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Ethereum Request for Comment 20 (AKA EIP-20) was proposed by Fabian Vogelsteller and released 30, July 2015. ERC-20, is a standard that defines a set of rules that apply to most tokens native to the Ethereum network; and is the technical standard used for Ethereum based smart contracts that are “fungible token implementations” – meaning that the token is divisible. For example a one dollar bill is fungible because it can be broken into 100 pennies or four quarters. (R1)

The ERC-20 standard provides for:

  • – Transfer tokens from one account to another
  • – Get the current token balance of an account
  • – Get the total supply of the token available on the network
  • – Approve whether an account’s balance can be spent by a third-party account (R2)

The ERC-20 standard uses an API for tokens in smart contracts and uses gas to cover transaction fees, thus they’re sent and stored using Ethereum addresses. ERC-20 tokens can also interact with one another, because (unlike other altcoins) they all share the same Ethereum blockchain. (R3)


R1: https://eips.ethereum.org/EIPS/eip-20
R2: https://ethereum.org/en/developers/docs/standards/tokens/erc-20/
R3: https://ethereum.org/en/developers/tutorials/understand-the-erc-20-token-smart-contract/

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