Jack Dorsey continues his commitment to the crypto industry with participation in CoinList, which helps businesses raise funds using tokens.
Bitcoin-friendly Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has made a direct investment in a fledgling cryptocurrency company as part of its latest funding round.
CoinList to launch crypto exchange and wallet
Dorsey, who has become increasingly well known for his support of Bitcoin (BTC), injected an undisclosed amount in token sales startup CoinList, the Wall Street Journal reported on Oct. 30.
CoinList serves as a platform for other startups to raise capital via tools such as token sales, airdrops and hackathons.
The company raised a total of $10 million in the latest round, having operated on the market since 2017. It will now seek to enter the exchange sector, along with launching a wallet.
“Crypto needs a trustworthy platform for launching new projects. CoinList leads the industry in that role, and trading is a logical next step,” the Wall Street Journal quoted Dorsey as saying.
The rebirth of token fundraising?
The move comes at a delicate time for the token industry. As Cointelegraph reported, tightening regulatory controls worldwide have resulted in fundraising tools that were popular at the time of CoinList’s genesis being no longer viable.
Among them are initial coin offerings, or ICOs, which have all but disappeared since last year.
Dorsey himself has pledged long-term commitment to Bitcoin, in particular, supporting the phenomenon via both Twitter and his payment company Square.
Last week, Square announced it was moving into incremental stocks sales, Dorsey tweeting that cryptocurrency purchases were a suitable alternative for those who were not interested in owning equity.
He added that he himself was not interested in participating in Facebook’s digital currency, Libra.
Twitter and Square CEO Jack Dorsey says “Hell no” to the question of whether Twitter would ever join Facebook’s Libra project.
Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter and Square, made it crystal clear that Twitter will never join Facebook’s Libra project.
“Nothing within Libra had to be a cryptocurrency”
On Oct. 24, per a Twitter thread by Hollywood Reporter editor Alex Weprin, who was covering an event at Twitter’s New York office, Jack Dorsey made it abundantly clear that Twitter will stay a million miles away from Facebook’s plans to launch its Libra stablecoin in 2020.
The Twitter CEO reportedly gave a straightforward answer to the question if Twitter would ever consider joining Facebook’s Libra project. His response was short but all-telling: “Hell no.” He added:
“Nothing within Libra had to be a cryptocurrency to do what they wanted to do.”
Reacting to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s speech at Georgetown University, Dorsey said that a lot of Zuckerberg’s comments seemed to be based in American tradition. Zuckerberg’s speech focused on the subject of freedom of speech, censorship and the role tech platforms should play in democracy. The speech also criticized China’s approach to tech development. Dorsey said, ”I fear that if we base too much in this one concept, we take away the ability to experiment and expand,” explaining:
“We are not just serving an American audience, we are serving a global audience […] The internet is somewhat of an emerging nation-state.”
Bitcoin is the best bet
Dorsey had already said in September that he would not follow the example of Facebook’s Libra and release a Twitter-based cryptocurrency dedicated to Twitter. Dorsey said that he prefers the use of existing open standards like Bitcoin (BTC):
“I think [Bitcoin’s] the best bet because it’s been the most resilient, it’s around for 10 years, it has a great brand, and it’s been tested a bunch. […] As I look at all cryptocurrencies that could fill that role of being the native currency for the internet, [Bitcoin is] a pretty high probability.”
Bitcoin bull and co-founder of Gemini crypto exchange, Cameron Winklevoss noted that negative interest bonds account for $17 trillion and urged the public to buy Bitcoin.
Bitcoin (BTC) bull and co-founder of Gemini crypto exchange Cameron Winklevoss has noted that the volume of negative interest bonds accounts for $17 trillion and has urged the public to buy Bitcoin. In an Oct. 17 tweet. Winklevoss wrote:
“$17 trillion dollars are currently held in negative interest bonds. 17 trillion reasons why you should own bitcoin.”
How to move such a volume to BTC?
In a series of comments to the tweet, one of the users argued that “migrating this over to Bitcoin is a huge challenge,” to which Winklevoss asked which challenges they are referring to, further stating that it takes less than two minutes to open an account on a crypto exchange.
However, when the user asked how one can move negative debt to BTC in that volume, Winklevoss did not respond.
