Coinbase Opens Base Blockchain to General Public


Coinbase is opening its blockchain, Base, to the public on Wednesday (Aug. 9).

This general availability launch follows a test phase in which the network was open to developers from February to July, Seeking Alpha reported Wednesday.

Before going public, Base had already become the fifth-biggest layer 2 blockchain, with about $134 million of deposits locked into apps and protocols on Base, according to the report.

Coinbase said in a Thursday (Aug. 3) blog post that Base would open to the public on Wednesday and that existing decentralized applications (dapps) would turn on Base support and new dapps would be launched.

“Since we announced Base, our mission has been clear and consistent: bring the next million builders and billion users onchain,” Coinbase said in the post.

Base is built on the Ethereum blockchain and offers users improved scalability, increased transaction speeds, reduced gas fees and consistent security measures, according to a page in the Coinbase help center that introduces the new offering.

“We see Base as a key step in bringing Coinbase’s products, users and assets into the decentralized cryptoeconomy,” the company said on the page.

The company added: “We’re incubating Base inside of Coinbase, leveraging the last decade of our experience building crypto products, and plan to progressively decentralize the chain over time. We currently do not plan to issue a new network token.”

This project represents the first time a publicly traded company has launched its own blockchain, Jesse Pollak, creator of Base and head of protocols at Coinbase, told CoinDesk.

Base is designed to be low cost, easy to use, built for developers, decentralized and connected into the largest decentralized ecosystem — Ethereum — Pollak said in the report, adding that from Coinbase’s perspective, “it is kind of our investment in enabling that next wave of utility and innovation in crypto.”

Coinbase is looking to broaden its ecosystem beyond its crypto exchange, while also expanding that of the builders in the Web3 and crypto space.

“As we look ahead, we are expanding our focus towards crypto use cases beyond trading,” Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong said Thursday (Aug. 3) during the company’s quarterly earnings call. “Trading is the big use case of the early days of crypto, but it is starting to move away from that … with layer 2 solutions [alternative uses] can get much, much better as people interface with them more.”