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IPFS News Link • Business/ Commerce

Since its launch on April 5th, the first truly decentralized marketplace, OpenBazaar,


Since its launch on April 5th, the first truly decentralized marketplace, OpenBazaar, has been growing steadily, both in popularity and in features.

Due to the peer-to-peer nature of the platform, it is difficult to quantify how popular it is, but there are various secondary indicators. The most apparent is how many users are following the @OpenBazaar account inside the program.

OpenBazaar June 2016

The default selection when installing the program is to follow the channel for updates. While there are currently 16,675 followers, there is no way to see how many have unfollowed the channel, or how many may be duplicate accounts.

BazaarBay provides further indications. The first search engine for OpenBazaar products, modeled after Google, offers statistics on their search indexing. There are various charts that can be used to gauge network strength, although none of these statistics have been checked by an outside party and cannot be verified.

BazaarBay currently reports over 300 online nodes, out of a total of more than 27000. The service has indexed almost 16,000 products, although finding them all is difficult and duplicate or out of date items may be included.

OB listings June 2016

BazaarBay's charts for item listings and ratings left in the last 24 hours. In the future, the OB1 team plans to build their own crawler to create more official statistics.

The number of ratings, currently at 580 according to BazaarBay, is perhaps the closest comparable for a sales figure, because it is very easy to leave a rating for users once a purchase is completed. However, people looking for maximum privacy and those in a hurry will often skip leaving a rating.

A second OpenBazaar search engine, Duo, offers some live stats on users and listings as well, but the newer service has collected fewer results.

There is also a similar app that lets you browse listings on and Android smartphone. BazaarHound is a gateway application that allows you to browse the OpenBazaar shopping network from your mobile, and according to the site, lets you make purchases through their app as well.

Although you can't run a store with BazaarHound, it appears to be everything a customer would need, complete with access to their OpenBazaar account and the ability to leave reviews for vendors.

Another way to look at OpenBazaar's popularity is to see who's using it. The Foundation for Economic Education (FEE) provided an in depth report on OpenBazaar, and they opened a storefront (@FEEstore) for selling books and clothing.

While major brands have yet to make an appearance, many big names in bitcoin already have storefronts, including Ledger hardware wallets and BitMain mining rigs.

While the platforms growing popularity can be gauged indirectly, the growing functionality is more easily distinguished. There have been various changes since launch, with the latest version alone implementing 25 updates.