Negative yielding bonds shake the industry
Earlier in October, Tone Vays, a veteran trader and Bitcoin expert, expressed a stance similar to Winklevoss’ saying: “As more and more Developed nations try to eliminate cash and implement negative interest rates, this can drive many people into Bitcoin.”
In mid-August, Deutsche Bank reported that 27% of global bonds traded were negative yield at the time, so expected to pay out less than their initial cost. This represented $15 trillion worth of debt, or as VanEck digital asset director, Gabor Gurbacs, commented, that was 75 times the total Bitcoin market cap. “It’s time for Plan ₿!” Gurbacs added.
At the same time, the Bank of Japan said that central banks can not use digital currencies to enforce negative interest rates. Masayoshi Amamiya, deputy governor of the Bank of Japan, said that states issuing digital currency with a negative interest rate would force inhabitants towards cash. Amamiya argued:
“To overcome the nominal zero lower bound, central banks would need to eliminate cash. Eliminating cash would make settlement infrastructure inconvenient for the public, so no central bank would do this.”
Joe Weisenthal, editor of news for Bloomberg Digital, said that blockchains are essentially inefficient and that “Bitcoin is for making transactions The Man is against.”
Joe Weisenthal, the executive editor of news for Bloomberg Digital, said that blockchains are essentially inefficient and that “Bitcoin is for making transactions The Man is against.”
The comments come from Bloomberg’s Markets newsletter, which Weisenthal reproduced in a tweet on Oct. 17. He elaborated that transactions would not be possible without individuals willing to pay fiat money for Bitcoin (BTC), with blockchains being “inherently inefficient, computationally costly systems,” which only have value when using them for transactions.
Weisenthal urged regulators and lawmakers to consider if it is really reasonable to pour money into the system and to make it easier for transactors to purchase things law enforcement authorities are against. Weisenthal continued:
“If you’re in the business of creating institutional onramps to crypto, you have to be cognizant of the risk that one day regulators wake up and ask: Wait, why did we provide a gateway to provide liquidity into a space, whose express purpose is to let people evade The Man?”
“Nonsense & misinformation”
The post turned into a heated discussion, with the participation of leading industry players. Anthony Pompliano, the founder of Morgan Creek Digital Assets, argued:
“This is wildly inaccurate. You’re claiming that non-censorship is the only value prop of Bitcoin. What about the non-seizure element? What about the disinflationary monetary supply? Or the sound money element? Or pseudonymity? Please stop writing nonsense & misinformation.”
Co-founder of Gemini crypto exchange, Cameron Winklevoss noted that the liquidity of gold markets enables “transactors,” while it is a store of value and not a medium of exchange. Winklevoss further asked Weisenthal to reason his “tortured argument” to Bitcoin.
Weisenthal parried, saying: “There’s no question that liquidity in the gold market helps transactors. But it’s extremely hard to use gold online in an censorship free manner, so that’s not part of the selling point,” to which Winklevoss questioned who exactly is transacting in gold.
Square Crypto announced on Twitter that they have hired Matt Corallo, Bitcoin software developer and co-founder of Blockstream.
Square Crypto, the cryptocurrency-focused branch of mobile payment company Square, has hired Blockstream co-founder and Bitcoin (BTC) developer Matt Corallo. Square Crypto announced the news in an official Twitter post on Aug. 20.
Matt Corallo also commented on the announcement, saying:
“So excited to be joining the @sqcrypto team over the coming weeks. Experimenting with different models to accelerate Bitcoin OSS is awesome!”
As indicated in his Twitter post, Corallo is a Bitcoin Open Source Developer who previously worked at Bitcoin development company Chaincode Labs. Per his LinkedIn profile, Corallo has worked there for the past two years and 8 months. Additionally, Corallo is listed as the co-founder of Blockstream, a blockchain and Bitcoin development company where he worked for just under two and a half years.
Square Crypto’s teambuilding
As previously reported by Cointelegraph, Twitter founder Jack Dorsey, who also founded Square, is looking to build a small team dedicated to improving crypto infrastructure. The team will reportedly include one designer and a handful of software engineers, and all of their projects will be open source. Square Crypto’s first hire was Steve Lee, who previously served as a director at Google.
