On September 2nd, Malta-based cryptocurrency exchange powerhouse Binance announced a voting period for two cryptocurrency futures testnet platforms it has prepared, Futures A and Futures B, and bounties for those who trial them.
The exchange’s wider derivatives plans are rapidly widening, as the company revealed its acquisition of crypto derivatives platform JEX on the same day.
The prize and vote campaign come as a bid to rally community stakeholders to decide which testnet moves forward. Testnets are blockchains that are modeled off a parent blockchain but are used instead for safe experimentation.
Binance had first indicated plans to launch a cryptocurrency futures service back in July, when chief executive officer Changpeng Zhao revealed so at this year’s Asia Blockchain Summit in Taipei. A futures product lets investors make bets on the price of an underlying asset — like bitcoin — and are coming increasingly into focus in the cryptoeconomy as the cryptocurrency derivatives arena is recently swelling.
“The simulation test version will be live in a few weeks,” Zhao said of Binance’s futures offering this summer.
That projection proved accurate for not just one platform but two, with the exchange’s development of multiple testnets for the effort coming as a surprise then.
In its Monday announcement, Binance said the contest period would run between September 3rd and September 8th and would entail a simulated trading competition. Anyone who tests both Futures A and Futures B can then vote on which testnet they prefer.
100,000 Simulated Tethers to Trial the Platforms
Those who participate in the contest will be eligible to win a portion of the 10,000 Binance Coin (BNB) that Binance set aside for test traders. 5,000 BNB of that sum has been slotted for those who perform best on Futures A and the other 5,000 for those who do so on Futures B.
Those taking the dive into the competition will be granted 100,000 simulated tethers (USDT) for trading, and the top 50 traders on both testnets will qualify for portions of the BNB prizes.
Notably, the two testnets are only the latest examples of Binance enjoying the fruit of its own in-house tech, namely in this case the company’s native blockchain, Binance Chain, which underwent its mainnet launch back in April.
March Toward Lending
At this point, it’s no secret that Binance stays busy. Last week, the company made another considerable advance in its general expansionary campaign when it announced Binance Lending, a new service that will let Binance users lend cryptocurrencies in 14-day fixed-term loans.
The initial cryptocurrencies supported by the service include BNB, USDT, and Ethereum Classic (ETC), though Binance has said more assets are coming.
“Just hold your funds in your subscribed Binance Lending product and grow your holdings by accruing interest,” the exchange explains on the offering’s landing page.
The lending rollout arrives as cryptocurrency lending projects like Maker and Compound have become increasingly popular in the cryptoeconomy, particularly in Ethereum DeFi circles.
Major Threads to Watch: Binance X and Venus
Beyond progress on cryptocurrency derivatives and cryptocurrency lending, Binance has made recent splashes in the ecosystem upon revealing its new developer initiative, Binance X, and its new stablecoin project, Venus, which the exchange said would be like an “independent and autonomous, regional version of Libra.”
As for Binance X, it’s a campaign the company announced last week but launched earlier this year that is focused on generally fostering developer innovation around blockchain tech.
“As a platform that is rapidly evolving, there is a need to provide a cohesive way to engage and support developers in our ecosystem, and thus, Binance X is conceived,” the exchange explained.
Announced a few days prior to Binance X, Venus is an “open blockchain project” that will serve as a base for issuing new regional fiat-pegged cryptocurrencies. At the time, CEO Zhao denied the effort was a direct challenge to Facebook’s Libra.
“In fact, this should help Libra, if you think about it,” he said.
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