NFT marketplace OpenSea plans to integrate Layer 2 protocol Immutable X

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Non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace OpenSea will support the use of the Layer 2 scaling solution Immutable X.

According to a press statement, integrating Immutable X will allow the marketplace to offer OpenSea users a "gas-free trading experience without sacrificing the security of the Ethereum network," according to Nate Chastain, OpenSea's head of product. 

"We’re rolling this out not only to better support existing Immutable X projects, but for future game developers and players on OpenSea who will benefit from this scaling solution,” Chastain said. 

Immutable is an Australia-based company that is focused on creating a more accessible and seamless trading platform, backed by investors like Naspers Ventures, Galaxy Digital and Apex Capital Partners.

Immutable X is the first layer-2 scaling solution for NFTs on the Ethereum blockchain with instant trade confirmation and high scalability – providing, according to the company, at least 9,000 transactions per second and zero gas fees. The protocol is expected to go live this spring, based on past comments from the development team.

Layer 2 solutions are meant to help scale applications by handling transactions off the Ethereum blockchain, known in this context as a Layer 1 network. Within the scope of NFTs, the nature of these tokens can make them expensive to move or trade on-chain. Essentially, teams building layer 2 solutions are trying to make these minting and trading processes more scalable, faster, and trustless.

There are several different types of solutions, including NFT-specifics like Dapper Labs' Flow, sidechains like Matic and Ronin, plasma channels, and state channels. Immutable X is considered a "ZK-rollup," which uses validity proofs. This means once a cryptographic proof has been accepted on-chain, users receive instant confirmation that the transactions were valid and immutable.

According to a blog post written by the Immutable team, when it comes to NFTs, this means users can withdraw immediately and no one can attack the system -- regardless of how many funds are going through the system. ZK-rollups aim to significantly speed up and increase the number of transactions carried out in a given time period. 

The development comes soon after OpenSea raised $23 million in a funding round led by a16z. 

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