Square aims to develop Bitcoin infrastructure
In a recent Twitter “ask me anything,” project manager at Square Crypto Steve Lee emphasized that his team is particularly keen on developing support for the Bitcoin ecosystem. Lee wrote:
“We are very, very pro-Bitcoin. There is more than enough work for us to do there. That said, we are open to emerging use cases and technologies that complement Bitcoin.”
Over the last two years, cryptocurrency scamming on social media has been prevalent. In January 2019, it was reported that crypto impersonation scams on Twitter raked in millions in cryptocurrencies from people pretending to be well known blockchain personalities. Now a new form of deception can be seen on the platform, as scammers are using photoshopped pictures of tech personalities and businesses like Coinbase to further another crypto con game.
There’s a new swindle on crypto Twitter where scammers are sharing screenshots of well known cryptocurrency and tech luminaries promoting supposed BTC giveaways. Typically these fraudsters will use a very popular post with hundreds or thousands of likes and type the phrase “Great News.” Underneath the user’s text is a photoshopped picture of an announcement from Coinbase saying that it’s offering a BTC giveaway. The tweets are a blatant scam in order to con a person into believing they can “double” their coins. For instance, on August 12, Morgan Creek cofounder Anthony “Pomp” Pompliano tweeted his usual weekly investors’ letter where people can sign up and get regular emails from Pomp. Just below Pomp’s tweet is a Twitter account called “Adam[BTC/HODL]” who states: “Thanks Coinbase I just received 1.90680 BTC — Anyone can join, not much left.” Below that statement is a photoshopped picture of a faked Coinbase account stating:
To celebrate 50 million users, we decided to host a 5,000 BTC giveaway event — You can use any wallet or exchange to participate. Visit our promotion site — If you are late, your BTC will be sent back, thank you for your support, Coinbase team.
Below the tweet, another scam Twitter account adds to the con game by saying they got some coins from the giveaway. “OMG — Just got 2 BTC, thanks for sharing this,” the user “Sierra” exclaims while 59 people have liked her tweet. Another fake account dubbed “Charrlees Hooskiinson” can be seen tweeting the same scam in a real Twitter thread started by Cardano’s Charles Hoskinson. The picture shared, in this case, is a photo of a phony Elon Musk account which says: “Our marketing department here at Tesla HQ came up with an idea — to hold a special BTC and ETH giveaway event for all the crypto fans out there.” Just like the bogus Coinbase account picture, the fake Musk account shows a website to visit where people can allegedly double their coins.
Impersonating Prominent Crypto and Tech Influencers and a Phony Block Explorer
While investigating the first fraudulent website tied to these scams, visitors can see a Coinbase logo and a message geared toward new guests. The site says that if a person sends 0.1 to 10 BTC to the address they will receive a whopping 1-100 BTC in return. Below that is a BTC address the person can send funds to, which has also changed regularly since news.Bitcoin.com started this investigation.
The current address displayed on the scam giveaway site today has zero BTC and no transactions tied to the address have ever been recorded. But the website’s visitors get a different look as there’s a dummy block explorer shown on the website aiming to bolster the claim that people are really doubling their money. Watching the fake explorer shows someone just deposited 8 BTC and got 88 BTC sent back to the original address, but on a real block explorer, these transactions don’t exist.
Elon Musk, the founder of Tesla, is also targeted in the fraudulent Twitter act as photoshopped pictures show another BTC doubling scam. The con is done in the same way as the Coinbase example. Some random Twitter account shares a fake picture and underneath another phony account someone says they were just awarded a couple of BTC. The website in the photo leads to a fake Tesla page too that is almost exactly the same as the Coinbase version, but it’s red with a Tesla logo. Just like the last one, there’s another deceptive block explorer showing fictitious BTC transactions. There’s also a progress bar showing how much BTC is left in the so-called doubling pot and the longer you stay on the website it makes it seem like you’re missing out on a lot of BTC.
Twitter Scammers Continue to Make Millions of Dollars From Crypto Newbs
It’s uncertain whether Twitter is aware of the latest scam revolving around the crypto Twitter space. Last year, researchers uncovered empirical data which confirmed 15,000 cryptocurrency scam accounts were strewn across the Twittersphere. In February, social media cryptocurrency community member impersonators were making $5,000 a day in ethereum on Twitter. One particular person sent $18,000 to a fake Erik Voorhees account. In March 2018, the well known crypto influencer Emin Gun Sirer told Twitter owner Jack Dorsey that the scams were getting out of hand, adding that if he “can’t detect this kind of brazen scam, what hope do you have of improving your platform?” Dorsey did respond to Sirer’s post that day and said: “We are on it.”
