BitBay and its BAY token: A starter’s guide
When bitcoin was first introduced to the world in 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto, many believed it would revolutionize currency and global trade as we know it. Almost a decade later though, that promise remains largely unfulfilled, primarily due to the absence of a proper marketplace embracing cryptocurrencies, a problem that Bitbay hopes to take care of.
While bitcoin has definitely been the currency of choice for some darknet markets, as was revealed by the infamous Silk Road scandal of 2013, a legitimate decentralized marketplace still hasn’t made its way to the masses.
What is Bitbay
Iterating upon the unfulfilled promise of cryptocurrencies radicalizing the trade sector, BitBay is a free, decentralized marketplace that facilitates the buying and selling of goods between users. Unsurprisingly, the platform employs blockchain technology to achieve this goal and also leverages smart contracts for escrow related services to work.
Unlike alternatives such as eBay or even Amazon, BitBay’s decentralized nature allows transactions to occur directly between the two parties, without the need for middlemen. As a result, the approach not only reduces the overall commission that a platform such as eBay would take but also promotes a greater standard for security, privacy and transparency during a transaction.
Launched in 2015, BitBay has seen a lot of development progress and use over the years, with one user reporting a successful sale of five acres of land on the platform in late 2017.
Bitbay: How it works and its key features
It is no coincidence that BitBay is a combination of the words, bitcoin, and eBay. Unlike the latter though, BitBay is confident that its model will not have the same restriction of geography, payment method and identity. More clearly, because the development team has little to no control over the functioning of the platform and everything is controlled by the users themselves, BitBay can be used by anyone from anywhere in the world.
Bitbay: Platform and technology
On BitBay, buyers and sellers digitally agree upon a smart contract during a transaction, after which the trade takes place. If the seller does not hold up their end of the deal, for instance, the smart contract will make sure the other party receives their funds back. The platform also has a reputation-based system that can be used to judge the trustworthiness of buyers or sellers.
Bitbay Coin: Use and utilities
Like any other blockchain-based project, BitBay has its own digital currency that it uses to facilitate payments between users. The token, named BAY, will be also be used explicitly during the execution of smart contracts. This approach is used primarily because a decentralized marketplace such as BitBay cannot hold fiat currency in escrow.
In the near future, the BAY token will also be dynamically pegged, allowing parties to peg an exchange rate between the digital currency and fiat at the time of finalizing a deal. Given that volatility is a currently a major concern for cryptocurrencies, this has the potential to encourage more people to use the BitBay platform.
BAY token price
In April 2018, the price of BitBay’s digital token, BAY, is roughly $0.0448 USD. While a lot higher than its valuation even a year ago, it suffered a similar decline as the rest of the market since its January 2018 all-time high of around $0.34.
BitBay’s initial coin offering actually came to an end several years ago, specifically on November 15, 2014. The ICO managed to raise over 1,300 BTC in total, at a maximum cost of 300 satoshis per token. The price of BAY has essentially skyrocketed since then.
While storing the BAY token was initially only restricted to BitBay’s desktop wallet client, the development team has since released web and mobile-based alternatives. Naturally, a whole host of platforms are supported, the full list of which can be found here.
Bitbay: Can you mine Bitbay?
Most new cryptocurrency users tend to believe that they can earn an additional share of a digital token purely by mining it. While that definitely holds true in some cases, it is not in the case of BitBay’s currency. Since BAY uses the proof of stake consensus mechanism, the token cannot be mined. Instead, wallets that hold the most amount of BAY get to decide the authenticity of transactions on the network.
Bitbay: How to buy Bitbay
Ordinary consumers looking to buy the BAY token can do so on a number of major cryptocurrency exchanges, similar to other digital tokens. At the time of writing this article, BAY trading pairs are available over at Bittrex, C-cex, Cryptopia, Upbit and a few others. The full list of supported exchanges is available on the BitBay website.
2018 is an important year for BitBay, especially with a number of improvements expected to be unveiled in the second quarter of the year. The UI (user interface) preview for the web marketplace, for instance, is expected to be out sometime in June, with the white paper for dynamic pegging to follow a month later. The final rollout of both those features is expected by September 2018, marking a successful launch of the platform.
Bitbay: Team and founders
Initially founded in 2014, the BitBay project describes itself as being “later taken over by the community”, with David Zimbeck now at the forefront. Apart from Zembeck’s role as the lead developer, the team boasts a diverse group of developers, designers, community managers and marketing people.
Like most platforms, the BitBay development team maintains a Twitter account for one-way platform-related communication to its users. It currently boasts over 17,000 followers.
While the BitBay subreddit is rather sparsely populated in its current state, the developers do make sure to communicate important information on there from time to time.
As is standard for blockchain companies, BitBay also runs an official Telegram group to collect user feedback and host general discussions regarding the state of the platform.
BitBay developers have, so far, not made any public blog posts on Medium describing technical details of the platform.
Beginning with an announcement thread from 2014, BitBay has had a decent presence on the Bitcointalk forum, albeit primarily only for platform program updates.
Given that the BAY token has been listed on exchanges for quite some time now, the coin price can easily be found on the Coinmarketcap website.
With BitBay offering important security and privacy-related features such as encrypted communication, decentralized hosting, anonymity and cold staking, it is perhaps the safest marketplace in the world for users to exchange goods and services for money. Given that it employs smart contracts and proof of the stake consensus mechanism, it is also clear that the development at BitBay is cutting edge.
That said, the platform is still a few months away from release and will face the initial struggle of attracting a decent user base. Without an active pool of buyers and sellers, it is not possible for BitBay to actually grow, both in reputation and size.
Bitbay: Final thoughts
With BitBay offering the world a feeless and convenient alternative to popular e-commerce websites like Amazon and Craigslist, the decentralized revolution of cryptocurrencies that bitcoin promised to bring in may finally be coming true. Time alone will tell us how successful this endeavor will be.