Popular Ethereum DApp Browser MetaMask to Launch Mobile App Version

The mobile app version of the currently most-downloaded Ethereum Chrome browser extension MetaMask was revealed during Ethereum’s annual Devcon conference Oct. 31, according a tweet from the CEO of ConsenSys Joseph Lubin.

Lubin, whose New York-based Ethereum blockchain software firm and incubator ConsenSys has been working on MetaMask since 2016, stated in the tweet:

“Everyone’s favorite Ethereum browser extension is coming to your phone. The team is focusing on not being ‘just a wallet,’ but a portal to the world of all things blockchain.”

MetaMask, an extension available for Chrome, Firefox and Brave with more than one million downloads in Google’s Chrome Web Store, currently allows users to run Ethereum decentralized applications (DApps) in their browser. The extension also serves as a web-based non-custodial wallet for Ethereum and ERC-20 tokens.

Also at Devcon4, on Oct. 30, the Ethereum developer that co-authored the ERC-20 token standard, Fabian Vogelsteller, introduced a new model for Initial Coin Offerings (ICO), dubbed called ‘reversible ICO,’ that seeks to better protect investors.

The same day as MetaMask’s announcement, Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin made a keynote speech at the event, unveiling the roadmap for Ethereum 2.0, also referred to as Serenity. When asked about the particular date of the release, Buterin answered evasively that it was “really not so far away.”

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MetaMask Adds Optional Block of Top Ethereum Decentralized App

Cryptocurrency wallet and Ethereum decentralized app (DApp) extension MetaMask has blocked the most popular DApp for Ethereum, 333ETH. The Next Web reported on the block Friday, September 28.

333ETH promises “lifelong” payouts of Ether (ETH) to investors’ wallets via smart contracts upon an initial down payment. The latest in a series of popular Ethereum DApps to attract scam accusations, it is currently ranked the most popular on monitoring site DAppRadar.

In comments on Twitter, MetaMask said it had opted to create the block, which it added it would make optional, due to the 333ETH DApp being an “active scam.” MetaMask claimed it was acting in users’ best interests.

“This site was never the most used Dapp, and it was actively phishing people,” the extension’s official Twitter account wrote Thursday.

“We will be adding the ability to skip our block page, we don’t mean to tell people what they can visit, but this site is an active scam.”

Some of the most used Ethereum DApps this year have been products including Fomo3D and PoWH 3D, both of which openly admitted they were not financially sound investment opportunities.

Fomo3D, for example, describes itself as an “ironic jab at the cryptocurrency ICO space, putting every player in the terrifying and tempting position to Exit Scam everything and run away with massive life-changing amounts of real Ethereum.”

According to DappRadar, 333ETH currently holds over 7000 ETH ($1.58 million) in its smart contract.

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Crypto Daily News | Bitcoin (BTC) Bull Run, Petro Coin, and MetaMask

On today’s segment of Crypto Daily News, we’ll cover the thriving Bitcoin (BTC) and the cryptocurrency market, Venezuela’s president trading the national currency for one tied to its ‘Petro Coin,’ and MetaMask being removed from the Google Chrome store for a few hours.

Crypto Daily News: July 26th, 2018

Crypto Daily News: Bitcoin (BTC) and the Crypto Market

Bitcoin has been on a nine-day bull run, and currently, the cryptocurrency is still sitting above the $8,100 mark.

Crypto Daily News
Source: CoinMarketCap

At press time, BTC is trading at $8,193.45 a coin, up 0.14% in 24 hours. For the week, Bitcoin is up 10%, and for the month, the cryptocurrency is up 32.50%.

Nearly all of the top 15 cryptocurrencies are trading in the green today, and the total crypto market is sitting just above the $300 billion mark.

Crypto Daily News: Petro-Backed Coin Takes Over Venezuela

The Venezuelan president, Nicolas Maduro, just made a major announcement that his country will be replacing its national currency. Currently, the bolivar is Venezuela’s national currency, but the country has been in a steep recession for quite some time making the currency practically useless.

The new bolivar Soberano will make its appearance into the country next month and will take the place of the bolivar. According to a local news source teleSUR, the president states that this new currency will be “anchored” to the oil-backed Petro cryptocurrency.

The Petro was launched back in February in an effort to save Venezuela from its steep recession but received global backlash in doing so.

According to teleSUR, Maduro said:

“The economic reconversion will start on August 20 definitively with the circulation and issuance of the new Sovereign Bolivar, the new monetary cone [sic] that is going to have a new method of anchoring the Petro.”

The president believes that the new currency will alter the financial situation of the country radically. Many global leaders, as well as Venezuela’s own congress, has deemed the Petro coin ‘illegal‘ but it is slowly making its way into the country’s financial system.

Venezuela will strip five zeros from the bolivar rather than just the three that had been initially planned. It remains unknown if this desperate attempt will work, considering the country’s soaring inflation is expected to reach a million percent this year, the article claims.

Crypto Daily News: MetaMask Removed From Google Chrome Store

The Ethereum-run browser extension, MetaMask, was removed from the Google Chrome Web Store unexpectedly yesterday. The app was listed again just five hours later, with no clear indicator as to why it had been removed in the first place.