But the scam tweets have continued relentlessly and people are still complaining to Twitter every day about this obvious con. “People do not tweet out that they are giving away money for free — That is a complete scam — The old saying is true ‘if it seems too good to be true it probably is.’ There is a Bill Pulte investor in the cryptocurrency space that is promising to give away money — Twitter needs to investigate,” one person wrote on Monday. Another person tweeted: “This person has been creating accounts all over Twitter, trying to scam people out of crypto. Accounts keep cropping up replying to tweets from prominent people in the community — It’s a scam.” By the look of some of crypto Twitter’s most popular posts today, it seems the company still hasn’t received the message.
What do you think of the latest crypto Twitter scammers who use photoshopped pictures to promote their con game? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.
Disclaimer: Readers should do their own due diligence concerning the aforementioned scams and websites. Bitcoin.com or the author is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, company, software or any activities mentioned in this article. This editorial review is for informational purposes only.
Image credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Twitter, and screenshots taken by Jamie Redman.
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The professional trading arm of Coinbase is scheduled to begin listing Algorand, a cryptocurrency developed by an MIT professor.
Major cryptocurrency platform Coinbase is adding the Algorand protocol’s eponymous token to its professional-targeted trading platform Coinbase Pro on Aug. 14.
Coinbase announced this latest addition in an official blog post on Aug. 9. The cryptocurrency exchange will scale up to full Algorand (ALGO) trading in four steps: transfer-only, post-only, limit-only and full trading.
The announcement also recalls some other common procedures for adding a new token to its platform, which include announcing the onboarding phases as they occur on Twitter and that they will provide immediate support for Algorand in every supported jurisdiction with the exception of New York.
As per the announcement, Algorand is a cryptocurrency that aims to solve some common issues — decentralization, scalability and security — within current blockchain infrastructure. Algorand reportedly launched recently as of June and utilizes a permissionless, proof-of-stake protocol.
Algorand’s fundraisers so far
As previously reported by Cointelegraph, the cryptocurrency’s issuing organization, the Algorand Foundation, raised $60 million through token sales. Algorand additionally raised $66 million over the past year through venture capital firms, including Union Square Ventures and Pillar Venture Capital. The foundation is reportedly aiming to grow Algos’ market capitalization to $24 billion.
As noted in Coinbase’s blog post, Algorand was founded by Silvio Micali, a cryptographer and Turing award winner. Micali is a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who has great optimism for blockchain as a high-security technology. Micali has remarked:
“Only a true decentralized system, where the power is really so spread that is going to be essentially practically impossible to attack them all and when you don’t need to trust this or that particular node, is going to bring actually the security we really need and deserve.”
A study reveals that more than 80% of all crypto related posts on Reddit are positive in nature, sentiment toward crypto on a rise in recent years…
Despite all of the bad press that the digital asset industry continues to receive on an almost daily basis, it appears as though the overall sentiment of the online communities in regard to this burgeoning domain is still pretty positive. For example, Comparitech — a research firm that provides its consumers with a host of specialized data that allows one to make more informed decisions — recently used a machine learning-based analysis tool to study more than 48K Reddit posts to determine which cryptocurrencies were viewed most favorably by the masses. Not only that, the study also took into consideration a total of 7,500 crypto/blockchain-related articles from a variety of different national and international media outlets.
All of the posts, tweets and articles analyzed by the researchers were scored on the basis of their positive/negative sentiment — primarily in relation to other articles included in the study. In this regard, there were a few notable trends that jump out at the reader upon first glance. While over 85% of the analyzed Reddit posts were deemed to be positive in nature, articles published by various mainstream media publications such as HuffPost, Business Insider and The International Business Times were, by and large, dismissive of the crypto market.
