Metaplex December Round-up


- All-time high of 520k monthly unique signers, representing a 118% increase month-over-month and bringing the total figure to 1.5 million unique wallets that signed a transaction in 2023, the highest of any Solana protocol

- Secondary trading of Solana NFTs created with Metaplex exceeded $360 million in December, surpassing all of Ethereum and doubling Ethereum in unique buyers

- 2.9 million Token Metadata mints, the highest monthly total since September 2022 and a 240% increase month-over-month

- Metaplex announced Inscriptions and Engravings, new standards for fully on-chain and immutable digital assets on Solana

- New enhancements to the Metaplex Program Library including Update Metadata for compressed NFTs and Token Metadata support for Token Extensions

Protocol Activity

In December, creators and developers minted 15.8 million NFTs with Metaplex, including 2.9 million Token Metadata NFTs, the highest monthly total since September 2022 and a 240% increase month-over-month. Over 115 million NFTs were minted through Metaplex in 2023, including 104 million compressed NFTs.

Secondary trading of Solana NFTs created with Metaplex exceeded $360 million in December, surpassing all of Ethereum and doubling Ethereum in unique buyers.

Approximately 520k unique wallets directly signed transactions with the protocol in December, the highest month of all-time and a 118% increase month-over-month. 

1.5 million unique wallets signed transactions in 2023, making Metaplex the largest Solana protocol based on the number of unique signers.

There were over 33 million transactions signed this month, the fifth highest month on record. There’s now been over 340 million transactions since the protocol’s inception.

As of December, the total number of Metaplex collectors reached 16.4 million unique wallets, an increase of ~1.6 million wallets month-over-month, the second largest monthly increase of all-time.

Developer Platform


Metaplex introduced Inscriptions, a new standard for fully on-chain digital assets on Solana. Inscriptions enable users to store an asset’s metadata and media fully on Solana, removing external trust assumptions and unlocking greater composability for on-chain attributes and smart contracts. 

Furthermore the Metaplex Inscription Gateway eliminates the need to use Arweave or IPFS for compatibility, enabling users to display on-chain data directly within dApps, wallets, and marketplaces. The gateway is Apache 2.0 licensed so anyone can run and use their own gateway. Security audits have been completed and both Inscriptions and the Inscription Gateway have been released to mainnet.


Metaplex Engravings allow for Solana’s first truly immutable digital assets. The Engraver program adds an extra layer of security that prevents any changes from ever being made to Engraved NFTs, regardless of whether the originating program is immutable. This enables upgradeable Solana programs such as Token Metadata to create immutable digital assets while still preserving the ability to implement new features, bug/security fixes, and maintain compatibility with the ecosystem as it evolves. The Engraver program is not limited to just Inscriptions and can be used with traditional Metaplex NFTs as well. 

The Engraver program is currently on devnet and is undergoing audits before being deployed to mainnet.

Token Extensions

Following the completion of the audit by Mad Shield, developers and creators can now mint assets with the Token22 token program through Metaplex. This includes the ability to mint fungible and non-fungible tokens using Token Extensions, alongside the benefits of building with Metaplex such as royalty enforcement, programmability, and ecosystem integration through Token Metadata.

Updating Compressed NFTs 

Update Metadata for compressed NFTs is code-complete and was recently shipped to devnet following RPC activation. 

This includes upgrades to Metaplex’s Bubblegum program and Digital Asset Standard (DAS) API, which is the reference implementation indexer and the API spec for interacting with digital assets on Solana.

Metaplex DAO

The Metaplex DAO awarded dReader an $MPLX grant to bring the next generation of collecting comics on-chain. dReader is a platform that enables comic readers and collectors to discover, read, collect, and trade digital comics. This marks the first community Metaplex DAO grant, a huge milestone for the decentralized governance of the Metaplex Protocol.

Community Activations

Metaplex cHack

Metaplex announced cHack, a Compression focused hackathon during the month of February for developers building the future of Solana NFTs. The hackathon will consist of 5 tracks including Social, DePIN, RWAs, Mobile, Gaming, and Developer Tooling, and will include a prize pool totaling 1,000,000 $MPLX. The hackathon will be held virtually, but those looking to hack together in-person can also stop by MtnDAO next month where members of the Metaplex team will be hosting workshops and office hours. There will also be additional compression-focused developer events leading up to the hackathon, so keep your notifications on. More details coming soon. 

Solana Speedrun 2

Metaplex sponsored a track for Solana Speedrun 2, a gaming-focused hackathon and the 2nd Solana Game Jam. Congratulations to IntoTheVerse for winning first place in the Metaplex track for their SolDungeons game, which used the Metaplex Program Library to build a fully on-chain dungeon raider game and marketplace.

Application Ecosystem

The ecosystem of applications and services built on Metaplex continues to expand with a variety of new use cases testing and discovering product market fit.

  • Phantom launched a new feature for discovering trending apps, tokens, and Metaplex NFTs directly within their wallet.
  • Solarplex, one of leading social apps on Solana, released new features that allow verified creators to offer paid mints to collectors and that also facilitate in-post mints using compressed NFTs.
  • Solflare added a new feature to their wallet allowing users to list Metaplex NFTs directly to NFT marketplaces from within the wallet
  • Underdog Protocol is working with farms in Malaysia to tokenize cattle using compressed NFTs in order to simplify and streamline asset management on-chain. They are also pioneering how compressed NFTs can be used to track valuable customer insights on-chain by minting and distributing a new NFT each time a Saga phone (Solana mobile) is activated.
  • BR1: INFINITE is the leading risk-based shooter game on Solana where gamers pay-to-spawn and kill-to-earn. In December they reached a major milestone using metadata to create unique characters in real-time based on NFT ownership. This enables a smaller download size while maximizing in-game customizability to optimize the user experience.
  • DRiP launched Droplets 2.0, a new rewards system that allows collectors to earn and purchase Droplets, which can be used to give back to creators, secure leaderboard spots, and compete for rare mints. 
  • Shaga, a DePIN Cloud Gaming Technology startup, recently launched their Ambassador Program in order to onboard early gamers, node operators, and community ambassadors. Nodes will be represented as Metaplex compressed NFTs and gamers’ user data will be stored as a gamertag NFT. 

Creator Ecosystem 

Solana creators are discovering new ways to build-on chain communities and attract audiences through NFTs. Some highlights include:

  • Ovols released a new DCA tool in partnership with Jupiter that allows users to buy and sell fractionalized shares of NFTs.
  • Degenerate Ape Academy launched their first trait packs “Age of the Dragon” featuring the coveted Dragon Onesie. The 420 available packs sold out in 7 minutes leaving DAA holders itching for the next pack drop.
  • A.R.T. is an innovative new project that attempts to improve upon the Art Gobblers concept, but on Solana. Targeted towards NFT collectors, traders, and art enthusiasts, A.R.T includes two main features: i) the ability to create and mint custom NFTs that are designed directly by the holder and ii) a complex metagame that leverages Solana tech to deliver a fun experience for players.
  • Mad Lads and Tensorians are demonstrating how communities can be formed cross-chain as holders were eligible to receive the highly anticipated Dymension airdrop.

For on-going community updates, please follow @metaplex on Instagram and X (formerly Twitter). For developers, we recommend following and turning on notifications for @metaplexstatus. To contribute to the Metaplex protocol, please engage with us on Github or consider submitting a Metaplex Improvement Proposal (MIP) at

Lastly, a thank you to TopLedger for their data support on this month’s round-up and providing real-time monitoring on Metaplex activity and usage to the ecosystem. For additional Metaplex on-chain metrics, please refer to the following link.