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OKX Backs JamboPhone, But Can $99 Crypto Phone Repeat Solana Saga Airdrop Bounty?

Last Updated May 23, 2024 8:12 AM
James Morales
Last Updated May 23, 2024 8:12 AM
By James Morales
Verified by Peter Henn

Key Takeaways

  • OKX has invested in Jambo, which will preinstall the OKX app on every JamboPhone.
  • The JamboPhone has been positioned as Aptos’ answer to the Solana Saga.
  • As things stand, however, DeFi on Aptos isn’t developed enough to support a Bonk-level memecoin.

Pitched as a budget crypto phone for emerging markets, when it went on sale earlier this year, the JamboPhone looked like it could be the Aptos ecosystem’s answer to the Solana Saga

Now, Jambo has received a strategic investment from the venture capital arm of OKX. As part of the deal, new devices will ship with the crypto exchange app preinstalled. But will the news do anything to invigorate an underwhelming airdrop scene?

Aptos vs Solana Airdrops

When Bonk exploded in value late last year, it generated significant profit for Solana Saga owners who had been airdropped the meme coin. 

Thanks to Bonk, Saga customers recovered more than the value of their device from tokens they received for free. And when MEW and MANEKI surged in April, it set the stage for the second edition of the Saga to pull off a similar feat

In recent weeks, JamboPhone users have also started to receive airdrops. These add to the rewards available via participation in various play-to-earn games on the Jambo App.

For committed Web3 gamers and airdrop hunters, it should be possible to make back the $99 it costs to buy a JamboPhone. But it’s hard to imagine an Aptos-based memecoin going meteoric like Bonk any time soon.

Aptos Memecoin Market Underdeveloped 

With a much less developed ecosystem, the total value locked (TVL) on Aptos dApps is dwarfed by that of Solana, whose TVL is more than 10 times higher.

The largest Solana-based DExs have, sometimes, recorded, daily trading volumes in excess of a billion dollars. In terms of DeFi activity, only Ethereum and BNB Chain can compete.

However, Aptos doesn’t currently have the DeFi liquidity needed to support a breakout meme coin.

Of course, that could change in the future. And at $99, plenty of Airdrop hunters will consider the JamboPhone a worthwhile gamble, especially considering recent APT price gains.

Ultimately, however, the new Aptos phone targets a different market.

Doubling Down on Emerging Markets

Commenting on the recent partnership with OKX, Jambo  Co-founder James Zhang emphasized the phone’s appeal in emerging markets. He said: “In many emerging markets, an entire family shares one smartphone and a family member can only use it for a few hours a day. Owning a JamboPhone opens up new possibilities.”

He added: “By embedding OKX directly within the Jambo ecosystem, we’re making it easy for users in emerging markets to safely and efficiently engage with the digital economy, [….] opening new pathways to economic participation that were previously unimaginable.”

In this context, a phone that pays for itself is appealing. That’s true, even if it does require hours of game time and a commitment to monetizing every micro-cap memecoin and NFT that comes your way.

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