To get a better overview of the matter, Cointelegraph has reached out to Craig Russo, owner of Peer, a Boston-based startup that is behind the popular crypto and gaming media outlet SludgeFeed. When asked about what the overall sentiment of the average social media user toward the crypto industry (at large) was like, Russo pointed out:
“While there will always be different camps or schools of thought on the crypto industry, the overall sentiment across social media continues to be bullish, both on future price growth and mainstream adoption of the technology.”
A similar point of view is also shared by Sritanshu Sinha, an independent crypto author and analyst, whose work has been shared online by the likes of John McAfee and Kim DotCom. Sinha pointed out that the overall reception that the crypto industry has received thus far on forums such as Reddit and Twitter has been quite warm. He is also quick to point out that, since the Reddit community as a whole views itself as being anti-establishment, the platform’s users are usually drawn to crypto much more than your average investor. Similarly, in the case of Twitter, he believes that there are a few independent analysts who have hundreds of thousands of followers and therefore have the power to influence the community toward fostering a positive view regarding various altcoins/digital offerings.
Has the public views on crypto changed over the years?
Another pertinent question is how the crypto industry’s general perception has evolved since the novel asset class came into the spotlight a few years back. For example, it is no secret that all through 2018, investor confidence in this space has been dwindling. However, Russo believes that Bitcoin’s (BTC) financial upswing over the last eight months has been a turning point for the industry, especially across different social media outlets. Further elaborating on his views, Russo added:
“This is in stark contrast to those invested in the altcoin markets, as many are in disbelief towards the poor performance of their assets. The regulatory environment definitely plays into the latter, as increasing pressure from the U.S. government has undoubtedly hurt investor interest in Bitcoin alternatives (i.e., Binance shutting down to U.S. customers).”
When compared to the previous years, the general sentiment toward the crypto sector has certainly become less hostile. For example, back in 2017, a time when Bitcoin was witnessing astronomical growth, the industry was still facing a lot of heat from many financial experts of differing pedigree. And while the market, at the time, was replete with countless scams (especially Twitter bots) such activities have largely died out now.
As mentioned earlier, a host of recent surveys seem to suggest that more than 80% of all crypto talk online is positive. This number seems abnormally large for an industry that is usually on the receiving end of a lot of criticism from various traditional media outlets. Sharing his thoughts on the subject, Sinha pointed out:
“80% seems about right. Mostly, because that’s the nature of evangelism. Most of us on social media seems to be crypto-evangelists. However, positive sentiments and bull markets are highly correlated and they seem to be feeding off each other to create a positive feedback loop. If I have to prophesize, the 80% positive sentiment will not be the case during a bear run. Then the voices of the skeptics will become louder and sentiments will turn increasingly negative.”
Tweet interpreters are being used to gauge global investor interest
A number of hedge funds and asset managers are currently turning to software developers to help them interpret and harness sentiment signals to their advantage. Speaking to Reuters on the subject, Bin Ren — CEO of Elwood Asset Management — was quoted as saying that this latest trend of identifying price clues from tweets and other social media messages is slowly turning into an “arms race for money managers.”
To put things into perspective, it can be seen that the costs involved with conducting such types of research analyses are quite steep. As per Andrea Leccese, president of New York-based investment firm Bluesky Capital, a simple bot-driven Twitter data exploration can cost firms anywhere between $500,000-$1 million.
Will increasing regulations stifle the industry’s growth?
Ever since Facebook announced its decision to enter the digital asset market — via its much-hyped stablecoin offering called Libra, which is backed by the Libra Foundation — the regulatory noose surrounding this space seems to have tightened considerably. However, contrary to popular belief, a number of crypto analysts seem to believe that increased regulations can be a good thing for the industry.
Cointelegraph spoke to Mohanned Halawani, the founder and CEO of Crypto PR, one of the first blockchain-specialized communication firms. He seems to be quite optimistic and believes that some of the latest regulations are actually quite advantageous for prospective investors, especially those regarding security token offerings (STOs) and initial coin offerings (ICOs). Halawani went on to add:
“The SEC has facilitated the emergence of Security Token Offerings which it felt was a more worthy investment vehicle when compared to traditional Initial Coin Offerings… Security tokens allow their investors to get information about the issuer on a fully transparent framework, providing complete visibility on all token allocations. Thanks to the regulatory benefits of these assets, authorities are beginning to their raise their standards among tradable asset classes and even support their implementation.”
