Originally, I was just kindly providing this information in the Daily, but another user (u/RealFilom) suggested I just make a full post. Well, here it goes! Shameless plug, you're welcome if you like the information! P.S. – I do not care, at all, if you buy, sell, hold, don't hold this token. I am just really passionate about it and want to share what I know!
Think about a book – when you want to find a specific piece of information, you can either spend hours-days reading through the whole book to find it, or you can skip to the index and find it within seconds.
Before The Graph (GRT) existed, developers who wanted to create decentralized apps needed to index all of Ethereum's data manually, a task which could take multiple developers months-years minimum to complete. The Graph indexes the previously unorganized blockchain data and makes it organized and easier for developers to create applications with.
Everytime a user is using a dApp (eg, Uniswap) to trade or view data, the dApp has to query The Graph for data. The Graph recently received up to 800 million daily queries in May 2021, with 20% growth monthly growth rate since launch in 2020.
Have you ever heard of Uniswap, Aave, Compound, Balancer, USDC, Synthetix, Sushiswap, MakerDAO, Yearn, Curve, or basically any of the popular dApps? They all functionally rely upon The Graph. A good representation of what The Graph is is when you use info.uniswap.org – all of this data comes from The Graph. Everytime you refresh, that's a query that Uniswap has to make to The Graph in order to provide you with up to data price data.
For the past 8+ months, dApps were getting this data for free, but soon they will migrate their subgraphs to the decentralized mainnet and be charged microfees per query. The query fees will be paid out amongst indexers (those who actually organize the data into subgraphs) and curators/delegators (those who stake/participants in the network). We are talking roughly $0.0001 or $0.00001 per query, so hundreds of millions of monthly capital flowing through The Graph and its participants.
Currently, there are 10-15 layer 1 blockchain networks (Ethereum, Avalanche, Solana, Polygon, and others) and hundreds of popular dApps (those listed above, and more) using The Graph. Several, like Solana, asked The Graph to index their chain – they approached The Graph, not the other way around. However, in the future, there will be thousands of blockchain networks indexed by The Graph, millions of dApps/subgraphs, and trillions of daily queries. Imagine everyone using their phone to transact, refresh, and interact with media/applications that require data from The Graph.
The Graph is like a combination of decentralized versions of Google, banking, all of social media, all other service providers and other industries, all in one.
When GRT launched, it was released on Kraken, Coinbase, and Binance on day 1 – no other coin in history has had this red carpet rollout, and there is good reason for it. All of these exchanges had info pages written for The Graph, where they referred to it as the "Google of blockchain".