Comparison between Web 1.0, Web 2.0, and Web 3.0

Since its inception in 1980, the Internet has undergone numerous transformations and changed the world. The Internet has impacted a large number of people’s lives. Most of us can’t go a day without using the Web. Internet culture—consisting of social media, online shopping, and gaming—has firmly established itself in everyone’s daily routines, but it continues to evolve.

The term “Web 3.0” has recently captured everyone’s attention. However, with Web 3.0’s increasing prominence, many still need to fully understand what it is and how it differs from earlier versions of the Web.

The Internet has developed through several phases: Web 1.0, Web 2.0, and Web 3.0. Let’s delve deeper to learn about all these three Web 1.0, Web 2.0, and Web 3.0 versions.

What is Web 1.0?

Web1 is the original version of the World Wide Web. This is a Content Delivery Network (CDN) that helps deliver web content to users.

Web 1.0 is commonly referred to as a read-only web. The reason is that websites hosted on this web version were static, ISP-managed web applications. There was no way to engage with the website’s content beyond merely viewing it.

Web 1.0 has a small population of content creators and a large population of content customers. Other defining characteristics also include the following: 

  • Static pages. 
  • Tables and frames position and align the pages’ elements. 
  • Pages created via Common Gateway Interface (CGI) or Server Slide Include (SSI). 
  • Content is served using The server’s file system. 

What is Web 2.0?

With Web 2.0, the focus has shifted from a small number of people producing a lot of content to a large number of people producing even more content.

Web2 emphasizes user-generated content (UGC), user-friendliness, user participation, interaction, and device and system compatibility in this version of the Internet. It became all about the end user’s experience. Many people’s primary way of interacting with the Internet is through online communities, group projects, conversations, and social media.

So, participation is as important as reading. This can be accomplished in several alternative ways, such as by making a site profile or contributing content like comments or reviews.

Some Characteristics of the Web2:

  • Free sorting of information
  • Developed APIs
  • Self-usage
  • Dynamic content
  • Distribution throughout the entire population, not just specific communities
  • To sum up Web 2.0 in a nutshell: the consumer is king.

Web 2.0, also known as the “social web,” refers to a set of technologies and online communities in which users can engage in highly interactive sharing of their daily thoughts and perspectives. As a result, this may entail the following:

  • Podcasting
  • Social media
  • Tagging
  • Blogging 
  • Commenting 
  • Voting
  • …Etc. Etc. Etc.

The issue with Web 2.0 comes from how the traditional Web 2.0 application works. The user initiates communication with the server, and the server returns a response to the web page. The only thing is that whoever manages the data on the central server has access to a plethora of information.

Companies like Facebook, Google, and Twitter started storing this information on their servers so they could improve their content creation algorithms. This would ensure that everyone has an excellent experience while using the Web. But in reality, our information was sold to advertisers. Web 3.0 addresses these issues.

What Is Web 3.0?

Public blockchains, a distributed ledger system best known for enabling cryptocurrency transactions, may form the basis of a future version of the Internet known as Web 3. Web 3.0’s appeal lies in the fact that it is decentralized; users no longer connect to the Internet via the services of intermediary corporations like Google, Apple, or Facebook; rather, they connect directly to the internet and exercise control over specific areas of the Internet.

With Web 3.0, centralized authorities don’t get to say who can use their services, and neither does trust — meaning that parties don’t need an intermediary to conduct virtual transactions with one another. Web 3.0 technically protects user privacy better because these agencies and intermediaries are doing most of the data collection.

Decentralized finance, or DeFi for short, is a popular part of the Web 3.0 movement. Using the blockchain to conduct actual monetary transactions decentralized from intermediaries like banks or governments is at the heart of this concept. While this is happening, many large corporations and VC firms are investing heavily in Web 3.0.

What are the Properties of Web 3.0?

Semantic Web

For Web 3.0 to function properly, the “semantic web” is essential. By helping the computer understand the data, the semantic Web will pave the way for AI to create practical applications that better use the information. Semantic metadata is a key component of Web 3.0 and will allow for greater data sharing. The result is an improved user experience that is more connected and makes better use of all available data.

