Editor’s note: This is a sponsored post by DEFED.
Whether it was earning his PhD in Physics, or collaborating with financial institutions and technology companies in the fintech industry for over 10 years, Mechbill has always had a knack for making complicated processes a lot simpler.
Now, as DEFED DAO (decentralized autonomous organization) Initiator and Core Contributor, Mechbill is out to do the same for web3.
His mission? To lower the barrier to entry and encourage more web2 users to migrate to web3.
Hybrid is the way
"We call it a hybrid model. We think hybrid is the future. We are not working for 100% pure decentralized, or 100% pure centralized. We want to find the right balance, providing customers with a great user experience while giving them control over their assets," Mechbill told Digital Life Asia.
It was in 2020 that Mechbill entered the world of crypto, experiencing first-hand the pain points of users in this space. "I learned a lot by losing money," he quipped.
His experience in the fintech industry and his experiments with using cryptocurrency, buying NFTs (non-fungible tokens), and setting up a DAO have given him the benefit of looking at the web3 industry from an outsider's point of view and adopting a pragmatic approach.
"We want to appeal to a broader market of users," Mechbill said.
He pointed out that while MetaMask has millions of accounts, this user base is vastly dwarfed by the hundreds of millions of users of TikTok, WhatsApp, and other web2 platforms. This is the huge, largely untapped web2 market that he said DEFED wants to onboard to web3.
What Mechbill understands is that web2 customers aren't purists when it comes to technology. They want to benefit from web3 technology while also finding it easy to use. That is why DEFED was built as a web3 super account system whose decentralized infrastructure could support a multitude of applications – including traditional market makers such as financial institutions.
"I think the traditional market-making business that has lasted for hundreds of years has its own value that still exists today. So what we do is we want to make the transaction part fully decentralized. But for the market-making part, we are introducing this centralized way. We have traditional market makers providing liquidity, instead of giving tokens to customers who have no knowledge of marketing," he said.
This, after all, will be more sustainable in the long run, whether during a bull or bear market, and will cater to the needs of more users.
Growing the market
Mechbill emphasized that while blockchain technology is revolutionary and opens the doors to financial inclusion and asset ownership, the irony is that web3 has a high barrier to entry. It is no wonder, then, that only a tiny minority is currently using cryptocurrency. In fact, Singapore-based blockchain firm TripleA has estimated the number of crypto users worldwide to be just 420 million – a mere 4.2 per cent of the global population.
One of the biggest barriers to entry has been the technical jargon and tedious process for onboarding people to web3. For instance, to use a web3 service or play a blockchain game, users must first create a crypto wallet account, such as MetaMask. Creating a wallet involves recording a seed phrase or mnemonic code consisting of 12 or 24 random words. This is what you will need to recover your account in case you forget your password, as the wallet provider does not store your password. After creating your wallet, you need to buy cryptocurrency. Only then can you connect your wallet to the web3 service or blockchain game.
Mechbill said the company experienced firsthand how daunting this barrier to entry was for customers when they first launched DEFED.
"When we were building DEFED, we said, 'Why can't we just transfer crypto to our friend using chat?' So we built the chat function and put it together. That was DEFED 1.0 and we launched our product. But the result was not as good as we had expected, because it was still a little too difficult for customers to use. Because they must have their own wallet address to register and use our functions," he said.
To address this, DEFED recently launched version 2.0, which allows users to create an account using their email address. They can use this to interact with DeFi and other smart contracts on the blockchain. This means account recovery is now just as easy as on web2, and no longer tied to the seed phrase or mnemonic code. Instead, users can simply reset their passwords via email and regain control over their assets.
Web3 made easy
Another way DEFED is lowering the barrier to entry is by focusing on the customer benefits rather than the technology. The company understands that the average user does not care about the technical details, but just wants the product to work seamlessly.
For instance, when you withdraw money from the ATM, you don't need to know the technology behind it. You just want to get your money.
What, then, are the main benefits of using DEFED?
First, DEFED provides a low-cost way to transfer values from one person to another, with a more friendly user interface. In fact, paying is so easy that it is almost like tweeting your friends because DEFED has integrated chat into their system from the start.
Second, DEFED allows users to build their social network – one that they own themselves. Mechbill stressed that even if DEFED as a legal entity somehow crashes, this would do very little harm to their network, and customers would be able to easily reload and rebuild it.
"That is why they actually own their social network and they can reap benefits from their social network on web3," he said.
Third, DEFED greatly facilitates trading.
"DEFED combines the usability of a central exchange with the ownership of a decentralized exchange," Mechbill said.
As the web3 market matures, companies must address the needs not just of those who are already in the space, but also – and more so – those of the millions of web2 users who are just being onboarded.
To accelerate crypto adoption, awareness must spread to the grassroots, in terms that the general public can understand, through an onboarding process that is just as user-friendly as creating a Twitter or Facebook account.
After all, web3 has the potential to change the world. Keep it simple, so everyone can join.
DEFED creates a super account system for users and divides the entire account into asset storage mediums and interaction tools. The DEFE token is both a governance token and a utility token. Users can enjoy these benefits by locking DEFE for a period of time and exchanging it for veDEFE.
Visit www.defed.finance to create your first proxy account in web3.
For more information and updates on DEFED, please visit:
Telegram announcement channel: https://t.me/defedao
Telegram group: https://t.me/+kNvAJoqaVgUxOTll