What are SPL-20 inscriptions? Understanding Solana's blockchain innovation

After Ethereum introduced Ethscriptions and Bitcoin brought us inscriptions, it's now Solana's turn to enter the spotlight. SPL-20 is Solana's approach to embedding digital art and NFTs directly onto its blockchain, bringing inscriptions to the Solana space.


  • What's SPL-20?: SPL-20 inscriptions represent a significant advancement in the Solana ecosystem, offering a unique set of rules and specifications for token creation and functionality on the blockchain.

  • Redefining digital art storage: SPL-20 stands out for its capacity to directly store digital art on the blockchain, which deviates from the norm of relying on external sources for NFT storage.

  • Growth and adoption: Adopting SPL-20 inscriptions has notably enhanced Solana’s scalability and efficiency, simplifying the development process and fostering improved interoperability within the network.

  • Inscription ranking and control: SPL-20 uniquely manages inscription ranking and control, making sure of creator authority and authenticity in NFT projects through mechanisms like update authority.

  • LibrePlex's role: LibrePlex is a crucial component of SPL-20 registrations, promoting a decentralized and community-oriented digital asset protocol in the Solana ecosystem, with a strong emphasis on open-source ideals and extensive digital collections.

What is SPL-20?

SPL-20, short for Solana Program Library-20, is more than just a new format for tokens. They represent a comprehensive set of rules and specifications that govern how tokens are created and function within the Solana network.

SPL-20, taking cues from Bitcoin's BRC-20 standard, stands out with its unique capability of allowing the direct storage of digital artwork on the blockchain. This is a notable departure from conventional NFT methods, which often rely on third-party platforms for art storage. SPL-20 provides a more cohesive and effortless experience for both users and creators by directly storing digital art on the blockchain.

Another defining aspect is the compatibility of SPL-20 inscriptions with the existing Solana Program Library. This compatibility allows developers to integrate new tokens into the Solana ecosystem, simplifying token creation and enhancing the network's efficiency.

SPL-20's adaptability has unlocked numerous possibilities. It can be used in various applications, ranging from decentralized finance (DeFi) protocols involving stablecoins and lending platforms, to the growing realm of NFTs, which enables the creation of distinctive and tradeable digital assets such as digital art, collectibles, and virtual real estate.

The potential impact of SPL-20 on supporting the smooth transfer of assets between various blockchain networks and promoting a more interconnected and diverse crypto ecosystem is also visible in its cross-chain compatibility capabilities.

The team at SoBit has been diligently working on a cross-chain solution between SPL (Solana Program Library) and BRC (Bitcoin's token standard) since the fourth quarter of 2023. Their progress includes:

  • Testing and auditing: They've completed testing and auditing of the cross-chain verification functionality, confirming its reliability and security.

  • Early user testing: SoBit has invited early users to test the new platform, gathering crucial feedback and insights for further refinement.

  • Launch of SoBit v1: Using the Soar Launchpad, SoBit v1 has been launched, allowing users to bridge BRC-20 assets to the Solana blockchain. This development represents a significant step in enhancing interoperability and connectivity within the blockchain space.

How does SPL-20 redefine digital art storage on blockchain?

SPL-20 inscriptions offer a unique approach by assigning individual Solana addresses to images for direct on-chain storage. This method not only enhances the integrity and longevity of the art but also liberates it from the constraints of external data storage.

The creativity doesn't end there, though. With SPL-20, digital art can now be altered — a significant feature compared to the usual unchangeable state of blockchain assets. This adaptability opens up new possibilities, such as switching traits or incorporating dynamic elements like day and night cycles into NFTs for gaming.

These functionalities, influenced by Bitcoin's BRC-20 protocol, enhance the level of imagination and engagement in blockchain-based digital art. SPL-20 inscriptions are supporting the evolution of digital art on Solana, offering a vision of security and full integration within the network. This aligns with the overall objective of improving the digital art community and increasing its strength and accessibility.

Despite the benefits, implementing SPL-20 inscriptions presents some difficulties. Storing sizable documents on the Solana blockchain may lead to issues such as network congestion, amplified bandwidth needs for validators, and elevated expenses for infrastructure.

Some critics believe that Solana's built-in features can manage complex NFT transactions and storage, raising doubts about needing an extra layer like SPL-20.

How have SPL-20 inscriptions grown?

Many believe that the growth of SPL-20 inscriptions, a standardized token format within the Solana Program Library-20, has been transformative for the Solana blockchain. Here's a breakdown of its significant growth and impact:

Scalability and efficiency

Solana, known for high throughput and low transaction costs, has enhanced these qualities by adopting SPL-20 inscriptions. This development aligns with Solana's ongoing efforts to scale while maintaining performance.