3D Graphics

Web 3.0 will usher in a radical shift from the current two-dimensional Web to a more natural three-dimensional cyber world. Take Web3 game design, for instance, where players care far more about the fate of their virtual avatars than they do their own. Examples include web3 game development like Second Life and World of Warcraft.

Artificial Intelligence

With the help of AI, computers and other devices can understand information just like human beings, allowing for more efficient and effective work. The features of web 3.0 with AI would have significant advantages over dishonest human-based practices like falsified data or selective product reviews.


Due to the proliferation of mobile devices and internet connections, the Web 3.0 experience will be available anytime, anywhere. Web 3.0 will expand the Internet beyond the confines of personal computers and mobile devices. The system will have unlimited intelligence and control. Because so many things around you are connected to the Internet, Web 3.0 is “the web of everything and everywhere.”

Web 3.0 Strengths

  • Data becomes interoperable across various platforms and Internet of Things gadgets due to the widespread availability of the information.
  • Permissionless blockchains are used to eliminate barriers to entry caused by socioeconomic status, location, gender, and other factors.
  • Removal of a central authority leading to self-governance and distributed ownership.
  • Because of blockchain’s distributed ledger and decentralized ledger capabilities, data is more secure than ever.
  • Reduced dependence on the big tech monopolies.
  • There is no need to give out sensitive information when making a purchase.

What Are the Differences Between the Web 1.0, Web 2.0, and Web 3.0?

FeatureWeb 1Web 2Web 3
Web Versions DefinitionsMostly Read OnlyRead and WriteRead, Write and Interact
Precedence OrderFirst StageSecond StageThird Stage
Advertising ModelBanner AdvertisingInteractive AdvertisingBehavioural Advertising
Type of WebA simpler, more passive webAn enhanced social WebSemantic Web
Technology StacksWeb and File Servers, HTML, and Portals are technologies connected to Web 1.0.AJAX, JavaScript, CSS, and HTML5 are examples of related technology.Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, and decentralized protocols.
UserbaseIn MillionsIn BillionsIn Trillions
Web GoalsPrimarily for information gatheringConnected people onlineFocus on establishing trust
Content OwnershipOwned ContentShared ContentConsolidated Content
Associated CostPage ViewsCost per clickUser Engagement

Main Features of Web 1.0, Web 2.0 and Web 3.0

Web 1.0

  • Hyperlinking and bookmarking on pages.
  • No communication between the server and the user.
  • The websites were Static.
  • It allowed only browsing of content.

Web 2.0

  • Better interaction.
  • Includes functions like Video streaming, Online documents, etc.
  • Introduction of web applications.
  • Everything becomes online and stored on servers.

Web 3.0

  • Smart, Web-based
  • Applications and functionalities.
  • An amalgamation of Web technology and Knowledge
  • Representation (KR).


In contrast to the one-way information flow of Web 1.0, the more socially collaborative nature of Web 2.0 has encouraged a two-way exchange of ideas between those who produce content and those who consume it. The proliferation of content producers in response to Web 2.0 is staggering. It is nearly impossible to tell real data apart from sponsored and censored data due to the sheer volume, variety, and velocity of Web 2.0 data and the centralization of control over this data by Big Tech.

These worries about the increasing concentration of wealth, the reliance on Big Tech, and the necessity of sharing personal information with intermediaries have sparked a new wave of ideology and thought that is ushering in the era of Web 3.0.

No, Web 2.0 is not dead, and no, Web 3.0 has not completely replaced the World Wide Web. However, there are significant differences between the two that must be addressed. Web 3.0 has been referred to as “the future of the web” by its proponents, but its detractors do not view it as a viable path for its development.

Regardless of how the future of the Web unfolds, we must recognize the exponential growth of technologies like AI, VR, and blockchain. Only time will tell if the convergence of these technologies will produce a clearly defined Web 3.0 technology.

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