OKX turns on its L2 mainnet, joining the exchange chain club

X Layer is a zkEVM validium running on Polygon’s CDK tech stack


Sanjay kj/Shutterstock and Adobe modified by Blockworks


Crypto exchange OKX released the public mainnet of its zkEVM rollup, X Layer, late Monday.

This new platform integrates with the OKX Exchange and OKX Web3 Wallet, enabling users to bridge assets easily, similar to Coinbase’s Base optimistic rollup and Bybit’s Mantle Network spin off.

The major difference is X Layer’s use of the Polygon zkEVM CDK, which has been live on testnet since November.

Read more: Centralized exchange OKX launches decentralized L2 with Polygon CDK

This makes it part of the so-called “Aggregation Layer” (or AggLayer), Polygon’s bid to address UX-pain points like liquidity fragmentation among Ethereum layer-2 networks, Polygon CEO Marc Boiron said.

The platform is expected to quickly host a wide array of dapps, including well-known DeFi offerings like Curve and QuickSwap, according to a blog post by Chief Marketing Officer Haider Rafique, published Tuesday.

“The impressive roster of talented developers who have already started to build on X Layer is a testament to the potential of the network,” Boiron said.

The AggLayer currently consists of the Polygon zkEVM and Astar Network, but asset transfers between them are not yet available, an OKX spokesperson told Blockworks.

X Layer cuts down on transaction fees by using an alternative to Ethereum for data availability (DA), technically making it a validium rollup, similar to Polygon’s plans for upgrading its own PoS chain.

Read more: So your layer-2 is ‘secured by Ethereum’ — what does that mean?

The exchange’s token OKB serves as a gas token, so the chain is tailor-made for users branching out from the exchange experience to Web3.

Otherwise, using the chain requires bridging OKB from another chain, like Ethereum. An OKX spokesperson told Blockworks that an OKB faucet was not currently available on mainnet.

Polygon’s zkEVM uses ETH, as do most rollups, but does not yet make use of Ethereum’s blob space created following the recent Dencun upgrade. So it will be a few weeks before Polygon’s own chain sees the benefit of cheaper alternatives to Ethereum call data.

Crypto.com also has a zkEVM-based rollup in development — Cronos Chain — that uses rival zkSync’s rollup tech stack.

Read more: Cronos broadens scaling roadmap from Cosmos to Ethereum

Looking ahead, X Layer aims to enhance wallet services, improve transaction speeds and provide comprehensive support and documentation for developers, Rafique wrote.

OKX has increasingly taken an “ecosystem” approach, including the launch of its own Web3 wallet that competes with MetaMask.

The exchange is a contributor to the Polygon CDK and plans to “provide an advanced tech-stack for builders in collaboration with Polygon Labs, according to Rafique.

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