Coinbase introduces Web3 functionality with hot wallet and dApp browser

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Coinbase introduces Web3 functionality with hot wallet and dApp browser

By Sam Grant - min read
  • Select Coinbase users will access Ethereum dApps and NFTs via the Coinbase app
  • The crypto exchange has also temporarily moved away from plans to triple staff following a $420 million Q1 loss

Crypto exchange and trading platform Coinbase has announced the introduction of Web3 functionality. A small number of users will be allowed to access products on the Ethereum ecosystem, including decentralised applications such as SushiSwap and non-fungible tokens on marketplaces such as OpenSea and the newly launched Coinbase NFT.

According to the official announcement published on Monday, the introduction of Web3 will allow users to explore a new set of opportunities right from the Coinbase app with the new dApp wallet and browser. The capabilities are managed by multi-party computation (MPC) technology, a cryptographic securing protocol that facilitates dedicated on-chain wallets.

Notably, the dApp wallet would be co-custodial, meaning the private key to the wallet is stored by both Coinbase and the user, hence some element of self-custody. Coinbase Director of product management Rishi Dean explained that this approach was taken to ensure there’s an option of recovery in case access is lost.

“This means if you lose access to your device, the key to your dApp wallet is still safe and Coinbase can assist in recovery through our live support,” he said.

However, even with plans to allow the consumer to enjoy decentralisation with activities such as swapping, borrowing and lending, only a select few will initially benefit, as the service is currently constrained to a few Android users residing in the US. 

The rollout is set for next Monday.

Coinbase puts brakes on ambitious hiring plans

Recent market conditions have proven disastrous for crypto entities all over the sectors, including exchanges. Coinbase is one of those feeling the heat and is now readjusting to the new weather. The exchange’s COO Emilie Choi indicated in an update to the hiring policy that the firm is shelving plans to triple staff as communicated heading into this year.

“Heading into this year, we planned to triple the size of the company. Given current market conditions, we feel it’s prudent to slow hiring and reassess our headcount needs against our highest-priority business goals,” an excerpt from a letter previously sent to employees read. “Headcount growth is a key input to our financial model, and this is an important action to ensure we manage our business to the scenarios we planned for, specifically the potential adjusted Ebitda we are aiming to manage to.”

Choi tied the decision to current market conditions and the need to focus on priority business goals. With the change of plan, she said the company’s now intent on ensuring the recent hires are well settled to ensure success.

Coinbase’s Q1 financial report, released last week, showed that the exchange logged a net loss of $430 million in Q1 this year.