On Jan. 17, the blockchain and cryptocurrency company OB1 released Openbazaar version 2.3 which provides users with the ability to use a multi-currency wallet within the marketplace. Since then, there’s been a large number of added listings and an increased amount of people trading cryptocurrencies in a peer-to-peer fashion.
Experimenting With Openbazaar Version 2.3 and the New Multi-Currency Wallet
With Openbazaar 2.3 now out, I decided to explore the recently added features to give readers of news.Bitcoin.com an insight into the platform. The Openbazaar marketplace has been out for a while now and OB1 released a 2.0 version last year. The latest protocol version 2.3 gives users a multi-currency wallet allowing them to store, send, and receive bitcoin cash (BCH), bitcoin core (BTC), litecoin (LTC), and zcash (ZEC). Before, Openbazaar users were once restricted to choosing a single currency to operate with on the platform.
The Openbazaar download page offers three operating system choices.
In order to experiment with the new version, I downloaded the 2.3.0 release for Mac OSX, but the application can be used on a Windows and Linux operating systems as well. I backed up my existing Openbazaar app and then opened the .dmg file I downloaded from the official landing page. After giving my computer permission to run the new file, Openbazaar opened as it usually does and I was greeted by my home page.
The multi-currency wallet supports four cryptocurrencies and OB1 developers say ethereum (ETH) will be added next.
The differences you will see from the prior version are in the wallet section, which reveals a BTC, BCH, LTC, and ZEC multi-currency wallet. Each wallet does basic operations like sending and receiving and there’s also a log for recorded transactions. The wallets also tell you the value of your cryptocurrency holdings using a local fiat currency. Inside the wallet section is a tab that allows users to create a cryptocurrency trade listing, which means they can swap cryptos in a peer-to-peer fashion.
After clicking the “view listings” tab it is noticeable that users are trading a bunch more coins than when I visited the platform during my last Openbazaar review. There are so many more listings now when you select trades for all four cryptocurrencies. Some trades I noticed were quite fair, set at only 2-5 percent above spot value, but there are other trades that were 995 percent above market value. Still, there are plenty of traders and listings available with a large variety of the 1,500 available digital assets enabled on the marketplace.
Since our last review, there has been a significant increase in traders buying and selling cryptocurrencies in a peer-to-peer fashion.
Many of the traders are rated and you can view some of their other listings as well to see if they are reliable. If people are in search for a place to trade cryptocurrencies without revealing their identity and going through the hoops of a KYC process, then Openbazaar might entice them. Moreover, if desired, they can run an Openbazaar node using the privacy-centric Tor software.
Connecting to a trader in order to swap BCH for XMR.
In order to make a trade, simply choose the kind of cryptocurrency you are interested in swapping. For instance, if you chose to trade BCH for monero (XMR), you will find the vendor W.H. Lewis who is charging 3 percent above spot rates for this trade. All of Openbazaar’s trade listings can be filtered by cryptocurrency. A trader will sometimes list how much they have in inventory and in this case Lewis’s XMR inventory says “unknown.” However, this particular vendor allows the trade to be moderated by a verified Openbazaar moderator. Purchasing and selling digital assets is not much different to checking out your items after choosing to buy physical goods. Traders have different rules on how they settle the crypto trade on Openbazaar and these will vary between vendors, especially with premiums and settlement times. Most trade guidelines are clearly stated on the trader’s listing page.
Traders explain how to execute exchanges with them and some offer a verified Openbazaar moderator to oversee the deal.
Marketplace Listings Increase
Moving on to the marketplace section where users sell other types of goods and services there’s been a noticeable influx of vendors selling wares. Four days ago the r/btc community noticed this trend when BCH listings spiked from 1,000 to 5,200. Another notable sight I saw on the marketplace was how litecoin listings had around 4,800 on the OB1 browser. Zcash listings hover at around 4,600 listings at the time of publication. BTC listings total 11,400 but while surfing through the listings on the marketplace, it clearly shows that many vendors have decided not to take the ‘maximalist’ route and have chosen to accept multiple cryptocurrencies since the upgrade.
Over the last week, BCH listings have spiked from 1,000 to 5,200. Listings include comics, music, books, clothing, art, and more.
Openbazaar 2.3 definitely adds more variety to the platform and the number of listings added since the release on Jan. 17 shows vendors like the fact they can accept more cryptos. The trading section could still use a lot more liquidity than what is offered at the moment. The platform may suffice for a person who wants to obtain some crypto in an anonymous manner, but won’t be good enough for someone looking for deep pools of liquidity. Still, there’s been a significant spike since the startup added all four cryptocurrencies, and OB1 says ethereum support is near completion and will be added soon, alongside other coins.
It seems many Openbazaar vendors have simply opted to accept all four cryptocurrencies since the wallet upgrade on Jan. 17, 2019.
Overall, the platform continues to improve and its user base and a number of product listings have increased a great deal. It still needs to gain mainstream traction, which might not happen until cryptocurrencies themselves gain mass adoption. Until then, Openbazaar’s marketplace has seen slow and steady growth and the multi-currency wallet has opened the platform to more people.
What do you think about the new Openbazaar version 2.3 with the multi-currency wallet? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.
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Image credits: Shutterstock, Openbazaar, and Jamie Redman.
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