Staking in the context of decentralized finance (DeFi) refers to the process of holding and locking up a cryptocurrency, usually in a specific wallet or smart contract, in order to participate in the operation of a blockchain network and earn rewards.
Staking is a way for individuals and organizations to support the security and decentralization of a blockchain network by providing their own computing resources, such as processing power or storage, to validate transactions and produce new blocks. In return for their contribution, stakers are typically rewarded with a share of the transaction fees and/or a portion of the new cryptocurrency that is created as part of the block production process.
Staking can be seen as an alternative to mining, which is the process of producing new blocks on a blockchain network using specialized hardware. Unlike mining, staking does not require expensive hardware or a lot of electricity, and it can be done using a standard computer or a mobile device.