Similar opinions are also provided by Joe Mercurio, project manager for Comparitech, who believes that the goal behind these regulations is to ultimately make consumers and businesses more comfortable with using cryptocurrencies on a regular basis. Mercurio shared his thoughts with Cointelegraph:
“I think that government entities will eventually adopt blockchain technology and new cryptocurrencies will begin to emerge. That said, I do believe that the market will remain volatile.”
Whether we like it or not, government regulations are crucial for any financial commodity — be it crypto or otherwise — to gain mainstream acceptance. And while these rules and guidelines may appear to hamper an asset’s growth at times, a majority of these regulations are a step in the right direction. Also, because Bitcoin and other digital currencies are basically tools for individual financial freedom, governments do not want to give up financial control over their citizens.
Simply put, when we see the history of such revolutionary technologies getting adopted by countries en masse’, we are sadly faced with a long and painful path that eventually leads to widespread human well-being.
How much of a role does social media play in shaping the public’s opinion on crypto?
Mercurio, whose core field of work includes the analysis of tweets and other online content to gauge public sentiment, is of the belief that there currently exists a strong correlation between the volume of social media posts related to a particular digital asset and its price. As part of his research, he claims to have often observed spikes in online articles when the price of a specific cryptocurrency changes. Mercurio went on to add:
“Social media posts remain more positive during times of price fluctuation compared to media coverage overall. Online enthusiasm regarding crypto has been overwhelmingly warm. We found that cryptocurrency-related subreddits were 55% more likely than media publications to have content with positive sentiment toward various cryptocurrencies.”
In a similar vein, to look at the impact that social media influencers have on the crypto industry, we can turn to a few high-profile individuals such as Elon Musk and LA Chargers’ star Russell Okung, both of whom have been advocating for the widespread adoption of crypto for quite some time now. In fact, Okung has sent out several requests to the NFL, asking the league (since the start of 2019) to provide its employees with the option of getting paid in crypto — a petition that is backed by fellow NFL star Matt Barkley.
It thus appears as though the crypto market will continue to grow, mainly because people want to find newer economic avenues that are free from the involvement of any corporations or government-controlled agencies. However, a lot of this growth will depend on the use cases that emerge from this space. Also, as social media continues to play an ever-increasing role in arenas such as politics and public affairs, there is no reason to doubt its utility when it comes to crypto adoption.
Coinbase has announced support for the cryptocurrency Tezos on its Coinbase Pro platform starting in August.
Major cryptocurrency platform Coinbase is onboarding the cryptocurrency Tezos (XTZ) to its professional trading platform, Coinbase Pro. As per an official announcement, Coinbase Pro will open up inbound XTZ transfers on August 5.
As the company has done in the past, Coinbase Pro will ramp up to full XTZ trading in four steps: (1) transfer-only, (2) post-only, (3) limit-only, and finally (4) full trading. Additionally, the exchange will document the on-boarding steps on Twitter. All jurisdictions are stated to receive immediate support for the new offering, with the exception of New York State.
The company also notes that Tezos is not available on its main website, Coinbase.com, or its mobile apps.
The Tezos platform
In addition to its cryptocurrency XTZ, Tezos has a platform for crypto-ledgering, which uses smart contracts and Proof of Stake voting.
As reported by Cointelegraph, the major Latin American investment bank BTG Pactual announced that it is planning to shift its security token offerings onto the Tezos blockchain and smart contracts platform. Dalma Capital, who has partnered with BTG Pactual, is also planning use Tezos to tokenize a variety of assets, including real estate, equity, lending, as well as global sports clubs.
In a recent industry move, Tezos hired a former PwC executive as the company’s CFO in June. Tezos Foundation president Ryan Jesperson commented:
“As the foundation continues to provide resources to a growing Tezos ecosystem, the CFO and operations lead will be critical to our success. Roman’s experience makes him the ideal finance and operations specialist for our team. He is already familiar with the opportunities and challenges blockchain projects face and has a deep understanding of the Tezos Foundation from his time at PwC.”
On Monday, OB1, the development team who created the crypto-infused marketplace Openbazaar, launched a new platform called Haven. The application is a mobile version of the Openbazaar marketplace, but also includes social media, end-to-end encrypted messaging, and noncustodial wallet services for a variety of digital assets. The following is a review of the Haven application after experimenting with the mobile crypto marketplace first-hand before the public launch.
