OB1, a company of OpenBazaar core developers, has announced that the online p2p marketplace and distributed network of buyers and sellers that allows users to sell products directly for bitcoin will be launched this November.

Unhappy Ebay users

On OpenBazaar, shops will be hosted on nodes, similar to the decentralized Bitcoin network. With no charges and settlement disputes, it creates an unrestrained marketplace unlike other e-commerce platforms like Ebay, which have been banning bitcoin supporting users and listings.

OpenBazaar core developer Brian Hoffman stated in an interview with Jason Calacanis that “I think the last time I saw there was a satisfaction survey for eBay 79% of people were happy. So that’s a huge number of people that are unhappy selling on eBay.” Thus, OpenBazaar will be targeting the 21% of the unhappy users and give them an opportunity to try out the platform without fees.

With the US$1 million investment led by Andreessen Horowitz and Union Square Ventures, the Open Bazaar development team has focused developing the core platform and planning out the project’s roadmap. Additionally, all core developers have left their previous jobs to dedicate themselves to the project full time.

“Since we have limited time and resources, we’re dedicating it all towards making the new release something incredible,” announced the Open Bazaar team, which includes Brian Hoffman, Chris Pacia, Mike Wolf, Nikolas Korasidis, Sam Patterson and Washington Sanchez.

“Now that several of the core developers (myself included) have formed a company and received funding, we’re changing our approach to development. We won’t be doing incremental releases every few months, but instead put out a larger version 1 release later this year,” continued Patterson, OpenBazaar Operations Lead.

OpenBazaar core developer Brian Hoffman

- OpenBazaar core developer Brian Hoffman

OpenBazaar Beta

OB1 has already released a walkthrough video demo for OpenBazaar Beta 5 and has allowed other developers to test the existing code. However, they also stated that they will not make any changes to the user interface and other features except bugs. Hoffman explained:

“OpenBazaar is not a formal protocol but a set of rules that everyone who participates in the marketplace agrees to in order to do trade.”

“The key piece here is that [added buyer or seller protections are] optional though. In eBay and PayPal, a lot of that is subsidized through the fees, right? So everybody has to pay for it. I could have a thousand great transactions — no problems — and I still have to spend 10 to 12 percent take rate to those companies. For what? That’s a lot of money for huge vendors that don’t have issues,” Hoffman added.

As of now, the developers have focused on redesigning the User Interface, Distributed Hash Table and the User Datagram Protocol. Until the next beta launch, the OB1 team plans to rework critical sections and fix major bugs.