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Coinbase Introduces New Features

coinbaseCoinbase is adding new features to its wallet app. With the overall goal to cross into Web3, the product will focus on API-first, DeFi-first, and self-custody first, according to Chief Product Officer Surojit Chatterjee.

To streamline participating in self-custody and Defi, Coinbase is integrating its Pay software development kit (SDK) within its wallet. Consensys’ Metamask, the leading browser-based Web3 wallet will also be adopting Pay, said Chatterjee. Users will be able to purchase cryptoassets with fiat and transfer them to the self-custody wallet of their choice through Pay. A guest checkout option will become available for non-Coinbase users.

As long wallet addresses can become complex for identification purposes, “To reduce complexity, the Coinbase Wallet will allow a user to claim an Ethereum Name Service (ENS) address for free. ENS is just one of several services Coinbase plans to integrate,” a spokesperson told Blockworks.

Coinbase will also be releasing a self-custodial dApp wallet, made possible by multi-party computation (MPC), a cryptographic technique for secure private key management. Users will be able to buy NFTs on marketplaces like Coinbase NFT and OpenSea, trade on Decentralized Exchanges such as Uniswap and Sushiswap, and borrow, lend, or swap through DeFi platforms like Compound and Curve.

Users can access dapps without a recovery phrase. The wallet allows the ‘key’ to be split between the user and Coinbase. This adds a layer of security, if access to your device is lost, the key to your dapp wallet remains safe and Coinbase can assist in recovery through their live support. These assets will first be available to a selective amount of US Android users, with a plan to eventually expand to all users and platforms.

The wallet hopes to also support blockchains that are compatible with the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) as well as a few particular others, including Solana.

Why Branded Web3 Names Will Become Ubiquitous in Crypto

old mac computerThink the obsession with branded web3 crypto domains is an overhyped fad? Unless your email address is something like 81032840732@email.com, you’ve already bought into the branded address movement, just like everyone else finally did 30 years ago.

In the early days of personal computing, network enthusiasts were assigned a string of numbers to communicate with each other on CompuServe. Randomly assigned and formatted as 7 octal digits, this growing community was ported to the public internet in 1989. Almost overnight, they became reachable from outside their network through an email address linked to their numerical ID such as 7xxxx.xx@compuserve.com.

CompuServe effectively led America’s internet march forward until a rival, America Online, posed a threat. Offering users the option to select a memorable branded name and email address as early as 1992, the AOL branded name concept became ubiquitously known as a “Screen Name.”

CompuServe ignored it, partially because its aging technological infrastructure wasn’t designed to escape the numerical name system. But also because Americans and people the world over still weren’t sure what it was they liked about access to the Information Superhighway. Many critics compared the two on price. But as AOL began to crush CompuServe, CompuServe finally had no choice but to try and make its service more appealing to the public. It began with screen names.

“Finally it has happened!,” an announcement said. “CompuServe users can now forget about hard to remember email addresses with numbers (such as 72223.10@CompuServe.com) and start using ‘normal looking’ email addresses like the rest of the world! … If you’re a CompuServe user, just GO REGISTER to choose your new email address (actually, this is an alias to your current CompuServer email address, so you can use both addresses if you like)… If you’re not a CompuServe user, but frequently send email to CompuServe accounts, you might want to find out what their ‘easy to remember email alias’ is.”

Twenty million American adults had access to the internet that year. America Online would go on to register 35 million subscribers alone by the year 2002, impressing upon an entire generation the value of one’s “screen name.”

Today, almost nobody would ever think to use a string of random digits to identify themselves, yet that is exactly what crypto addresses have accomplished. In the case of ethereum, for example, a randomly assigned string of 42-chars is a hark back to the pre-1996 CompuServe era on steroids.

Perhaps if they were still around, they’d publish a more modern version.

“Finally it has happened! Web3 users can now forget about hard to remember crypto addresss (such as 0x8018asdfdssd809128320912428dfakd998) and start using ‘normal looking’ addresses like the rest of the world! … If you’re a Web3 user, just GO REGISTER to choose your new web3 address (actually, this is an alias to your current crypto address, so you can use both addresses if you like).”

How Web3 Will Soon Shape Fintech Onboarding

Fintech companies looking to tether customers to their platforms long-term will have no choice but to adopt web3 into their strategies. But how to do that? An easy solution would be to take advantage of the subdomain feature of the Ethereum Name Service (ENS).

With ENS, anyone can create subdomains of .eth domains that they own. It costs gas but the process is simple, simple enough that fintech companies may have an interest in offering a variety of custom ENS names for their customers to choose from.

And if they are successful in getting a customer attached to that name, well then that customer’s entire individual web3 identity will potentially live on the fintech company’s platform. In doing this, it may be smart to offer subdomains of a variety of top-level .eths, even if the branding is unrelated to the fintech company.

Imagine, for example, that a fintech company offered new customers the option to choose any username they want attached from the following options.

  • username.fntc.eth
  • username.rocknroll.eth
  • username.sofun.eth
  • username.blue.eth

A company that tires of its relationship with the fintech company might not feel compelled to change their web3 identity if perhaps rocknroll.eth is the domain their account is registered under. And thus the customer remains connected to the original fintech who controls that subdomain.

web3 signup

Why The ENS .eth Domain Craze Has a Strong Foundation

They say it’s the rarity, simplicity, or utility behind a short ENS .eth domain that has allowed communities like the #10kclub and #999club to crop up seemingly overnight. As the mad dash to mint out 3-digit or 4-digit variations of domains played out last week, some seasoned pros in the NFT scene were bewildered by the conviction exhibited by eager buyers.

But there might be something there, a magic tweet to hang their hat on. Vitalik Buterin, internationally renowned co-founder of Ethereum, not only advertises his own ENS domain (Vitalik.eth), he talked up the value of a three & four-letter name back in 2020.

Of course, he’s also said that the domains are valuable and that ENS is useful.

In the ethereum community, that’s about as close as one could hope for as an endorsement of the value of domain ownership, and particularly for ones with minimal characters.