Coinbase announced on Monday that it plans to sell, trade and issue NFTs as part of an expansion from the cryptocurrency-based roots of the market. Details on how “Coinbase NFT” will do all of this are slim, but the company sees an opportunity. “Just as Coinbase has helped millions of people access bitcoin for the first time in an easy and reliable way, we want to do the same for NFTs,” writes Coinbase vice president of product Sanchan Saxena.
The big idea seems to be social engagement. Coinbase wants to ‘organize your personal feed’ of NFT and display the NFTs you own on your profile so you can connect with like-minded fans of digital cats, punks, monkeys and beyond.
At launch, Coinbase NFT will “support Ethereum-based ERC-721 and ERC-1155,” all NFTs will be on-chain, and there are plans to support multiple chains “shortly after” launch. Besides the organized feed the company plans to introduce, Coinbase NFT looks similar to what competitor OpenSea offers as the current NFT market of the day.
As TechCrunch notes, what appears to be lacking in Coinbase’s plans is any kind of Layer 2 scaling integration, the popular method of reducing the costs and environmental impact of coinage and trading. art on the Ethereum blockchain. NFTs are criticized for how they replicate some of the unfair and speculative parts of the real art market, but they also come with a lot of environmental concerns due to the amount of energy required to run the Ethereum blockchain.
Coinbase’s plans are early and could possibly change, but if another NFT showroom / trading room arouses your curiosity, the company already has a waiting list for early access that you can join.
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