OpenSea releasing an app was just a matter of time, but some are questioning the timing of its debut. The app will be launched on the Google Play and Apple Store this week despite a fair bit of controversy surrounding a recent insider trading scheme.
Despite this, OpenSea is moving forward with plans to launch the app to its user base of a few hundred thousand. According to a blog post from OpenSea, the new app will allow users to connect their current profile and discover new NFT via the advanced search feature. You will be able to save your favorite NFTs and view various collections and stats on each item.
The blog goes on to talk about other new features that OpenSea will be adding to its desktop site. Upgrades included an easier way to make bids on NFTs, the ability to create digital art without having to create an official collection, and a streamlined listing process. The new listing process is aimed at reducing the confusion that many first-time users struggle with via a three-step process.
Questionable timing for app launch
While the product is a huge step forward for the NFT marketplace, it comes in the wake of a controversy surrounding an insider trading scheme by a high-ranking employee.
The scheme involved OpenSea’s Head of Product, Nate Chastain. Chastain allegedly used his knowledge on which NFT would be prominently featured on the site, would buy them before they were publicly available. Chastain would then turn around and sell the NFTs for a quick profit.
The scam went unnoticed until a recent Twitter post noted that Chastain operated several secret wallets that bought the front page drops before they were listed.
OpenSea quickly respond via blog post confirming that “one of our employees” did use insider information to make an extra buck on the side. The blog did not specifically name Chastain but transaction records released on Twitter show that he was behind the scandal.
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