Peer-to-peer marketplaces are quickly becoming more popular in the world of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. With LocalBitcoins and LocalMonero recently taking off, it’s been evident other currencies would see similar platforms moving forward. It appears Ethereum is the next major currency to take the local route, as its version of LocalBitcoins is now open for registration. It will be interesting to see how LocalEthereum performs in the coming months.

LocalEthereum is Worth Keeping an eye on

Buying and selling altcoins has become a lot more convenient over the past few years. Although users will always have to rely on centralized exchanges or brokers to purchase any significant amount of a specific altcoin, things are slowly improving in this regard.  Having more competition in these markets can only be seen as a positive thing; that much is certain. In fact, it appears peer-to-peer marketplaces are the way forward for some of the top altcoins.

Not too long ago, the Monero community was introduced to LocalMonero. It took a page out of the LocalBitcoins playbook by providing a peer-to-peer marketplace for XMR users. This was a positive development, especially considering that using centralized exchanges to buy or sell decentralized currency is not the best way of doing business whatsoever. We need to create more decentralized or peer-to-peer solutions, rather than rely on centralized infrastructure which forces users to give up control over their funds.

This is where LocalEthereum comes into the picture, as it aims to provide a peer-to-peer marketplace service to Ethereum enthusiasts around the world. This platform has been in development for some time now, as the first code was written in late 2016. Adapting the LocalBitcoins concept to Ethereum is not as simple as it seems. While users can currently register for an account, trading will not be available until October 21.

To kick things off, LocalEthereum’s operators will waive hundreds of thousands of dollars in fees to create liquidity on the new marketplace. The goal is to use smart contracts and in-browser cryptography to buy or sell Ether for offline currencies. Converting between fiat currencies and Ether has not been easy up to this point, and has always occurred through intermediaries. LocalEthereum is set up in such a way that users always control their funds regardless of the currency in which it is denominated.

Depositing Ether using LocalEthereum will result in funds being moved to a client-side encrypted wallet. This wallet resides in the browser alone and is not controlled by the platform operators whatsoever. All communication between buyers and sellers employs end-to-end encryption for additional privacy and security. Both parties can also agree to use an escrow system which makes use of smart contract features. The team will be able to read messages only when a dispute occurs. That process involves both parties voluntarily offering the decrypted versions of their communications to an arbitrator.

It will be interesting to see whether or not LocalEthereum proves to be a great addition to the overall community.  It’s a very interesting concept that will surely create new opportunities for Ethereum enthusiasts on a global scale. All things considered, LocalEthereum sounds like a secure peer-to-peer marketplace. It’s also positive to see the operators use native Ethereum technology such as smart contracts, rather than centralizing control and oversight.