- I bought my first NFT on OpenSea, the largest online marketplace for the digital assets.
- But the process was a headache, from buying crypto to figuring out how to connect all the apps.
- And on top of that, now I don’t know what to do with my new NFT.
There’s a $2,000 digital photo frame on the market that allows you to display your NFT art in your home.
The price is ridiculous, but its purpose became more understandable after I decided to buy my first NFT — just for fun.
After purchasing cryptocurrency and transferring it to a digital crypto wallet, and hitting roadblock after roadblock, I finally became the proud new owner of a 14-second animated cartoon of a pig set against a flashing background of colors to the tune of electronic dance music.
And now I have no clue what to do with it.
It’s a weird feeling, since NFTs are all the rage right now in the decentralized tech world. There may be some potential real-world use for them, but at the moment, they’re being used mostly as speculative assets, including in the art world.
So all I can hope for is that it appreciates in value — but it’s still not worth the absolute headache I got from going through this friction-filled process.
You have to jump through a few hoops before you can even start exploring NFTs
You can’t just go to OpenSea and buy an NFT. First, you have to open a crypto wallet and buy crypto.
I went with Coinbase Wallet. Lots of OpenSea users also go with MetaMask, another of the dozen or so wallets that the platform supports. The process was surprisingly easy — the Coinbase Wallet app simply allowed me to connect my bank account via my Chase Bank app.
Once I was verified and got my bank account connected, it was time to buy some crypto — but in the Coinbase app, not the Coinbase Wallet app (confusing, I know.) Ether is the most popular virtual coin used to transact on the Ethereum blockchain-based OpenSea, so I opted for that.
But I couldn’t immediately use my ether outside of the Coinbase app. I had to wait seven days.
So I tried MetaMask to see if it would be quicker.
I put all of my information in, only for the browser to inform me that Texas (where I live ) isn’t supported by Wyre, the payment platform that MetaMask uses.
7 days later …
Time to use my ether on OpenSea! Should be quick, right? Not exactly.
I knew I had to connect OpenSea to my Coinbase Wallet, but the OpenSea app didn’t present that as an option. The only options were MetaMask, Trust wallet, Rainbow, and a field to enter an ethereum address.
So…..where is my ethereum address?
To the Google. A helpful guide from Coinbase actually popped up in the search results, telling me to go to the Coinbase Wallet app, click Receive, and then an address pops up for me to copy and input into OpenSea.
That’s when I realized you can’t buy NFTs on OpenSea’s mobile app — you can only sift through them like an art gallery (*headache intensifies.*)
The Verge had some useful commentary on why that might be, like OpenSea perhaps not wanting to cough up the 30% share of in-app transactions that Apple and Google take through their app stores.
I opened OpenSea on my laptop and attempted to connect my Coinbase Wallet … only for
to inform me that the Coinbase Wallet app wasn’t compatible. This part may be my own personal error, but I then had to spend an hour or so updating my computer and reinstalling Chrome so that I could download the extension.
By this point, I was exhausted. I had only bought about $50 worth of ether, so I searched for an NFT in that price range. Enter my raving pig friend.
But it wasn’t as simple as shelling out the 0.0179 ether — there were so-called network fees worth $50 that made it more expensive to buy. So I had to go back to Coinbase, buy more ether, transfer it to my Coinbase Wallet, and then buy the NFT.
Grand total? $103.25.
So … now what?
I could buy the $2,000 digital photo frame. Or I could have a video print made of it.
But, of course, I won’t do either. All I can do is hope that Rave Pigs, the NFT collection that my new artwork is a part of, explodes in popularity, much as Bored Ape Yacht Club has. The collection has surpassed $1 billion in sales.
In the meantime, I’ll be counting my blessings that I’ll never have to start this process from scratch ever again.