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What is the NATIX Network Smartphone Strategy?

What is the NATIX Network Smartphone Strategy?

Smartphone DePIN App NATIX

When we created the NATIX Network, in one of the first meetings we had to decide what was the best way to deliver the product to the users. Looking at projects around we saw quite a few building their hardware and made up our minds on changing the game, bringing DePIN to smartphones.

With over 60k registered app users in less than a year, NATIX is one of the fastest-growing DePINs in the world (according to Messari). Today, we would like to share some of our core values that led to the NATIX Network's success and dive deeper into why your trusty smartphone is a game-changer in the realm of decentralized infrastructure and Web3.

The Smartphone Revolution

You might wonder, "What's the big deal with smartphones at NATIX?" It's time to recognize that your smartphone is no ordinary gadget. It's not just for selfies and social media; it's a powerhouse of potential. With over 1.5 billion smartphones worldwide equipped with AI-accelerated chips (and GPS, camera, LIDAR, Gyroscope, etc.), we're talking serious game-changing tech here.

DePIN Smartphone

Several reasons made us insist on opting for smartphones, rather than building new hardware. Building a mobile app drastically increases the scalability, completely nullifies initial onboarding costs, and even the hurdles are overcome when employing the latest technological innovations. Let’s dive into it.

Smartphones Have Unmatched Scalability Potential

The NATIX Network is a DePIN (Decentralized Physical Infrastructure Network), and it relies on its users to generate data en masse to support other projects or new utilities for the benefit of the users. For DePINs, what matters most is first of all growth to effectively compete with traditional Web2 infrastructure players. In just 11 weeks after the launch of Drive&, NATIX has mapped 3x more than Google Maps, 8.6x more than Mapillary, and 6.6x more than Hivemapper. When it comes to network growth, you simply can’t compete with the potential of the smartphone.

With approximately 1.5 billion smartphones around the globe advanced enough to become a node in our decentralized infrastructure, smartphones are the golden road to scalability. All it takes is downloading an app, and we have the potential to tap into every smartphone out there faster than you can say "innovation."

Your Smartphone is a Pocket-sized Supercomputer

Your smartphone isn't just smart; it's downright brilliant, and the best part is that most smartphones sold past 2016 are equipped with AI chips onboard. NATIX is an AI-powered solution, so building a product that utilizes the smartphone’s AI capabilities was a no-brainer. From machine learning algorithms to advanced image processing, your smartphone is our secret weapon.

Data storage is another element the smartphone holds a solution to. With forecasts predicting that we will be generating 181 zettabytes of data in 2025, how do we store and use the data? You’ve probably heard of cloud solutions, but forget about the cloud; the real action is happening at the edge. “Edge Computing” is the concept of processing data closer to where it is generated. Simply put, it’s a mini-brain digesting the data at the source of it. With the smartphone’s superior computing powers, we're bringing that power right to your fingertips.

Building hardware with equal AI and computing capabilities is possible but that results in an expensive device, and especially with the current chip shortage, it's more challenging than one might think. Hardware-based solutions are often bottlenecked by supply chain and logistic challenges.

Edge Computing leads to lightning-fast decisions processed in real-time, lower bandwidth consumption, and since the data is digested on your device, private data does not leave your device. Edge Computing is a game-changer for Internet of Things and autonomous tech, with the autonomous driving industry being a great advocate of the technology. Why? Autonomous vehicles instantly process data to make split-second decisions.

All Utilities in One Place

NATIX Driver Assistance Features

We’ve talked about the smartphone so far only as a means to collect data, but it is also the recipient. Think of your smartphone as a Swiss Army knife of possibilities: Navigation, dashcam capabilities, real-time alerts, parking availability, and more, your smartphone is ready for anything. We're completely transforming your driving experience, and our users help us build it – by the users for the users.

Additionally, driver assistant features such as navigation and parking finder can be powered by the geospatial data that drivers generate hence leveraging the power of “Network Effects.” This “network effect” approach is quite powerful as it creates a flywheel effect where the more drivers we have in the network, the more data they generate and the better the driver-assistant application gets. This will naturally attract more drivers to the ecosystem to use high-quality services such as navigation and parking.

Last but not least, such Network Effect applications enable the network's supply side (the drivers) to actively contribute to the demand side (data consumption), thereby fostering a self-sustaining economy.

NATIX Network Flywheel

Everyone Has Access and Anyone Can Join

We believe in inclusivity. When opting for a smartphone-led strategy we first thought of our users, who can’t always afford to purchase dedicated hardware. Hardware-based DePINs require users to buy their products and earn crypto rewards. People don’t buy smartphones to earn crypto, in a mobile-based DePIN the return on investment is already there.

That is why we ditched fancy hardware and embraced smartphones that are already in the hands of billions worldwide. We’re bringing Web3 innovation to everyone. It's easy, it's entirely free, it’s greener, and it's changing the game. No need for expensive hardware or complicated setups, just grab your smartphone and join the revolution.

Join DePin App with your smartphone

Challenges and Solutions of a Mobile DePIN

It all sounds obvious until now, begging the question of why everyone doesn’t commit to a smartphone strategy. Here are some myths that might make some companies refrain from building a mobile-based DePIN, and how we solve them: 

  • Positional (location) accuracy: Some claim that the GPS in your phone isn’t accurate enough for high-quality mapping. Employing techniques like RTK-based correction can achieve cm-level accuracy, even in dense urban environments. Android phones with GPS L1/L5 excel here. Web2 and DePIN projects (e.g. Geodnet) are working on providing such RTK infrastructure. Also, in the absence of RTK-based infrastructure,  added data from cellular, WiFi, etc. can further improve the localization accuracy up to the sub-meter level. You can find more information in Google’s recent work.
  • Retention: In theory, a “set and forget” hardware could provide a better retention rate than an app that requires active setup before each drive. By combining driver-assistance features (e.g. dashcam, navigation, etc…) with gamification features, and tailor-made app notifications, we multiplied user retention rates by up to 5x! Given the 10-100x higher scalability of a mobile-based DePIN compared to hardware-based ones, our strategy is hard to compete with.
  • Overheating: We are aware that older smartphones and usage of smartphones in sunny regions might lead to overheating. We are constantly working to optimize the app’s smartphone sensors and AI processor usage. Sometimes, a different phone placement on the dashboard is enough.
  • Collect consistent image size (at smartphone level) – NATIX collects real-time dynamic geospatial data and is not a street-level imagery project. However, smartphones are still a strong candidate for this as previously seen from web2 pioneers such as Mapillary. By tapping into the camera sensor directly, one can collect a standard image dimension across all phones. In a few years, generative AI models will be able to fill the gaps in terms of non-standard imagery. 
  • Privacy: Dealing with the Internet of Cameras and accessing users’ smartphones creates the fear that the data we collect overlaps with private user data. With our proprietary AI solution combined with Edge Computing, we made sure NATIX anonymizes data and strips it of any private data – by design.

Looking Ahead

So, what's next for NATIX and the smartphone revolution? Well, the future is looking brighter than ever. We're not just mapping streets, we're mapping the environment, leading the future of connectivity and innovation one smartphone at a time. Thanks to our amazing community, we’re on our way to becoming one of the biggest DePIN projects out there. 

At the end of the day, we're building a decentralized infrastructure that's faster, smarter, greener, and more accessible than ever before, enhancing the possibilities your smartphones offer. You’re all welcome to join us on this epic journey into the world of DePINs and Web3.

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