Coinbase’s Base network has unveiled its roadmap titled “Path to Mainnet,” outlining the necessary steps for the network’s official launch. While specific dates are not provided, the roadmap identifies five criteria that need to be met before the mainnet release, with two criteria already fulfilled and three remaining.
The Base network testnet was initially introduced by Coinbase on February 23. Designed as a layer 2 solution for Ethereum, it leverages Optimistic Rollup technology to enhance scalability and reduce transaction fees. Notably, the current testnet of Base is connected to the Goerli testnet version of Ethereum, rather than the mainnet version where most users hold their assets.
The Base network is built on the OP Stack, a codebase shared with the Optimism network.
According to the Base team’s announcement, progress is being made toward the mainnet launch, but certain criteria must be satisfied first. The first requirement is a successful execution of the Regolith hard fork, which implements security-focused modifications to the deposit process. The second criterion involves an infrastructure review conducted with the OP Labs team. Both of these criteria have already been met, as stated in the announcement.
The third criterion entails a successful upgrade of the network to Bedrock. Bedrock, as explained by the Optimism team, will introduce lower fees, shorter deposit times, and various other enhancements. The Optimism upgrade to Bedrock is scheduled for June 6, but the specific date for Base’s version of the upgrade has not been disclosed.
The fourth and fifth criteria involve the completion of internal and external audits without critical severity issues and the demonstration of testnet stability, respectively. No specific dates have been provided for these two remaining criteria.
Since the testnet launch, there has been considerable speculation regarding the types of applications that will be built on the Base network. In March, the Base team called upon developers to create an inflation-pegged stablecoin called “flatcoin” for use in Base’s decentralized finance apps, as well as an on-chain reputation system. In response, Masa Finance ported its soulbound token protocol to the testnet in April to address the reputation system request.
However, not all parties have welcomed Coinbase’s venture into building its own network. Decentralization advocate Chris Blec argued in March that Base would need to verify user identities due to its centralized “sequencer,” which he believes compromises user privacy. The Base team has assured that the sequencer will gradually transition to a decentralized model over time.