Algorand Sparks Controversy with Bold Ad Critiquing Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Solana

The Rise of Algorand’s Provocative Advertisement

The foundation behind layer-1 blockchain Algorand has attracted mixed feelings over a new ad that takes a big swipe at rival networks Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Solana — suggesting they are not suitable for payments.

The Advertisement

On May 23, the Algorand Foundation released a new advertisement on YouTube titled “When blockchains meet the real world, only one delivers.”

The ad features a supermarket checkout with shoppers attempting to pay in three different crypto assets, Bitcoin (BTC), Ether(ETH), and Solana (SOL).

  • The guy trying to pay with Bitcoin is told by the cashier that he would have to wait because the transaction would take 27 minutes.
  • The Ethereum payer is told that the transaction would cost $112 in fees.
  • The shopper who chose Solana couldn’t pay because the transaction kept failing.

The camera then panned to the next checkout queue processing customers instantly using Algorand with the captions “Instant finality. Low Fees. Designed for the speed of life.”

Political consultant and entrepreneur Anthony Scaramucci also appears in a cameo at the end, asking how to join the Algorand checkout line. Some commentators on X later pointed out hypocrisy after Scaramucci posted on X that a “$SOL ETF” was next — just hours after the ad went live.

The ad, which had more than 700,000 views on X at the time of writing, caused quite a stir on crypto social media, with one commenter stating “Algorand runs 21 TPS, can’t fund its main explorer but drops $100k+ on an ad. This is not the way guys.”

Reactions and Criticism

Chainlink community liaison Zach Rynes said “This kind of marketing makes no sense to me.”

Meanwhile, trader ‘Fiskantes’ told his 90,000 followers on X that “Negative ad campaigns about your competitors this early in the adoption cycle are very low move.”

“It shows zero sum mindset and lack of original ideas,” he said before adding “Any high TPS ghostchain can claim what Algorand claims, until shit hits the fan and people actually start using it.”

Not all responses were critical, however. Kernel Edge co-founder Hilmar Ingimundarson said team Algorand was “spot on” with their marketing while XRP cafe co-founder “Vet” said even though the ad went hard on other chains it was “definitely funny.”

Network Statistics

According to DefiLlama, the total value locked on the Algorand network is just $96 million. This is a fraction of the TVL on Ethereum, which is $65 billion, and Solana, which is $4.8 billion.

Market Response

Algorand’s native token, ALGO, fell 2% on the day to $0.183 and remains 95% down from its 2019 all-time high, according to CoinGecko.