The cryptocurrency firm OB1 has launched its second product called Haven, which gives users the ability to access the decentralized Openbazaar network from a smartphone. In addition to the market, the developers have integrated a social media platform that’s similar to Twitter, noncustodial crypto wallets, and encrypted chat. The goal of Haven is to “keep your data and your financial information safe when you shop, chat, and send cryptocurrencies — Using this one-of-a-kind peer-to-peer network means no middlemen or big companies, which means no tracking and no fees,” OB1 explained during the launch.
The application offers pretty much everything the desktop node version of Openbazaar offers, but it does not allow people to trade digital assets. Currently, the platform supports BCH, ZEC, LTC, and BTC and the company has been questioning the public as to whether ethereum should be added. The new mobile application offers four unique characteristics:
News.Bitcoin.com got access to the Haven application on June 15, so we could test the platform and give our readers the ins and outs of the crypto-based mobile marketplace. Haven is available for Android and iOS and takes about 60MB of space on your mobile phone. In order to start an account, the app asks you for a name which is optional, where you are based, the currency you want to be displayed on the platform, and the optional approval of sharing anonymous analytics with OB1.
After that information is complete and a quick user agreement is checked, the Haven application is ready to be used. The first thing you probably want to do is secure your account by backing up the backup phrase and editing your profile page. The process is the same as writing down a mnemonic seed phrase for a traditional wallet, except for Haven the backup is only nine words. After writing down the backup, you can proceed to start editing your profile.
Like Twitter, the Haven platform is a social media app and you can edit your profile adding a profile picture, cover photo, and a description about yourself in the settings. If you happen to be a vendor, you can highlight your store information as well. Haven allows you to post 280 characters of text, pictures, and URL links as well. The posts are uploaded to a public feed that is divided into “most recent” and “trending.” You can like a person’s post, repost it (similar to retweet), airdrop the post’s link, or respond to it with your own message. Since Haven had a head start in beta testing before the public launch, there’s a bunch of users posting on the platform regularly. The profile section itself gives you an overview so you can toggle actions and services like the multi-wallet, a wishlist, notifications for the store and social media, purchase, sales transaction history, and support.
The shopping section is quite large for people who want to spend cryptocurrencies on unique items. You can access this section by tapping the shopping cart at the bottom left of the screen. The marketplace is broken down into categories like electronics, books, games, apparel, sports, vehicles, media, beverages, health and beauty, and a general section that aggregates everything.
If you choose to view a product being sold on Haven, it will show the picture and the seller’s description of the item alongside reviews if there are any. Some Haven sellers have different terms and conditions and return policies. Perusing the platform also shows a great majority of Haven vendors accept all four digital assets, while other dealers accept only one or a few. On top of the general market page, there are featured items shown and highlighted discounts.
The Haven platform also offers an end-to-end encrypted messaging service, which allows you to chat in private with vendors and basically anyone using the application. This means the Haven messenger service encrypts communications so the information can never be seen by third parties including OB1. Two people on Haven could communicate with each other in a private fashion, while the plain text information transmitted is purposely obfuscated.
To access the encrypted chat service on Haven, just tap the caption bubble to message someone or press the “message” tab on the user’s profile page. If issues arise between two people, it is possible to report the user and block them so they cannot contact you using the platform.
Overall the application works well and using the Haven platform interface is fairly intuitive. People can find the application on Google Play and Apple’s App Store. The biggest downside is that Haven has got a long way to go to catch up with the social media incumbents, but Haven’s privacy is a novel change that people have been asking for. However, the social media aspect tied to a built-in crypto marketplace may be enticing to digital currency veterans and newcomers alike. Additionally, privacy proponents will enjoy the platform’s isolated shopping experience and encrypted chat options.
What do you think about the Haven platform designed by the OB1 team? Have you tried this application yet? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.
Disclaimer: Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the mentioned companies, software or any of the affiliates, vendors or services. Bitcoin.com or the author is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article. This editorial review is for informational purposes only.
Image credits: Shutterstock, Haven Privacy, Jamie Redman, Bitcoin.com, and Twitter.
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