Get DePINed with Fluence: Hivemapper, Akash & WeatherXM

Get DePINed with Fluence: Hivemapper, Akash & WeatherXM

Decentralized Physical Infrastructure Networks (DePINs) are one of the main trends in the cryptocurrency market in 2024. This is due to their real-world utility, correcting market inefficiencies and the ability to take market share from big tech. Maximizing underused infrastructure is an exciting trend, and software has finally reached sufficient maturity to allow the creation of reliable networks from the aggregation of unrelated parties. No wonder that so many projects have jumped on the DePIN bandwagon this year. 

But, beyond being a buzzword - what are the real opportunities unlocked by DePIN projects? What does it take to be a successful DePIN blockchain from the business, infrastructure and cryptoeconomics perspective? Where are we at with the DePIN revolution, and how long will it take to reach mainstream? These, and other questions are asked by Fluence co-founder Tom Trowbridge, and his guests on the the DePINed podcast, produced by Fluence

DePINed is a weekly podcast focused on exploring the ecosystem of decentralized physical networks and real projects emerging in the ecosystem - spanning domains including infrastructure such as wifi hotspots, computer servers, transportation, drones or even weather - and analysing the underlying cryptoeconomics and incentives fuelling these global networks. Tom Trowbridge and his guests explore various use cases launching in this sector, as well as the key players in financing, and explains this growing sector which will reshape a broad array of industries.

Read on to find out more about the key insights from the June episodes of the DePINed podcast. 


The most recent episode features Ariel Seidman, the CEO and co-founder of Hivemapper, a decentralized mapping platform - a very high profile project that's live, operating, working, scaling in a way that really shows the industry’s potential of DePIN. Hivemapper uses a network of dashcam-equipped drivers to collect real-time data, aiming to create up-to-date maps that surpass traditional services like Google Maps.

Tom and Ariel explore the various factors that came together in order to create opportunities for projects in the DePIN industry, and walk through the detailed insights into the operations and success of HiveMapper. “Since going live in the past 18 months,  we've mapped about 21 or 22 % of the global road network. There's over 10,000 devices out there that are actively mapping. And we have a back order list of about 30,000 devices for a new model” shared Ariel. They also dive  into specific incentives and cryptoeconomics of the project, as well as the ways to compete with global incumbents such as Google or Amazon, with DePIN. “The only way to compete with Amazon is having a global network of developers out there, who have incentives to do so. And so if you crowdsource and you have a whole community working on it, whether it's for altruism or cryptoeconomics, wherever the incentive mechanism is”, shared Tom. 

Watch the full episode here or listen on Spotify


Greg Osuri joined Tom Trowbridge in discussing Akash, one of the earliest DePIN projects - decentralized cloud computing platform that leverages blockchain technology to provide cloud services. They start off by defining DePIN as a mechanism leveraging decentralization to enhance resource allocation. The conversation spans topics such as progression of hardware deployment within DePIN projects, Akash’s emphasis on granularity in selecting data centers, including their classification based on bandwidth and other metrics, as well as the company’s value proposition regarding GPUs: increased availability and reduced pricing. 

Greg and Tom also discussNvidia, the world’s pioneer in GPU-accelerated computing, and their strategic interest in maintaining a fragmented GPU market. “NVIDIA is going to be the most valuable company in the world. And demand for AI and computer chips only continues to raise. According to some predictions, 5 % of global GDP will be spent on compute for AI in the near future”, explained Greg. “One of the key points to pull out here is Nvidia's self-interest is in having a fragmented GPU market, which helps Akash and other independent providers.” added Tom. 

Watch the full episode here or listen on Spotify. 


Another episode released this June features Manolis Nikiforakis, co-founder and CEO of WeatherXM - a company that specializes in weather-related technology solutions aimed at improving the impact of weather on people's lives and the environment​. Manolis explains Weather XM's community-driven initiative to establish a global weather station network, addressing data gaps in underserved regions. He walks us through an overview of weather stations and deployment strategies, talks about his background in software engineering, hardware, and kitesurfing and how it all led him to founding this business. He also emphasizes Weather XMs untapped potential in weather infrastructure in the Global South.  

Watch the full episode here on YouTube, or listen on Spotify

We hope you enjoyed learning from the DePINed podcast. Stay tuned for new episodes every week and follow us on Twitter