Base: Everything to Know

By  Beluga Research August 15, 2023

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  • Base is a blockchain platform created by Coinbase, a leading cryptocurrency exchange
  • The platform is designed to facilitate the development of blockchain-based applications
  • It aims to streamline the process of integrating blockchain technology into businesses and applications
  • Offers a range of tools and services, including APIs, SDKs, and a user-friendly interface


Base is a blockchain platform created by Coinbase, a leading cryptocurrency exchange. It is built on Optimism, a "layer 2" scaling solution on the Ethereum network. It is a comprehensive toolset designed to streamline the process of adopting blockchain technology by providing various services and tools. Base is designed to lower the barriers to entry for building decentralized apps (dapps) on Ethereum.

It provides seamless Coinbase product integrations, easy fiat onramps, and powerful developer acquisition tools. Base enables developers to create and manage blockchain-based applications. It also allows them to interact with smart contracts. Businesses can use the Base to integrate blockchain tech into operations. This enables them to provide customers with innovative solutions underpinned by the benefits of blockchain technology. Base is intended to be completely open-source and publicly accessible.

A Brief History

Coinbase, founded in 2012 by Brian Armstrong and Fred Ehrsam, started as a simple platform for buying and selling bitcoin. Over time, it evolved into one of the world's largest and most respected cryptocurrency exchanges. The idea of Coinbase's Base emerged as a response to the growing demand for easy-to-use tools for blockchain integration. Coinbase's leadership recognized this need. Leadership saw the opportunity to leverage extensive experience in the blockchain and cryptocurrency field.

Coinbase's Base was launched as a solution to bridge the gap between the complex nature of blockchain technology. It was announced in February 2023. The platform aims to simplify blockchain integration and business application development through tools. Its goal is to streamline the process and make it more accessible.

Developers and businesses have adopted Coinbase's Base since its introduction. It has become a significant contributor to the advancement of the blockchain ecosystem.

What is Coinbase's Base?

Coinbase Base is an innovative Ethereum layer 2 (L2) solution. It empowers developers to build secure and cost-effective decentralized applications (dapps) for the blockchain industry. Base is an integral part of Coinbase's ecosystem. It enables seamless asset transfers between the exchange and the Ethereum blockchain. Utilizing Optimism's OP stack, Base becomes an interoperable "super chain". Its potential to bridge assets with other chains like Bitcoin and Solana remains undisclosed. Base mainnet was live for developers on July 13 but lacked a functional UI for its Ethereum bridge.

Base plans to charge an initial fee of about $0.10 to $0.20. However, in the future, Base hopes to lower its transaction fees to a bare minimum. Coinbase has explicitly stated that there are no intentions to issue a token for Base. The versatility of Base extends beyond Ethereum, supporting other layer 2 networks like Optimism. It also embraces blockchain ecosystems such as Solana.

Through this integration, Coinbase aims to tap into its extensive user base of 110 million users and $80 billion in assets. The goal is to pave the way for decentralization within the chain gradually. Developers can directly access Base and leverage its fiat onramps, ensuring a user-friendly and efficient experience.

Getting Started

  1. Create a Coinbase account. Users can create a Coinbase account on the Coinbase website or by downloading the Coinbase app.
  2. Verify identity. Users will need to verify identity. This process involves providing name, date of birth, address and government-issued ID.
  3. Download the Coinbase Wallet app. Download the Coinbase wallet app from the App Store or Google Play.
  4. Set up a Coinbase Wallet account. Once users have downloaded the Coinbase Wallet app, the individual will need to create an account.
  5. Select the network menu. In the Coinbase Wallet app, select the network menu and choose "Base" from the ETH Testnets section. This will allow users to connect to dapps that support Base.
  6. Start using Base. Once users select the "Base" network, users can start using Base by connecting to dapps that support it.

Unique Aspects

  1. Ethereum Layer 2. Base is an Ethereum layer 2 network providing a secure, low-cost, developer-friendly platform for dapp development. It allows anyone, anywhere, to build dapps easily.
  2. Native token. Base does not have a native token, unlike some other L2 solutions. This means that users and developers do not need to buy or hold a new token to use Base. It uses ETH as its native currency and supports any ERC-20 token.
  3. Optimistic rollups. Base uses optimistic rollups as its scaling technique. This means transactions are executed on Base and periodically submitted to Ethereum as compressed batches. This reduces the gas fees and congestion on the main chain while still inheriting its security and finality.
  4. Onchain the next online. Base aims to onboard 1B+ users into the crypto-economy by making on-chain the next online. On-chain refers to building applications that run entirely on decentralized networks. On-chain applications offer users more control, transparency, and ownership over data and assets.


  • Easy Integration. Coinbase's Base offers APIs and SDKs for seamless integration of blockchain technology into applications. It simplifies the process and saves businesses time and resources. These would otherwise spend on developing blockchain solutions from scratch.
  • Robust Security. Coinbase's Base offers high-level security measures. This helps ensure blockchain data and transactions are handled safely and securely. This also gives businesses and their customers confidence in the integrity of blockchain-based services.
  • Lower Costs. Base reduces the gas fees and congestion on the Ethereum main chain. This is done by executing transactions on Base and periodically submitting them to Ethereum as compressed batches. This means users and developers can save money and time when using Base.
  • User-Friendly Interface. Coinbase's Base offers a user-friendly interface. It simplifies the management of blockchain integrations and applications for businesses and developers. This reduces the learning curve and makes the process more efficient.
  • Big features, small fees. Base has full EVM equivalence with low fees. It also supports a developer platform. Users can enjoy increased transaction speeds and improved scalability and efficiency on Base.


  • Potential Privacy Concerns. Coinbase's Base offers robust security measures. However, using a centralized platform can raise potential privacy concerns. Users' transaction data is stored on the platform, which could be a target for hackers.
  • Limited Functionality. Base is currently in testnet phase and only supports basic transactions and transfers. It does not support smart contracts, complex logic or custom data types. This means that developers have yet to build advanced dapps on Base.
  • Dependence on Coinbase. Base is integrated with Coinbase products and distribution. Base is dependent on Coinbase's availability, performance and policies. Coinbase may face downtime, technical issues, or regulatory changes. These factors may affect the functionality and accessibility of dapps on Base.
  • No insurance. Coinbase does not offer insurance for funds stored on Base. This means that users could lose funds if there is a security breach.
  • High gas fees. Gas fees are paid to the Ethereum network to execute transactions. These fees can be high, especially during periods of high network activity.