Coinbase, one of the top crypto exchanges in the world, made a splash this week in Web3 with the announcement of Base, a new layer 2 blockchain on Ethereum.
Base was built using Optimism’s OP stack, an open-source developer toolkit for the Optimism blockchain. It allows users to onramp into Base from Coinbase, Ethereum, Solana, and other interoperable blockchains.
Will Robinson, the VP of Engineering at Coinbase, said Base is a low-cost, developer friendly, secure layer 2 network that will let “anyone, anywhere to build decentralized apps on-chain.” He added that Base is being incubated by Coinbase, but there are plans to “decentralize the chain over time.”
The testnet of Base was released on Thursday, February 24. Despite initial confusion, Base is not a token — and Coinbase said it has no plans to release a new network token.
Here’s what we know about the new blockchain so far:
- Developers can integrate their products with Base and access easy fiat on-ramps.
- It has the security and scalability to power decentralized apps, using Ethereum as the underlying blockchain.
- It gives developers access to Coinbase’s users, tools, and products for building dapps.
- It allows developers to set up gasless transacts for their dapps.
Base aims to be decentralized, permissionless, and available to anyone with vision to create decentralized apps. It is also designed to provide easy access to multiple blockchains, making it a bridge for the crypto economy.
Coinbase has already partnered with several companies and Web3 platforms for the test. With an estimated 110 million verified users and $80 billion in assets, the exchange hopes to potentially onboard millions into Web3 while empowering developers with tools and resources they need.
Coinbase also announced the Base Ecosystem Fund, which will invest in early-stage projects building on Base that meet certain criteria. In the coming weeks, Coinbase said it will share its roadmap to mainnet.
Crypto Exchanges Launch New Features and Projects
The release of a layer 2 blockchain from Coinbase is huge for the crypto economy, even if the program is still in its early stages. But Coinbase isn’t the only crypto exchange to make innovative moves recently. At Rarity Sniper, we’ve covered several projects from top exchanges in recent months. Here are the biggest stories.
First, Kraken, one of the most secure crypto exchanges in the world, launched its new NFT marketplace Kraken NFT. The marketplace features zero gas fees, creator earnings, rarity rankings, 24-hour customer service, and 200+ funding options.
Second, about a month ago, Binance teamed up with Mastercard for a prepaid crypto rewards card in Brazil. The new card lets Binance Pay members make daily purchases with crypto and the Brazilian real (BRL). For now, it supports 14 different currencies including $BTC, $ETH, $SOL, $BNB, $MATIC, and more.
Lastly, investment platform and crypto exchange Robinhood officially rolled out a Web3 wallet recently. It allows users to view NFT collections and swap cryptocurrencies with no fees on the Polygon blockchain. Robinhood plans to slowly roll out the new feature to the one million users on its waitlist.
It will take time before we see if Base is popular with users and developers. If it is, it could be a win not just for Coinbase, but the entire crypto and Web3 ecosystem. At Rarity Sniper, we’ll keep a look out for more developments in the story.