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It is possible to add the Coinbase layer-2 to the MetaMask crypto wallet

For some time now, the famous MetaMask crypto wallet also supports Base, which is the layer-2 of Ethereum developed by Coinbase. 

However, in order to use Base in MetaMask, you need to manually activate this network.

Coinbase layer-2: Adding Base to the MetaMask crypto wallet

When you open your MetaMask wallet, in the settings menu you will find a dedicated section specifically for the various supported networks. 

The default network is obviously Ethereum, but there are also others that are not activated by default. 

To activate Base, simply search for it and check the status column. 

If the Base network is not found in that list, it is necessary to add it manually, using the “Add Network” or “Custom RPC” functionality.

To add and activate it, you need to enter the details of the Base network, namely the network name (Base), the URL, the chain ID (8453), the symbol of its native currency (ETH), and the block explorer URL.

At that point, all you have to do is save, and you will receive confirmation from MetaMask that the Base network has been successfully added to your wallet. 

Note that by default MetaMask only supports Ethereum, so any other network needs to be activated in this way, even though the main ones are already available and to activate them you just need to check the status column on the networks page in the wallet settings. 

However, there is still an official guide available that shows all these steps with screenshots. 

Beyond Coinbase Base: Ethereum layer-2 in MetaMask crypto wallet

MetaMask is a crypto wallet specifically designed to manage transactions on Ethereum, so it’s not surprising that many of the networks that have been added over time are Ethereum layer-2 networks. 

Moreover, after the Dencun update on March 13th, the average cost of fees on Ethereum’s layer-2 has literally collapsed, while on layer-1 (i.e. the Ethereum blockchain) it has remained substantially unchanged. 

For example, on Arbitrum, the most used layer-2 of Ethereum, it now only takes about a thousandth of a dollar to have a transaction approved in a few seconds. 

On Base instead, about 3 are needed, which are however in line for example with the costs on Lightning Network, which however does not record on-chain transactions. 

Base was born only last year, while for example Arbitrum has been around for almost three years. 

It should also be noted that layer-2 solutions are a relatively recent development, so much so that Polygon, for example, has only been around for less than 4 years. 

It is now clear that the solution to Ethereum’s scalability problem lies in layer-2 solutions, or rollups as they are often called, and Base is among the solutions adopted by Coinbase to address in particular the issue of high fees, especially on smaller transactions. 

Base and Coinbase

Coinbase is the largest US crypto exchange, and its services are specifically aimed at the average user, or the masses. 

Actually, over the years it has also opened an exchange aimed at institutional investors, called Coinbase Prime, but it is quite different from the original exchange which has always had retail users as its main users. 

For this reason, it certainly manages not only transactions of significant entities, but also many transactions of small entities, on which the fees are likely to weigh heavily. 

Last year, when they launched Base, fees were still relatively high even on Ethereum’s layer-2, because Dencun had not yet occurred. It is not certain that at that time it was possible to imagine that after this update the fees on some of Base’s competitors would have dropped to such an extent. 

Furthermore, if Ethereum is a decentralized network, we cannot be certain of the same thing regarding layer-2. So maybe Coinbase has chosen to prefer using a layer-2 created by itself, rather than one created by others and with a lower level of security than Ethereum. 

For example, in the DeFi sector Base managed to reach almost one and a half billion dollars of TVL, while Arbitrum exceeds 3 billion.

Among the layer-2s of Ethereum Arbitrum is clearly the most used at the moment, but Base has risen to second place in terms of TVL, surpassing Polygon and Optimism, both at 1 billion dollars. 

So Base is performing quite well, surpassed only by Arbitrum. 

The Base network also does not have its own native token, so all tokens claiming to be such are scams. 

It should not be forgotten that Coinbase is a publicly traded company, and its shares are available on the Nasdaq with the ticker COIN. 

The MetaMask wallet

MetaMask is one of the most widely used crypto wallets in the world, especially for Ethereum and its main layer-2 solutions. 

It was even launched in 2016, the year after the launch of Ethereum. 

Its success is also due primarily to its browser extension, which allows you to easily and directly connect your crypto wallet to various websites and dApps. 

This is a non-custodial wallet, meaning that the user is the owner and exclusive custodian of the seed and all tokens.

Among the wallets used as a browser extension, it is certainly the most used, although for other uses it has now been surpassed by other solutions, such as hardware wallets. 

Consensys created it and still manages it today. 

Consensys is definitely one of the most important crypto companies in the world in the Ethereum field, if not the most important after the Ethereum Foundation, which is however a foundation. 

Its founder is Joseph Lubin, co-founder of Ethereum itself. 

Although MetaMask is not the official Ethereum wallet, also because there is no real official Ethereum wallet, it is probably the closest thing to it. 

Marco Cavicchioli
Marco Cavicchioli
Born in 1975, Marco has been the first to talk about Bitcoin on YouTube in Italy. He founded ilBitcoin.news and the Facebook group" Bitcoin Italia (open and without scam) ".