Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong has acknowledged that the user experience (UX) of the crypto firm’s mobile app is ‘broken’ and asked for feedback from users, promising to fix some of the most pressing issues in the next two weeks.
For a while now, users of the Coinbase mobile app have expressed their frustration on social media platforms and other app review sites, stating that the app has difficult-to-understand interfaces and an overall clumsy design.
In a thread on X, previously known as Twitter, the exchange’s CEO acknowledged that the platform’s ongoing multi-week festival dubbed the “Onchain Summer” had revealed several flaws with the mobile app.
One thing #OnchainSummer is exposing is just how broken our UX is in the main Coinbase app for NFTs, Dapps, and L2s today. Sorry to say, but true.
If we face truth, we can get motivated to improve it. These need to be first class experiences, and #OnchainSummer is a great impetus…
— Brian Armstrong 🛡️ (@brian_armstrong) August 13, 2023
The festival is a three-week long period where Coinbase celebrates art, culture, gaming, and its community to promote the recently launched Base, its Ethereum layer 2 blockchain. During this event, Coinbase launches new products, does brand activations, and reveals new non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on Base.
Naturally, this is expected to attract more users than other times of the year and hence more feedback on its app’s usability. It has also led to Coinbase’s employees interacting with the app more than they normally would and thus feeling the pain and frustrations firsthand.
According to Armstrong, the event, which runs from August 9 to August 31, has mostly shown weaknesses in non-fungible tokens, decentralized applications, and Layer 2’s user interface.
CEO Urges User Feedback to Improve Coinbase App
As such, the CEO has urged its users to share any information and issues concerning the difficulties they have been facing on the app as responses to the thread on X. He said, “If you have a UX pain point or something not working, send us feedback in the replies to this tweet and we’ll try to prioritize it. Rapid updates next two weeks on the biggest pain point.”
As a result, the thread has seen many responses with the most supported being one requesting a credit card on-ramp. This issue was raised by Racer, a Friendtech developer, who asked that the feature be added to offer quick settlement without the need to create a separate account.
racer asked me to tell you this pic.twitter.com/Mqc6scrPic
— imhiring.eth (@mikedemarais) August 13, 2023
Harj Taggar, a partner at Y Combinator, suggested that Coinbase improve its connection with the mobile app for transaction approval. Taggar stated that the wallet’s Chrome extension could be problematic and occasionally required users to log out and back in before receiving the notification to approve transactions.
In response, Armstrong acknowledged running into the same problem, adding that the bug has been more persistent than expected.
UX Challenges in Crypto
UX has long been an issue in the crypto industry. Many users of many platforms have complained endlessly about the difficulty of using blockchain-based platforms. However, in Web3’s defense, developers have argued that the technology is mostly used in the finance sector, which makes it more important to have a secure and error-free application than one that is easy to use.
One Web3 UI/UX designer, 0xDesigner, addressed the issue on X, saying that Web3 is built to be centered around the user and has an irreversible nature, making it difficult to create a simpler flow.
Web2 vs Web3 UX
I was asked by a reporter from a crypto publication about the disparity between web2 and web3 UX. It’s a meaningful line of questioning that isn’t covered enough. So I’m going to share some half-baked thoughts in hopes that it triggers more discourse.
— 0xDesigner (@0xDesigner) July 12, 2023
“Think of it this way: Web2 is like driving an automatic car. It’s straightforward; you get in, press the pedal and off you go. Web3, on the other hand, is more like driving…. You need to understand the gears, the clutch and constantly monitor the tachometer; otherwise, you’ll damage the transmission or stall the car,” the tweet said, comparing Web2’s simplicity to the complexity of Web3.
Another UI designer, Thomas Ling, echoed these sentiments, saying, “Where a Web2 app may only need to show one step out of five, a Web3 app needs to show all five in order for a user to achieve an action and retain the value proposition of Web3.”
Due to this, Web3 UI/UX designers are “limited” in how they may work “magic” to produce an intuitive and easy-to-use application, Ling explained.
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