Coinbase Base Network: Use Cases and Features
By Noah Washington September 6, 2023
- Coinbase recently completed the launch of its Base Network platform
- It is a new scalable and versatile platform that aims to support web3 developers
- Base introduces pioneering capabilities, like its official bridge for Ethereum transfers and support for the Wormhole cross-chain protocol
The launch of Coinbase's Base layer 2 blockchain network on August 9, 2023 generated tremendous excitement and anticipation across the web3 community. Developers from all corners of the world have been eager to build on new infrastructure and unlock its potential.
In the time since the mainnet went live, there's already been an impressive array of applications deployed on Base. The Base mainnet release seems to mark the start of a new era. With its focus on scalability, security and usability right out of the gate, Base offers developers a robust foundation upon which to build.
What is Base?
Base is a new layer 2 blockchain that was developed by Coinbase in collaboration with Optimism. It is designed to be an Ethereum sidechain that provides a more scalable and lower-cost environment for building decentralized applications compared to deploying directly to the Ethereum mainnet.
Layer 2 solutions like Base are able to handle more transactions. Source: CoinDesk
Base leverages Optimism's Optimistic Rollup technology to batch transactions off-chain before settling them on Ethereum. This allows it to handle a higher throughput of transactions compared to Ethereum while still benefiting from Ethereum's security. By building on Base, developers can avoid the congestion and high gas fees frequently seen on Ethereum mainnet.
Background and Timeline
The launch of Base's developer network marked a major milestone for Coinbase and the blockchain community. Coinbase is a popular cryptocurrency exchange platform that allows users to buy, sell, and store various cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ether.
Initial excitement brewed when the beta for Base unveiled on February 23rd, whetting developers' appetites for the capabilities to come. But the real buzz began building on July 13th with the mainnet launch, providing the robust tools developers needed to collaborate and push boundaries.
Rather than rushing to market, Base took a strategic phased approach, ensuring developers were fully prepared to hit the ground running on the more robust mainnet. This gradual rollout generated immense anticipation and momentum, priming the network for a momentous launch.
The months of extensive testing and refinements paid off when Base's mainnet officially opened. This long-awaited "network for builders" represented a giant leap forward, fulfilling its vision to empower developers to innovate and create without limits.
Use Cases on Base
The recent launch of social media app Friend.tech, which was built on Base, has directly fueled significant growth for the platform. Friend.tech allows users to tokenize their social media accounts and sell fractional ownership, leveraging Base's technology to do so. CEO of Coinbase, Brian Armstrong confirmed that Friend.tech accounts for most of Base's recent increase in transactions per second. Armstrong tweeted that Base has exceeded 16 TPS, surpassing Ethereum's capacity, with Friend.tech generating the majority of this transaction volume. The integration with Friend.tech has rapidly expanded Base's daily active users to an estimated 136,000.
Early daily active users for Base during the launch. Source: BeInCrypto
Base's versatility and pioneering capabilities make it an appealing option for transforming the blockchain landscape. A major advantage is Base's official bridge, which streamlines cross-chain transactions by letting users seamlessly transfer Ether between Ethereum's mainnet and Base. This simplifies bridging between chains and unlocks new potential for those seeking a more efficient and flexible blockchain solution.
Furthermore, Base's integration of the Wormhole protocol enables frictionless transactions across diverse blockchains. This interconnectivity expands possibilities beyond what single-chain networks can offer. By supporting cross-chain bridging, Base delivers on its vision of cultivating a versatile, borderless ecosystem where users and developers can harness the strengths of multiple blockchains. With innovative bridging features and cross-chain interoperability, Base opens up new use cases and empowers people to do more on an efficient, integrated network.
The journey leading up to Base's official launch has been filled with much anticipation and excitement, yet it has not come without its fair share of challenges that have tested the platform's resilience. The initial success in garnering interest and support from app developers was dampened by technical difficulties that arose during the launch.
Some investors experienced major losses trading experimental cryptocurrencies on Base.
The memecoin Pond0x (PNDX) launched on Base. Savvy crypto traders who knew how to use Base's backend bridged over $2 million into PNDX. However, the price of PNDX soon dropped close to zero after a bug was discovered in its transfer function. Another Base memecoin, Bald (BALD), saw approximately $2 million in losses when its developer removed liquidity.
RIP to BALD token. Source: CoinGecko
Coinbase's Base network aims to encourage mainstream blockchain use. Though Base recognizes its roots in cryptocurrency, its goals stretch beyond digital money. By making blockchain more accessible to millions of users and developers, Base wants to highlight the technology's varied potential as well.
Excitement and Optimism Despite Early Challenges
The launch of Base Network has been met with excitement and hope throughout the blockchain community. Coinbase's commitment to building an inclusive developer ecosystem shows its dedication to decentralization and a future that benefits everyone.
Although there have been obstacles, Base's potential to transform crypto and blockchain is clear. As the network grows, its influence on the industry will likely be revolutionary. With Base paving the way, the path to widespread adoption of web3 seems brighter than ever. The network's evolution continues, but its ability to reshape the landscape is already evident. Despite early challenges, Base is poised to catalyze the decentralized future of which so many have dreamed.