Cardano (ADA) Maintains Lead in Crypto Development, DeFi Sector Surges

Last Updated: 28 December 2023

Cryptocurrency enthusiasts witnessed an interesting turn of events in the development arena, as Cardano ($ADA) outshone its competitors, including Polkadot ($DOT) and Kusama ($KSM), in the latest data from on-chain analytics firm Santiment. This report explores the significance of Cardano’s top position, delving into development activity metrics and the booming decentralized finance (DeFi) sector on the Cardano network.

Cardano Secures Top Spot in Development Activity


In the dynamic landscape of blockchain development, Cardano has emerged as a frontrunner, surpassing rivals such as Polkadot and Kusama. Santiment’s data, focusing on “development activity,” reveals the amount of work completed by Cardano’s developers on the project’s public GitHub repositories within the past 30 days.

Unique Development Activity Metric

Santiment’s metric stands out by emphasizing “events” rather than the total number of commits. This approach provides a more precise representation of developers’ actual work, avoiding inaccuracies that may arise when measuring development activity solely by commits. The metric considers various actions on GitHub repositories, such as committing code, forking repositories, or creating issues.

Exploring Cardano’s Development Landscape

Exponential Growth

Cardano’s development landscape has experienced exponential growth throughout the year. According to IOG’s weekly development report, 152 projects have been launched, with 1,307 currently in progress on the Cardano platform. The network has facilitated a remarkable 79.7 million transactions, showcasing a surge in adoption and utilization.

Token Metrics

The report also delves into token metrics, revealing that 9.1 million native tokens circulate within the Cardano ecosystem, governed by 81,621 token policies. Notably, the deployment of Plutus scripts—a set of tools for smart contract development—has reached 6,260 for version 1 and 4,981 for version 2, underscoring Cardano’s steady progress in smart contract deployment and execution.

Cardano’s DeFi Sector Soars

Total Value Locked

Simultaneously, the decentralized finance (DeFi) sector on the Cardano network has witnessed remarkable growth. The total value locked in Cardano’s DeFi protocols recently surpassed the $400 million mark, reflecting a surge of over 9% in the last seven days and an impressive 150% increase throughout the year.

Adoption and Utilization

The surge in DeFi activity aligns with Cardano’s increasing adoption and utilization. The network’s native token, ADA, has played a pivotal role in this growth, gaining over 150% in value this year.

Optimism Enters Top 10

In the realm of cryptocurrency development, Optimism ($OP) has made a notable entry into the top 10 cryptocurrencies by development activity, according to Santiment. This further highlights the dynamic nature of the crypto space and the continuous evolution of prominent projects.


As we wrap up 2023, Cardano stands tall as a leader in cryptocurrency development, with a thriving DeFi sector and a robust ecosystem. The platform’s commitment to innovation and its growing developer community position it as a key player in the ever-expanding blockchain landscape.

As we navigate the closing chapters of 2023, Cardano stands as an undisputed leader in the dynamic realm of cryptocurrency development. With a flourishing DeFi sector and a resilient ecosystem, Cardano’s commitment to innovation and its burgeoning developer community underscore its pivotal role in the continually expanding blockchain landscape. For astute investors seeking opportunities within the thriving crypto space, platforms like Bitcoin Billionaire and Financial Peak offer a gateway to explore and engage with the diverse array of digital assets shaping the future of finance.

  • Steven Gray

    Steven Gray is an experienced cryptocurrency and blockchain journalist with over 7 years of reporting on the crypto industry across major publications. His proficiency in technical analysis provides him the skills to evaluate complex trading algorithms and AI systems. Steven leverages his extensive network of academics and finance professionals to incorporate expert opinions into his unbiased analyses.

    Known for his engaging yet objective writing style, Steven keeps readers informed without hype. His rare blend of crypto domain knowledge, trading acumen, impartiality, and communication skills makes him an ideal author for in-depth reviews of innovations across the cryptocurrency and financial technology sectors.

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