Given the meteoric rise in Binance (BEP-20) tokens, I compiled this "Binance Smart Chain VS Binance Chain" guide.
In Sept 2020, the Binance exchange launched an Ethereum-compatible blockchain with its native token BNB called the Binance Smart Chain or BSC. BSC is just like Ethereum except it's a more centralized smart contract platform with way less gas fees given its PoSA consensus mechanism that relies on validators approved by Binance.
Binance Chain (launched in April 2019) runs in parallel to BSC but does not have smart contract capability as BC was optimized for fast, decentralized trading. “It’s worth noting that BSC isn’t a so-called layer two or off-chain scalability solution. It’s an independent blockchain that could run even if Binance Chain went offline.”
Cross-chain compatibility: “BEP-2 and BEP-8 tokens from Binance Chain can be swapped for BEP-20 tokens, the new standard introduced for Binance Smart Chain.” The PancakeSwap DEX that supports BEP20 tokens surpassed even Uniswap in total volume yesterday.
One last fun fact: Binance Chain (BC) addresses begin with bnb... and Binance Smart Chain (BSC) addresses begin with 0x...