Waterhole, a Bitcoin marketplace and escrow trading platform, is to implement Zcash mobile wallet and escrow trading.

Both features are currently live, with all operations working in test mode with TAZ (test alpha Zcash) and will switch to ZEC, which are real Zcash coins, after the altcoin is launched today, Oct. 28.

What is Waterhole?

Watehole is a rapidly growing app developed by a team based in Tuspark, Beijing. The company has made quite an entrance to the scene earlier this year, promising to deliver solutions to many problems of Bitcoin trading and e-commerce security.

The Waterhole mobile app allows its users to find local Bitcoin buyers and sellers and make instant OTC escrow deals with them. There are several layers of security in place such as ID, photo and video verification.

In addition to offering Bitcoin trading, the app also features a decentralized marketplace similar to OpenBazaar, where users can list their own goods and sell them to interested parties.

As claimed by the developers of Waterhole, an in-built chat feature, with end-to-end encryption and ability to send image and video files, provides a channel of communication, which is claimed to be more secure than that of the Telegram messaging app.

All these features work in combination to make Waterhole one of the most secure and convenient cryptocurrency trading platforms currently in existence.

TAZ - test coins

Plans to add Zcash wallet and trading features were announced by the team of Waterhole back in September. Since then, these options were available in the app in test mode, with all transactions being conducted in TAZ, the tokens of the alpha testnet of Zcash.

The users of Waterhole who feel enthusiastic about the new altcoin, were encouraged to create multiple accounts in the app in order to test the wallet and trading features. However, it is important to note that TAZ are test coins, and until the real Zcash tokens are released, users should not conduct any deals with real money, fiat or Bitcoin.

What is Zcash?

Zcash is a cryptocurrency with a focus on privacy and anonymity. It is currently in the pre-launch phase, with the mining of its genesis block scheduled for today, Oct. 28, 2016. Its proprietary technology zk-SNARK is claimed by the developers to be able to process all transactions in the network without disclosing involved parties and amounts.

What that means is that, unlike Bitcoin, Zcash is expected to be truly anonymous. When Bitcoin was just released, it was hailed as a completely private and untraceable way to send money. It was later discovered that that is not the case. Indeed, public addresses in the Bitcoin network are not directly tied to the people behind them. However, it is still possible to trace them back via different methods of Blockchain analysis and forensics.

That is only possible because all Bitcoin transactions, along with the public addresses of their senders and receivers, are broadcast on an openly accessible ledger, which is the Blockchain. This level of traceability should not be a problem with Zcash, as it doesn’t publicly broadcast any private data to begin with.

Zcash has proven to be a somewhat controversial altcoin with many detractors claiming that it will not be able to perform its promised functions due to crucial limitations of the underlying technology. Cointelegraph has covered some of the main points here.

Despite the ongoing debate, Zcash remains highly popular with its audience, which makes its partnership with Waterhole all the more beneficial to both parties.