MetaMask was not given a clear reason why its app was removed, but the company has published a medium post outlining its ‘retrospective view‘ of the situation.

>> TADA: First Blockchain-Powered Ride-Hailing App Launched in Singapore

Featured Image: Depositphotos/© mdkhalil1

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MetaMask Browser Extension Pulled From Google Chrome Store for 5 Hours, ‘Unsure’ of Cause

MetaMask, a browser extension for interacting with the Ethereum network, was pulled from the Google Chrome Web Store, it announced in a tweet Wednesday, July 25. The app has since been listed again, the company confirmed in a post five hours later.

MetaMask is one of the oldest and widely used decentralized apps (DApps) on the Ethereum network, serving as an important gateway for the network’s users.

According to MetaMask’s official Twitter account, the company is “unsure” of the reasons for Google Chrome’s decision to temporarily delist its extension from the store:

“PSA: MetaMask has been delisted from the Chrome Web Store. We are unsure of why this is the case and we will update everyone as we get more information. All other browsers are unaffected.”

The company stated that users who already have the extension installed on their Chrome browsers “should be unaffected” in the short term, but new installs would be unavailable for some time.

While the app was delisted, Augur, an Ethereum-based prediction market protocol, tweeted a warning to its users to not download the MetaMask extension that was actually present in Google Chrome’s store, as it was a fake, phishing application.

Following the app’s reappearance in Chrome’s store, MetaMask urged its followers to stay tuned for a “formal retrospective” of the event:

“PSA2: We are back on the chrome webstore. Stay tuned for a formal retrospective from the team.”

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MetaMask Wants to Let You Visit the Distributed Web of Tomorrow in the …

One of the most promising concepts of second-generation blockchains is that of dApps (or “decentralised applications”). These are apps built on top of a blockchain. To date, few have made the headlines (with the exception, perhaps, of CryptoKitties), but there is a an increasingly large amount being pushed to the Ethereum mainnet, and even more in the works — State of the Dapps lists a range of projects in various stages of development. MetaMask will let users interact with these dApps using only their browser. 

Bitcoin Magazine spoke with James Moreau from the MetaMask team to get a grasp of how their platform grants access to the growing ecosystem of games and applications on the Ethereum blockchain.

“MetaMask reduces one of the major headaches of using dApps,” Moreau said. “That is, running a full Ethereum node. Before MetaMask’s arrival on the scene in 2016, users would need to use a client such as Mist to interface with the blockchain. Now, with a few clicks, anyone using Firefox, Brave, Opera or Chrome can install MetaMask and interact directly with the blockchain from inside their browser, by injecting the web3 API, the JavaScript framework for Ethereum which allows dApps to scan the network.”

On top of facilitating access to decentralized applications, MetaMask also functions as an encrypted storage vault for Ethereum addresses. Users are able to generate multiple accounts, in which they can store Ether and ERC20-compliant tokens. It further supports various testnets (Ropsten, Kovan and Rinkeby), for experimentation with projects in beta. If users are already running a full node, they can tether the software to it.

The protocol has been praised for the simplicity in which it grants access to the infrastructure built atop the Ethereum blockchain. Evidently, it has been a popular extension, having reached its millionth download in early February 2018. It has clearly appealed to users who may have otherwise been dissuaded by the prospect of setting up a full node and dedicating disk space to storing the blockchain in full. Its integration with both Truffle and Ganache has further cemented MetaMask’s place in dApp development toolkits.

The devs seek to facilitate cohesion with projects in the crypto space and recognize the integral role MetaMask plays across the board: DEXs (or decentralised exchanges) are of critical importance in the shift to a fully-decentralised iteration of the web, and applications such as MetaMask are invaluable to safeguarding private keys when interacting with potentially vulnerable sites — take the recent EtherDelta hijacking where, despite the compromise of the site itself, data stored in MetaMask was kept safe (operating much like a hardware wallet).

In terms of competition, there are very few with similar offerings, said Moreau:

“When it comes to lightweight clients, the only other platform that springs to mind is Cipher, a mobile dApp browser working on iOS and Android. To call it competition, though, would be somewhat misleading — the two projects are complementary, with Cipher focusing on catering to the mobile market while MetaMask seeks to optimize the desktop side of things.”

At present, the MetaMask team hasn’t made it a priority to port the project to a mobile medium — the developers’ short-term focus is to improve the overall user experience (offering more versatility when it comes to transferring tokens) and to revamp the current UI.

“Security is one of the team’s primary concerns. In and of itself, the extension has no known attack vectors — user data is stored locally and vaults encrypted with passwords. The biggest outside threats are those rampant across the crypto space — phishing and malware. MetaMask has a built-in detection system for filtering phishing attempts and will warn users of potentially risky transactions before executing them,” Moreau explained.

So far, there have been issues with security breaches pertaining to MetaMask’s support (it should be noted that it is a third-party provider, the extension was unaffected), and a recent bug resulted in users being locked out of their accounts. Being an open-source project, though, anyone is free to vet the code and take on bounties set by the team.

MetaMask received capital from Ethereum’s DEVgrants and Consensys Labs, which backs a diverse range of projects including the aforementioned Truffle, Pangea and Infura.

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