WTF is Status? A Decentralized Messenger & Browser for dApps

3 min read

While Facebook and Twitter are still some of the most popular ways to interact online, messaging apps have been steadily gaining popularity. There are several options to pick from depending on if you need encrypted chat, group channels, or communication with your friends across the great firewall of China.

Today’s topic is more than just a messaging app. It is a whole Ethereum mobile operating system…

That’s right. Today we are talking about Status!

The Status beta was released in June of 2018. You can download the dApp to your phone right now on Android and iOS. What makes Status different than other messaging apps is that it’s a decentralized messenger and browser for decentralized applications (aka dApps). They hope to take advantage of the booming popularity of messaging apps to introduce people to the decentralized web.

Built on top of Ethereum’s blockchain network, Status allows you to send cryptocurrencies and smart contracts within its encrypted messenger. Status functions as a wallet for ether and ERC-20 tokens and even has a feature to discover nearby users interested in buying or selling tokens.

Beyond being a decentralized messenger, Status also functions as a browser for dApps. Think of it like using MetaMask. But instead of being in your browser, the power of the decentralized web is in the palm of your hand. In fact any dApp that runs on MetaMask or Mist will work with Status. They are an open source platform. So anyone can add their dApps to the browser so everyone can have easy access.

Some of the more popular dApps that you can use with Status include:

  • Aragon – they provide entrepreneurship tools for decentralized organizations
  • Ethlance – a decentralized marketplace for hiring and getting hired for crypto
  • Gnosis – forecasting using prediction markets
  • Oasis – a decentralized exchange for ERC20 tokens
  • uPort – an open identity system for the decentralized web

The dApp turns your phone into an Ethereum light node, which means that instead of downloading the entire blockchain to your phone, just an abbreviation of each block is used to access the security and immutability that a blockchain’s distributed ledger provides.

This may sound complicated, but it’s all happening behind the scenes. Status’ mission is to make blockchain user friendly and introduce everyone to what web 3.0 will bring. Instead of a traditional server client protocol that relies on a middleman to handle all of your data, Status’ decentralized servers let you take control of your own data. Users can freely interact with other users without the need for middlemen.

Status recently partnered with OmiseGo to integrate their decentralized exchange and collaborate on research concerning scalability.

The best social apps work because they are popular. No matter how interesting or unique the concept is, if my friends aren’t using the app, then chances are I’m not going to either. Status knows this, and their goal to make a social dApp only works if popularity isn’t going to give the Ethereum network the hug of death like we saw with CryptoKitties.

Status is a social app that lets everyone easily interact with smart contracts. I for one am really excited for their future.