After seven months of core development, Augur, a decentralized prediction market platform that rewards its users for correctly predicting future events, has officially begun its beta test.

Ethereum-Based Service

The Augur team partnered with Microsoft Azure, tech giant Microsoft’s Ethereum-based “blockchain as a service” product, to launch their application on a decentralized and smart contract-enabled platform. Because most of the settlements, including the payout and betting processes on Augur involve smart contracts, the Augur team decided to launch their application on the Ethereum platform for enhanced efficiency, transparency, security and scalability.

“The most fundamental change is that we’ve fine-tuned our smart contracts so that Augur will scale painlessly to billions in volume,” explained the Augur team.

The Augur beta release also features a completely re-developed user interface, which according to the Augur team, is 75 times faster than the previous Alpha release. The application itself was also redesigned to enable users to create and settle bets quickly. With the experience from the TradeSports/InTrade’s front-end development team, the Augur beta release showcases a successful minimalistic redesign that optimizes user experience and overall website performance.

Turn-Key Solutions

The startup released a series of new features including a Portfolio section, Ethereum key import and export, option to generate multiple-choice and numerical markets, trading metrics and simplified user tutorial.

Using Microsoft Azure, Augur will offer enterprise-level API to companies willing to run an internal version of the application. The implementation of the Augur API will allow firms or applications to integrate the Augur application on their existing platforms, enabling its users to directly process decentralized betting without leaving their applications.

“On Azure, Augur will offer a turn-key solution for enterprises interested in running an internal version of the platform. A company may not want their markets public or may not want to deal with the compliance costs of running a public market,” announced Microsoft Cloud director Marley Gray.

Over the next few months, the Augur team aims to release a new revision of the Augur working paper which features market-driven defences and failsafe mechanisms to eliminate the possibility of data breaches, system attacks and hacking attempts. These core engine improvements and the optimization of the overall platform will enable users to bet on the Augur decentralized platform efficiently, in a more robust environment.