Binance launched the testnet of their decentralised exchange (DEX) last week so I thought it was only appropriate to give my initial thoughts on the user experience (UX). The testnet is not a live product and is a great way to gain community feedback and make improvements. Hopefully this review is considered when they are making changes!
What is the Binance DEX?
“Binance DEX is a decentralized order matching engine,
powered by the core Binance Chain technology.”
“Binance DEX is a modern and secure marketplace for issuing
and exchanging digital assets, and no-one other than you holds your keys. Trading your favorite assets has never been safer.”
“BNB, currently an Ethereum ERC20 token, will be migrated to
Binance Chain to become the native asset of the new blockchain.”
The Binance DEX User Experience
a) Standardisation of design
As soon as I looked at the Binance DEX interface I instantly recognised many features that are currently on the standard Binance exchange such as the design of the order book and trade history. These similarities are something that I like to see as users of the original platform will feel much more comfortable using something they are already familiar with. It means that there will be functionality that the users will already know how to use correctly which contributes to great UX but also a clever move by Binance as it will inevitably mean less support tickets for them.
Whilst standardising much of the exchange, Binance have also been able to add a fresh feel to the site. They have switched up the position of most features and as you can see they have put the order book and the pairings on opposite sides whilst also moving the order functions to the bottom right apposed to be being central. The reason for this leads into my next point…
b) Above the fold design
One change in the user interface (UI) is the above the fold design. This is what we instantly see on a web page without having to scroll down. Binance have adopted this feature by ensuring that users cannot scroll down when using the DEX as everything they need to access is instantly in view. Looking at the original Binance exchange, you currently have to scroll down to view open orders and order history. It now makes sense why they have repositioned the order functions. To ensure it fits on the screen along with everything else. I’m glad to see Binance have made this change and hope they will considering implementing something similar to the original exchange.
I was going to write an in-depth paragraph about how there is a lack of customisation. I have seen many users on Twitter talk about how they would like to be able to customise the page to suit their needs. However, maybe it isn’t so easy to implement when trying to keep a level of consistency with the above the fold design. I could be wrong as I’m not a developer but if we could customise and simultaneously keep this feature, that would be a win-win situation.
I know I would personally like to be able to make the chart bigger without going full screen as do many others. Hopefully this is something that the Binance team can work out and implement into a future release. However, to reiterate- that’s the whole reason for releasing a testnet version first.
Gain feedback > Make changes > Iterate the process.
d) Creating a wallet
I know this isn’t part of the design as such but it is still part of the user’s experience when using the end-to-end service of the Binance DEX. (User Experience is much more than just UX Design!) I thought the tutorial at the beginning explaining the process of creating the wallet and managing it going forward was brilliant. However, the underlying problem (not just for Binance but for crypto as a whole) is the complexity of accessing your wallet.
Firstly as an experienced digital wallet user, I personally liked the Ledger integration as that is perfect for me. There are three ways to access your wallet which are via Ledger (recommended), Keystore file or Mnemonic Phrase. I think when ‘Average Joe’ see’s these options for the first time it can be quite intimidating and overwhelming. I asked a friend of mine who is a crypto noob what a keystore file was and they had no idea. Downloading that file with the long ugly name and keeping it safe just doesn’t seem practical for everyone. Although I’m aware this is a broader issue in crypto, I mention it now because if there is anyone who can tackle this issue, it’s probably CZ.
Overall I feel that there are plenty of positives to take from the Binance DEX testnet launch but still plenty of improvements that can be made. Many of these things will be raised by the community during this testnet period and then it’s over to Binance to implement these changes. I’d imagine that many regular Binance users are pleased with what they’ve seen so far but there is an argument that people coming from alternative exchanges may expect more from the platform. Binance are seen as the leaders by many in this market so expectations are high and many people are backing the Binance DEX to be the first ‘successful’ DEX in the space whilst others argue that it is not truly a ‘decentralised’ exchange.
Regardless of what we think, I’m sure many people will be using this platform to trade and I’m looking forward to seeing Binance improve it’s UX over the coming months based on user feedback.
Follow me on Twitter 🙂
- I have not been paid by Binance to write this article. This is something I volunteered to do due to my background in UX.
- All opinions and views within this article are my own.
- The Binance link above is my referral link.