Developer-friendly environment

SPL-20 inscriptions have simplified the development process for tokens on Solana. By providing a standardized format, they reduce the complexity of token creation, making it more accessible for a broader range of developers. This ease of use is crucial in attracting more innovation and creativity to the Solana ecosystem.

Enhanced interoperability

One of the key achievements of SPL-20 is enhanced interoperability within the Solana network. This feature enables collaboration and interaction among various projects, creating a more interconnected blockchain environment. Making interoperability a priority supports the long-term health and growth of the blockchain community.

How does SPL-20 manage inscription ranking and control?

SPL-20 manages inscription ranking and control in a distinctive way that has far-reaching implications for NFT authenticity and creator control. Here's how it works:

Inscription ranking

The order SPL-20 inscriptions are created determines their ranking — similar to how Bitcoin ordinals are ranked. This system helps to create FOMO (Fear of Missing Out), which motivates more people to participate in on-chain inscription activities. Inscriptions made in the beginning are often highly desired, generating interest and involvement among the Solana community.

Control and update authority

Control over the inscription process is a critical feature of SPL-20. A user must hold what's known as 'update authority' to inscribe an SPL-20, meaning they must be the NFT's creator. This requirement makes sure that project owners maintain control over the inscription process. This not only upholds the authenticity of the NFT project but also helps to instill a sense of trust and security for both creators and collectors.

Preventing unauthorized alterations

Having the responsibility of update authority not only acts as a protective measure against unauthorized modifications but also prohibits individuals from changing the image without proper authorization. This aspect is vital in preserving the authenticity of the NFT and upholding the creator's original vision. The strategy used by SPL-20 to oversee the ranking and regulation of inscriptions is important in bolstering the credibility and reliability of NFT ventures on the Solana network.

What role does LibrePlex play in SPL-20 inscriptions?

LibrePlex is working to create a future-proof, decentralized digital asset protocol for Solana. This approach makes sure the development and management of digital assets on Solana aren't centralized in the hands of a few but instead distributed across a broader community.

Community-driven metadata protocol

One of LibrePlex's key initiatives is the introduction of a community-driven Metadata protocol free from commercial interests. Owned by a consortium with distributed deployment keys, this protocol makes sure that no single entity has the power to make fundamental changes to the ecosystem. This approach safeguards the Solana ecosystem from potential monopolistic control and promotes a more stable and sustainable development environment.

Robust digital libraries

LibrePlex's involvement extends to creating robust, decentralized, and open-source digital libraries. These libraries are essential for the development and deployment of SPL-20 inscriptions, serving as a repository and access point for digital assets within the Solana ecosystem.

Collaborative community effort

The success of LibrePlex is thanks to a group of people who work together. They're technologists, influencers, and designers. Collaboration can improve the development process by incorporating different ideas and skills. This can help to make SPL-20 inscriptions more effective and innovative.

LibrePlex plays an important role in SPL-20 inscriptions. It focuses on decentralization, community-led rules, strong digital libraries, and working together. This helps SPL-20 inscriptions grow and become successful in the Solana ecosystem.

What are the advantages and challenges of SPL-20 inscriptions?

SPL-20 inscriptions offer several advantages, but also a unique set of challenges.


Scalability and efficiency

SPL-20 inscriptions help make the Solana network faster and more efficient. Solana is already known for being fast and cheap, but using SPL-20 inscriptions makes it even better. Why's this important? Because it allows the network to handle more transactions and users as it grows.

Enhanced interoperability

One major benefit of using SPL-20 inscriptions is their improved compatibility with the Solana network. This characteristic promotes smoother cooperation and communication between various blockchain ventures. This enables a more integrated and active blockchain environment, vital for cultivating a strong and adaptable ecosystem.


Potential network bloat

One major concern with SPL-20 inscriptions is the possibility of network bloat due to the storage of large files directly on the blockchain. This could lead to increased bandwidth requirements for validators and higher costs for infrastructure providers, potentially affecting the network's efficiency and scalability.

Complexity of on-chain media

While on-chain media support offers numerous benefits, it also introduces complexity in efficiently managing and storing these media files. Provided the network can handle these demands without compromising performance is a challenge that needs continuous attention and innovation.

The final word

With the ability to store digital art directly on the blockchain, SPL-20 stands apart from traditional methods, offering a cohesive and effortless experience for both users and creators.

The introduction of SPL-20 has also enhanced Solana's scalability and efficiency, making the network more accessible and interoperable within a diverse blockchain environment.

NFT projects benefit from a distinctive inscription ranking and control approach, prioritizing creator authority and authenticity. This provides an additional level of trust and security.

The role of LibrePlex in promoting a decentralized and community-focused digital asset protocol within the Solana ecosystem can't be overstated. The organization's commitment to open-source ideals and robust digital libraries is crucial for the ongoing success of SPL-20 inscriptions.

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