Crypto

OKX Launches 'X Layer' with Polygon, Targets 50M Users

OKX Launches X Layer on Polygon, Exits India Amid Regulatory Hurdles, Aiming to Shape Web3 Infrastructure

By Max Weldon

4/16, 02:26 EDT
Bitcoin / U.S. dollar

Key Takeaway

  • OKX launches X Layer, a Polygon-powered layer-2 blockchain, enhancing its ecosystem with over 170 dapps for its 50 million users.
  • X Layer aims to be the "highway infrastructure" of Web3, indicating a strategic move by OKX amidst other exchanges developing layer-2 solutions.
  • The integration with Polygon's AggLayer promises unified liquidity across chains, marking a significant advancement in blockchain interoperability.

OKX Launches X Layer Blockchain

OKX, ranking as the fourth-largest crypto exchange globally, has officially launched its layer-2 blockchain network, X Layer, on its public mainnet. This move is part of a broader trend among major crypto companies to establish their own distributed networks. Utilizing Polygon's Chain Development Kit (CDK), X Layer, formerly known as X1, leverages zero-knowledge technology to offer developers a customizable toolkit for building their own chains. This development follows similar initiatives by other leading cryptocurrency exchanges, such as Coinbase with its "Base" blockchain and reports of Kraken's interest in developing its own layer-2 solution.

Integration with Polygon's Ecosystem

OKX's developers are set to contribute to the CDK’s codebase, ensuring X Layer's integration with Polygon’s expansive ecosystem through the AggLayer. This integration aims to unify liquidity across various chains developed using Polygon's technology. Mark Boiron, Polygon Labs Chief Executive Officer, highlighted the significance of this integration, stating that OKX’s 50 million users would now have a seamless path to onboarding to X Layer and other chains connected to the AggLayer. Launched initially on a testnet in November, X Layer is poised to support over 170 decentralized applications (dapps), with plans for more in the pipeline.

Vision for Web3 Infrastructure

OKX envisions X Layer and similar layer-2 chains as foundational elements of the Web3 world's infrastructure, likening them to highways that facilitate access to dApps, which serve as marketplaces, and self-hosted wallets, which act as vehicles. Haider Rafique, OKX Chief Marketing Officer, emphasized the role of these technologies in shaping the future of Web3, providing a robust framework for the development and deployment of decentralized applications.

OKX Exits India Amid Regulatory Challenges

In a significant development, OKX announced its decision to cease operations in India by the end of April, citing local regulatory challenges. This decision comes in the wake of India's move to bring digital asset service providers under its anti-money laundering framework in March 2023. OKX, which had not registered with the Financial Intelligence Unit India (FIU IND) by the end of 2023, advised its Indian clients to close all margin positions and withdraw funds by April 30. This exit reflects the broader regulatory pressures facing crypto exchanges in India, with several exchanges, including Binance, Kraken, and MEXC Global, being flagged for operating illegally in the country.

Management Quotes

  • Mark Boiron, CEO of Polygon Labs:

    "OKX’s 50 million users now have an easy path to onboarding to X Layer and all the other chains connected to the AggLayer."

  • Haider Rafique, Chief Marketing Officer of OKX:

    "We envision X Layer and other layer-2 chains as the highway infrastructure of the Web3 world, with dApps as the marketplaces and self-hosted wallets as the vehicles that take you there."