What is a decentralized exchange?
This is becoming a popular question throughout blockchain and crypto communities are traders and investors continue to hear horror stories of centralized exchanges (bittrex, binance, huobi etc) getting hacked and unknown crypto thieves running off with $millions of tokens, not to mention rising trading fees and commission eating into their investments and pretty clear evidence of insider trading from some of the biggest in the industry. In the new world of decentralization, this simply makes no sense.
Step up the decentralized exchanges or DEX (our top picks listed below) who quite simply remove the middle man and provide platforms for peer to peer trading in the cryptocurrency markets. This often results in free trades, wallet to wallet, meaning your funds are never stored with a centralized exchange, or any middle man for that matter and can be made directly from your Metamask, Ledger or Trezor wallets. With some incredible projects now launching platforms, we’re no longer tied to the centralized crytpocurrency exchanges of old and we can take back control of our crypto, for free.
At Fluidity Summit 2018 in Brooklyn, 0x also announced their new 0x 2.0 version, another step towards a decentralized future with the integration of ERC-721 tokens. You can see the whole Fluidity Summit, featuring Michael Novogratz and Joseph Lubin alongside the AirSwap founders on their You Tube channel – Fluidity
Best Decentralised Exchange Platforms
AirSwap Decentralized Exchange
AirSwap is one of the newest and most user friend DEX on the market, although we should state they are not officially a decentralized exchange and are actually a ‘decentralized marketplace‘, powered by search and with a pure focus on peer to peer trading. With 100% no fee trading, AirSwap is due to lead the way in the DEX space and with the backing of Consensys, it’s hard to back against this project bring the future of trading.
With a one of a kind UI and unique functionality that takes not only crypto trading but trading as a whole to a whole different level, could see this be the route to mass adoption of new audiences that have so far been scared away from the space by the over complicated (and centralized) trading platforms that dominate the space.
Waves is one of the biggest blockchain product out there and the Waves DEX is their solution to decentralizing token trading. The premise here is a combination of both decentralized and centralized trading technology, ensuring you’re always in control of your funds on the blockchain, but utilising matching services provided by the major exchanges. A useful combination it would seem.
Built on the Waves blockchain product, the system is not limited to ERC-20 trades, but more allowing trades with BTC/ETH for waves tokens and those built on their protocol. A large trading volume makes this a very usable platform with plenty of market makers in place to fulfil orders across the 72 listed currencies.
The platform is available both online in your browser and as a downloadable client, both in Beta at time of writing.
Idex provides an ERC-20 decentralized token trading platform, popular as one of the original DEX products to hit the market and with one of the highest trading volumes out there. Their charts and tools are pretty substantial, with useful order book overview to boot. Like others, IDEX exchange can be used with your Metamask and Ledger wallets for easy and safe transactions and with over 130 tokens on board, there are plenty of trading options available to enthusiasts and expert traders alike.
Convert and send tokens instantly on the Kyber Network DEX platform, with ease of use and simplicity at it’s core. Huge liquidity, 0% trading fees and a collection of some of the biggest tokens out there, makes Kyber a market leader in the DEX industry and a favourite with trading enthusiasts and traders alike.
Open Ledger DEX
A DEX built on Bitshare’s Graphene technology, OpenLedger is a Denmark based solution for decentralized trading. One of the easier platforms to not only sign up to but to use as well, with 125 trading pairs to work with and a vast volume to ensure smooth trading.
Termed ‘Trustless Trading’ the Radar Relay decentralized exchange allows for easy trading of ERC-20 tokens, with the feel of a powerful centralized exchange. Fully functional with Metamask, and with gas charged directly for each trade, the user experience is certainly one of the best on the list.
Currently in beta and focused on product launch, the Radar Relay platform has done well to introduce enough volume for a positive trading experience across 40 tokens.
Self professed Dezentralized Bitcoin Exchange, the Bisq.Network is an open source desktop application to facilitate the buying and selling of Bitcoin for international currencies and altcoins. With many of the main features apparent throughout this list, the platform provides instant transactions, securely and without the need for a middleman.
At the time of writing, their website is actually offline…I’m sure it’s all ok!
Oasis is a decentralized exchange from MakerDAO, although the platform is not fully launched yet. Currently there’s good trading volume for trading pairs with Eth and the MakerDAO currencies such as MKR and DAI. As an Ethereum Dapp, Metamask is required to get you up and running on the trading platform. With limited currencies on board currently, a daily trading volume of close to 90 BTC is pretty strong.