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Solana Crossroads 2024 Recap: Istanbul Hosts Solana's Largest Community Conference with 2,500+ Attendees

With 40+ Speakers, Solana Crossroads in Istanbul Drew 2,500+ Attendees, Growing 300% from Last Year.

May 22, 2024 by Sheldon

Solana Crossroads, the largest Solana community conference ever held, kicked off with long lines of enthusiastic attendees forming outside the venue. Over 2,500 eager attendees from around the globe converged in Istanbul to explore the latest developments in the Solana ecosystem.

This year's attendance surged by 300% compared to the inaugural event last year, which drew 600 attendees. This significant growth reflects the overall expansion of the Solana ecosystem and the increasing demand for in-person events that cater to the community.

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A Global Gathering of the Solana Community

Over 40 industry leaders and Solana ecosystem founders joined the Crossroads as speakers, including key figures like Solana co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko and Real Vision CEO Raoul Pal. The event attracted an impressive crowd of 2,500+ in-person attendees, and 10k people watching on a live stream powered by The Defiant.

The Solana Allstars Turkey community showcased its dedication, with members traveling vast distances to participate in the event. The event's impact resonated far beyond the conference hall, as highlighted by the numerous positive reactions on social media.

Key Announcements and Insights from the Stage

The main stage served as a platform for significant announcements from Solana Ecosystem protocols, including Jupiter's co-founder Siong revealing the imminent release of their mobile app, BONKbot's co-founder King.sol announcing upcoming SPL 404 support, and Birdeye unveiling plans for a mobile app.

In the realm of RWAs, Frank, co-founder of GenesysGo, launched the GenesysGo Mobile shdwDrive for Solana Mobile, enabling users to earn $SHDW by contributing to decentralized storage from their mobile devices.

Michael Repetny, a contributor to Marinade, confirmed the game-changing V2 launch in Q2 2024, while Michael Wagner, CEO of Star Atlas, announced the release of Star Atlas Mobile for Android and iOS by year-end.

Marius Ciubotariu, Co-founder of Kamino Finance, envisioned DeFi as a secure savings account solution and emphasized the importance of user-friendly interfaces for non-technical users.

Tausif Ahmad from Io.net illuminated the potential of DePIN and suggested future developments in creatively utilizing everyday devices.

Engaging the Solana Community

Solana Crossroads fostered community engagement through various activities, including a UsedCarWifHat race between Solana trader Ansem and content creator Sol Jakey .

There was an opening night VIP party and Bosphorous Boat Party for VIP ticket holders on Istanbul's largest local cruise ship.

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There was a dedicated $Bonk Boxing area where attendees could test their fighting skills in a fun, inflatable ring.

2024 Solana Istanbul   Bonk Boxing $BONK Boxing Area

Hands-on Demos Drive Onboarding

2024 Solana Istanbul   Main Stage   143   SmallerSolflare Booth at Crossroads 2024 Exhibition Hall

With the mission of onboarding the next billion users at the forefront of the conference experience, Solana Crossroads provided various on-ramping opportunities so attendees could take their first steps into the Solana ecosystem. Booths were filled with eager participants trying out game demos from Star Atlas, a much-anticipated space game built on Solana. 

2024 Solana Istanbul   Exhibition   031   SmallerSolana Crossroads 2024 Exhibition Hall

The Star Atlas team drew a massive crowd, showcasing the immersive gameplay and the potential of Solana for next-generation gaming.

Etherfuse, a standout project in the RWA space, garnered significant attention for its unique product. Over 1,000 new users were onboarded and rewarded with Mexican bonds, demonstrating the ease with which users can interact with DeFi applications on Solana. 

Solflare, a leading Solana wallet, witnessed a surge of over 1,700 new downloads at their booth, further highlighting the influx of new users entering the Solana ecosystem. 

Caveworld, a captivating PVP game on Solana, also saw impressive engagement, with over 500 people trying out their game demos for the first time.

The convergence of AI and crypto sparked intrigue, with io.net, Sideshift.AI, and Alethia AI captivating audiences at their booths. Over 1,000 people experimented with Alethia AI's agent, demonstrating the growing interest in the Crypto AI ecosystem. Io.net bolstered its network's processing power by onboarding 100+ new workers supplying GPUs to their network, highlighting the increasing demand for AI-powered solutions in the blockchain space.

Feedback from Attendees and Industry Leaders

Caitlin Cook from Hxro Network praised the event's organization and lineup. Erwin, Co-founder of Defi Land, emphasized the networking opportunities and discussions on the future of Web3 gaming. Dave Taylor, CEO of Etherfuse, commended the event's ability to onboard new users.

Michael Wagner, CEO of Star Atlas, expressed his excitement about the event's execution and its potential to onboard the next billion users, while Sol Jakey, Solana's top content creator, emphasized the educational aspect and its impact on onboarding within the Solana ecosystem.

Lily Liu, President of the Solana Foundation, acknowledged the dedication of George Harrap and the Step Finance team in organizing the successful event.

Turkey's selection as the host country holds particular significance. With a staggering 50% of its adult population reportedly holding cryptocurrency, Turkey's crypto-friendly environment and growing Crypto user base make it a prime location for fostering widespread Solana adoption. The conference's growth from last year highlights the need for events like Crossroads, where new startups and founders can connect with industry leaders and collaborate on onboarding new users to pave the way for mass adoption.

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