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3 min read

$DIMO Explained

December 16, 2022

Why is the $DIMO token useful?

When drivers connect their cars and stream data, they earn $DIMO. Everyone earns a portion of the weekly drop (baseline issuance), and they earn more when app developers and data consumers pay for their data or vehicle access (marketplace issuance).

Great so far… but why would anyone want this token, and how does it enhance the DIMO experience for users?

1) It’s required for transacting on top of the platform.

Buying Data. Any transaction involving the sale of user data requires $DIMO. Any portion owed to the user is always in $DIMO and some $DIMO is also burned (taken out of circulation).

Hardware. If a hardware manufacturer wants to create new DIMO-compatible devices, they’re required to back individual device IDs with $DIMO. This has already happened with the DIMO Data Miners produced by AutoPi. Other fees, such as a token burn for each new vehicle minted, can be added at any time using the governance functionality described below.

Products and Services. In the future, all transactions on top of the DIMO platform that involve payment for goods and services could also generate rewards and token burn — like the 30% Apple App store fees… but surely a more reasonable percentage. Car payments, insurance payments, car rentals, car sales, and more should all result in $DIMO tokens being burned. Such a mechanism should be implemented at a time in the future when DIMO adoption and regulatory clarity are suitably far along.

Simply put: increased transaction volume on the network = increased $DIMO token burn + users earning increased rewards.

Similar utility to: ETH, MATIC (and most other L1s/L2s), HNT (+DC)

2) It gives holders the right to make decisions about how the network works.

$DIMO token holders are able to vote on how the protocol works. They control decisions like: upgrades to software code; protocols and standards; who can license the IP; how fees are generated; and how rewards are issued. Holders are even able to update the properties of the token itself and what it can be used for.

Modern tech giants have shown time and time again how quickly they’ll take advantage of their users for the benefit of their shareholders. For that reason, it’s important that those who control DIMO are the ones who use it.

Similar utility to: UNI, GTC, and other governance tokens

3) It aligns the incentives of the other participants in the ecosystem.

It is important that the businesses that produce DIMO compatible hardware, transmit user data, and build apps have skin in the game and a reason to care about the long-term success of DIMO. Therefore, they must stake and/or spend $DIMO tokens in order to maintain a license and deploy products to the network.

Staking in this context is comparable to a security deposit, like one you might put down when you move into a new apartment. If the staker misbehaves, they may have some or all of their tokens taken away. While this doesn’t generate yield for the staker, it does force them to be long-term holders of the token.

Similar utility to: ETH, MATIC (and all other proof of stake chains), GRT, LPT

Additionally, all DIMO data miners deployed on the network require a payment of $DIMO tokens.

Similar utility to: HNT

4) It shows who’s a part of the community.

As a token on a public blockchain, it couldn’t be easier to prove who is part of the DIMO community. $DIMO holders may receive special access to various app features, events, and more. Owning the $DIMO token should amplify a user’s experience in this ecosystem. This is ultimately up to the app ecosystem and community to implement and offer.

Similar utility to: BANK, FWB

Can I sell the $DIMO token?

We decline to comment on the topic of listing or trading the token. We maintain the highest standards of regulatory compliance and development best practices. $DIMO is issued by the DIMO Foundation and its subsidiaries. Discussions on price and trading are not permitted in the Discord.

Why not just pay drivers in cash?

The traditional model entails selling half the company to venture capital firms to raise money, to advertise to users and get their attention and slowly build a network. At the end, the project is controlled by professional investors and the early users who are responsible for its growth have nothing.

Communities built on top of blockchain technology, whereby control is given to those users, are stronger, better, and more equitable. The technology is also more transparent, practical, and programmable. We believe this new paradigm is here to stay and will become increasingly common.

Why is my vehicle data valuable?

The data you generate within DIMO is valuable for several reasons.

First, businesses want to buy it. We need to improve electric vehicle batteries, self-driving systems, traffic mapping, road quality, recalls, infrastructure planning, cell coverage, and more. McKinsey estimates that data from advanced vehicles could be worth $600/year by 2030.

Second, a verified connection with your car enables you to get more favorable loans, cheaper insurance, better trade in value, more effective maintenance, and more, which could save you thousands of dollars.

Third, it can allow you to participate in more efficient versions of existing applications. Uber verifies identity, confirms insurance, routes requests, tracks trips, displays ratings, and facilitates payments. For that, they take about 25% of every ride you take! DIMO is a general purpose mobility platform that can do those things far cheaper. Some day, a team of five people will build a competitor to Uber on DIMO that takes 1%.

What if I don’t want to give my data to my insurance company?

Who you share your data with is entirely up to you. You don’t have to.

Why should I want to connect my car to DIMO, other than to earn tokens?

To access useful app and services that can:

  • Save you money with data-driven financing, insurance, car sales;

  • Improve your driving experience by helping you buy a better car with verified data, diagnostics that help with maintenance;

  • Give you new functionality for your car, such as locking and unlocking the car from your phone;

  • Let you do more in the world, like rent your car out to a friend or stranger, drive for hire; or

  • Connect you to others with social experiences and online communities.

Why do I want my vehicle to be on the blockchain?

The blockchain means a lot of things to a lot of people. The reason we are using the blockchain is because no company should ever have a monopoly on your data and force you to stay inside their bubble for life. When your digital identity is stored by a company, they dictate the terms by which you can use your data in other places. By utilizing the blockchain, you are in full control. This is also important for car manufacturers, insurance companies, banks, government agencies, and more who wouldn’t consider using a restricted tool that could lock them out or disappear.

For more, check out the following links:

Download the app

Buy the device

Discord (our online community)

Project overview

Governance & tokenomics


Technical docs

Written by: Rob Solomon Cofounder

Rob is a cofounder at DIMO, an open connected vehicle platform. Rob’s background is in finance, investing, and organizational design. Most recently, he worked at Consensys, the largest Ethereum focused development company, with a focus on finance, internal economics, and decentralizing the organization. Prior to that, he was at Vroom, a pioneer in the online used-car marketplace sector. He started his career at the Downtown Project in Las Vegas (a spinoff of Zappos.com) working on corporate finance, investments, and implementing Holacracy.

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