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ShapeShift DAO Moves One Step Closer to Decentralization, Releases Dapp

2 mins
Updated by Ryan Boltman
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In Brief

  • ShapeShift DAO releases a new open-source DeFi super app, developed by the community.
  • The app comes about 15 months after the ShapeShift community transitioned into a DAO.
  • Future developments on the app include support for more wallets and an NFT aggregator.
  • promo

ShapeShift DAO has launched its decentralized, multi-chain, multi-protocol DeFi app on iOS and Android.

The revised app, launched on Oct. 19, 2022, allows users to trade crypto using different crypto wallets.

Multi-chain, multi-wallet support

According to ShapeShift, users who have downloaded the new app with the old app still on their phones should see a welcome splash screen on the new app. After this, they must choose between the “Create Wallet” and “Import Wallet” options. If they choose “Import Wallet,” they can choose to enter their email address and password, and their wallet seed phrase will be retrieved from ShapeShift’s servers. At press time, the app only supports ShapeShift’s Native Wallet and WalletConnect.

ShapeShift Multi-Chain App Interface
Source: Erik Voorhees

The app presents users with token pairs from major decentralized exchanges in a unified interface and doesn’t charge users.

In addition to Bitcoin, Ethereum, Avalanche, Cosmos, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash, the multi-chain app supports the Avalanche DeFi ecosystem. It also supports decentralized cross-chain swaps via THORChain without Know-Your-Customer requirements. THORChain allows users to trade an asset on one blockchain for an asset on another blockchain in a trustless manner. It achieves this using bi-directional cross-chain bridges that link blockchains at the protocol level.

According to ShapeShift co-founder Erik Voorhees, the community developed the no-KYC app with no CEO and formal employees. The app’s front-end “is redundant over IPFS,” the decentralized interplanetary file system. The backend consists primarily of centralized blockchain data managed by the ShapeShift foundation, which it also plans to decentralize.

ShapeShift DAO path to decentralization

In July 2021, ShapeShift announced that it would be transitioning into a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO). According to Voorhees, DAOs are the new post-Industrial-Age organizational paradigm that allows money and finance to emerge naturally, without a centralized authority. 

Subsequently, it launched a FOX governance token to its million-strong community, including Uniswap, MakerDAO, Curve Finance, and Balancer. It airdropped 25% of the FOX tokens in ShapeShift DAO’s treasury.

The DAO’s plans include integrating NFT marketplace aggregators into the application. Additionally, the DAO will create an interface to aggregate borrowing and lending rates from different protocols to provide users with the best rates.

DAO regulation still murky

Regulation of DAOs and decentralized protocols in the U.S. has so far not been clear-cut. The U.S. Commodities and Futures Trading Commission fined blockchain protocol bZeroX (later Ooki DAO) and founders Tom Bean and Kyle Kistner for violating CFTC regulations. The agency saw Bean and Kistner as the individuals responsible for the DAO’s actions. It is not clear how they came to this conclusion.

Following the suit, the agency’s commissioner pointed out the lack of clarity regarding liability.

“We cannot arbitrarily decide who is accountable for those violations based on an unsupported legal theory amounting to regulation by enforcement while federal and state policy is developing,” said Commissioner Mersinger.

Following the motion, venture capital firm Paradigm filed another motion to say that only those responsible for registering the DAO under the Commodity Exchange Act should be held liable. The VC firm suggested that summons should be directly served to members in question instead of through general methods that categorize all members similarly. 

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David Thomas
David Thomas graduated from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal in Durban, South Africa, with an Honors degree in electronic engineering. He worked as an engineer for eight years, developing software for industrial processes at South African automation specialist Autotronix (Pty) Ltd., mining control systems for AngloGold Ashanti, and consumer products at Inhep Digital Security, a domestic security company wholly owned by Swedish conglomerate Assa Abloy. He has experience writing software in C,...