Understanding ORC-20 Tokens: A Beginner’s Guide

May. 13, 2023
Understanding ORC-20 Tokens: A Beginner’s Guide


The Bitcoin blockchain operates ORC-20 tokens and digital tokens denoted as JSON files with an ordinal serial number. The developers created them to address some of the limitations of the BRC-20 standard, such as enhancing security and flexibility.

Advancements In ORC-20 Tokens

ORC-20 tokens have expanded the scope of BRC-20 by supporting various data formats and utilizing Bitcoin’s UTXO model to prevent double-spending, a significant issue with some BRC-20 tokens. This advancement has made ORC-20 tokens a more secure and reliable option for users.

Exploring The ORC-20 Standard: An Overview

The ORC-20 standard is an open standard that was created to improve the BRC-20 standard on the Bitcoin network. The goal of the ORC-20 standard is to keep backward compatibility with BRC-20 while enhancing flexibility, scalability, and security.

BRC-20 is an experimental token standard that allows users to create and transmit fungible tokens on the Bitcoin blockchain using the Ordinals protocol.

A Step-by-Step Guide On Creating BRC-20 Tokens

In January 2023, the developers implemented the Bitcoin Ordinals protocol, which allowed the inscription of NFTs (non-fungible tokens) on satoshis (sats). This implementation has sparked speculation about the possibility of developing fungible tokens on Bitcoin. In March 2023, Domo’s pseudonymous programmer developed the BRC-20 token standards to facilitate minting fungible tokens on Bitcoin.

The first BRC-20 token to be released was known as “ordi.” Bitcoin wallets immediately added functionality for BRC-20 tokens. Several new BRC-20 coins, many meme tokens, were released in the following months. Some BRC-20 tokens saw spectacular price gains and substantial market caps as of May 2023. The growing demand for BRC-20 tokens raised Bitcoin transaction prices, causing significant network congestion.

How Do BRC-20 Tokens Function?

To fully appreciate BRC-20 tokens, it is crucial first to understand how Bitcoin Ordinals work. The Ordinals protocol is a satoshi numbering method that enables users to add extra data to satoshis through a process known as “inscription.”

Ordinal expressions of JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) data are used in BRC-20 tokens. The BRC-20 token standard now provides for creating a BRC-20 token using the deployment function, the minting of BRC-20 tokens using the mint function, and the transfer of BRC-20 tokens using the transfer function. The BRC-20 token standard is still in its early stages, and installing, minting, and transferring BRC-20 tokens is challenging.

ORC-20: A Promising Tool For Strengthening The BRC-20 Standard


The ORC-20 protocol is a significant development that builds upon Ordinals and the BRC-20 token standard. This protocol aims to foster the widespread adoption of Ordinals, digital artifacts capable of carrying diverse data types on the Bitcoin network. By facilitating the creation of new ORC-20 tokens and enabling the migration of existing BRC-20 tokens, this protocol provides a robust framework for enhanced functionality and utilization.

The BRC-20 Token Standard And Its Evolution:

The BRC-20 token standard, inspired by Ethereum’s ERC-20, represents an experimental token standard on the Bitcoin blockchain. It empowers developers to create and transfer fungible tokens utilizing the Ordinals protocol. Notably, the rise of meme coins like Pepe (PEPE) in May 2023 has contributed to the growing popularity of BRC-20 within the crypto ecosystem.

Addressing Limitations: Enhancements Offered By The ORC-20 Protocol:

Recognizing the existing limitations of the BRC-20 standard, including concerns related to double-spending and restricted naming space, the ORC-20 protocol proposes a range of improvements. By incorporating concepts such as UTXO (Unspent Transaction Output) and introducing a more flexible naming space, this protocol aims to overcome these limitations and provide a more robust and secure token framework.

Expanding Possibilities: Benefits & Implications Of The ORC-20 Protocol:

The ORC-20 protocol’s enhancements significantly affect the Bitcoin network and its ecosystem. The introduction of UTXO and flexible naming space address existing limitations and paves the way for new token creation, transferability, and utilization possibilities. These advancements have the potential to foster innovation and broaden the applications of tokens within the Bitcoin ecosystem.

By leveraging the capabilities of Ordinals and incorporating improvements through the ORC-20 protocol, the Bitcoin network takes a significant step forward in promoting tokenization and expanding the utility of digital assets.

ORC-20: Preventing Double-Spending in Blockchain Transactions

The transaction model utilized in ORC-20 tokens draws inspiration from Bitcoin’s UTXO model. This rephrasing aims to highlight this transaction model’s key features and benefits and the use of nonces to enhance transaction flexibility.

Transaction Model based On Bitcoin’s UTXO Model:

ORC-20 tokens employ a transaction model derived from Bitcoin’s UTXO (Unspent Transaction Output) model. Senders can revolutionize the transfer process by specifying the desired amount for the recipient while designating the remaining balance to be returned to themselves, thereby streamlining the transaction experience for users.

Invalidation Of Previous Inscribed Balance:

With the UTXO model, the previous balance recorded in ORC-20 tokens becomes invalid once a transaction concludes. This aligns with the fundamental principles of UTXOs. Consequently, each transaction stands independently, ensuring security and immutability within the ORC-20 token ecosystem.

Enhancing Flexibility with Nonces:

In ORC-20 tokens, every “sends” event can incorporate a unique identifier known as a nonce. Nonces empower senders by providing a means to cancel or reverse a partial transaction if necessary. Senders can add an extra layer of control and flexibility to ORC-20 token transactions by specifying a nonce, which enables them to undo and reverse any transaction that has not been fully processed.

By implementing a transaction model based on Bitcoin’s UTXO model and incorporating nonces, ORC-20 tokens offer a secure and flexible framework for transferring value within their ecosystem.

Exploring The Dangers Of ORC-20 Tokens

When considering investing in ORC-20 tokens, it is important to understand the nature of this experimental project. There is no assurance that tokens created under this standard will be valuable or helpful. ORC-20’s potential benefits and criticisms are examined, highlighting the importance of research and caution before involvement.

The Experimental Nature Of ORC-20:

One of the key aspects to comprehend before investing in ORC-20 tokens is the experimental nature of this project. They have yet to prove the effectiveness of the ORC-20 standard, which aims to enhance the token standards of the Bitcoin network. ORC-20 tokens lack assurances on their value and utility, making this investment opportunity highly speculative.

Criticisms & Complexity Of ORC-20:

Despite aiming to improve existing standards, critics have criticized the ORC-20 token standard for its complexity. Additionally, some perceive that it lacks significant advantages over current standards. The complexity of ORC-20 may present challenges for users and developers alike, potentially affecting its widespread adoption and long-term viability.

The Final Stage Of ORC-20:

ORC-20’s future success is based on the community’s reaction and ability to deal with the challenges raised against it. As an investor, monitoring ORC-20 developments regularly and analyzing the community’s reactions to minimize issues or shortcomings is vital.

Before engaging with ORC-20, potential investors should exercise caution and conduct thorough research. The project’s experimental nature emphasizes the importance of thorough diligence. Staying informed and monitoring the community’s reaction may assist investors in making better-educated judgments regarding investing in ORC-20 tokens.

Rida Fatima

News writer
An ardent wordsmith with a rich five-year background in delving into the realms of finance and cryptocurrencies. Alongside curating captivating blogs, Unique's talents extend to crafting imaginative and engaging content.