find its place in the world. If your business wants to reach the largest audience, it needs to go where the people are, and right now, that is Web2.
Web3 is being adopted but at a far more gradual pace than Web2. The complexities and speed-related issues of Web3 are standing in the way of it being widely adopted. Many tech experts argue these issues will prevent Web3 from ever being widely adopted in the manner Web2 is currently.
However, if these issues could be effectively addressed, Web3 could potentially replace Web2 very quickly. Yet, it should be noted that these issues are not simple to fix, and the issue of speed specifically is related to the underlying decentralization vital to Web3.
Web3 is far more volatile than Web2 since it relies on blockchain technology, which is often coupled with cryptocurrency. The wild fluctuations in cryptocurrency scare many businesses and consumers.
There is risk in cryptocurrency investment, and for many businesses, this risk is too significant. Web 3.0 suffers from this volatility, and it is another barrier to widespread adoption.
Now is not the time for your business to abandon Web2 in favor of Web3. Web3 is not yet ready for widespread adoption, but that doesn’t mean this will always be true. Your business should begin considering ways it could utilize Web3 to deliver new experiences to its users.
If you want to learn more about Web 3.0 and how your business can begin preparing for a future where this is the standard version of the Internet, contact an experienced HiTech development partner like Koombea.