OKX Web3 Bringing AA Accounts into Reality
OKX Web3 Makes AA Accounts a Reality
AA, short for Account Abstraction, is a term that refers to the abstraction of accounts. For better understanding, in this article, “account” is temporarily likened to a bank account, but the difference is that this account exists on the blockchain network, which is decentralized and borderless. On the other hand, “abstraction” in the Chinese context refers to the process of extracting the essential characteristics of something and discarding non-essential ones, commonly known as simplification.
In a nutshell, AA is the underlying technology that enables a minimalistic and decentralized account system. The AA wallet, commonly mentioned in the industry, serves as the entrance to this system. In general, its upper limit of functionality is programmability and increased intelligence, while its lower limit is reducing the basic threshold for users to enter the Web3 world. For example, it eliminates the need for users to manage mnemonic phrases and supports gas fees for a single currency, simplifying all cumbersome operational processes.
(Note: This is not a technical article, and for the convenience of readers’ understanding, there may be some inaccuracies in terminology.)
Bringing AA into Reality First
The concept of AA first appeared in EIP-2938 proposed by Ethereum core developers in September 2020. In September of the following year, V God improved on EIP-2938 and proposed EIP-4337, which suggested using smart contracts as wallet accounts and designed roles such as bundler and LianGuaiymaster, as well as a set of contract systems including entrypoint. In October 2022, V God updated EIP-4337, and subsequently, many projects started to innovate around the AA concept at the Ethereum developers’ conference in Bogota.
Currently, there are several projects exploring the AA direction, including Argent, Avocado, UniLianGuaiss, Obvious, etc. Apart from basic functions like keyless and gasless, each project has its own strengths. For example, Argent focuses on social recovery, while UniLianGuaiss has made significant progress in the b2c direction of AA. Comparatively, the recently launched OKX AA smart contract wallet excels in user experience.
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On August 2nd, OKX announced the launch of its self-developed AA smart contract wallet, which was officially recognized by ERC4377 on the second day. The official account of ERC4377 tweeted that OKX AA smart contract wallet has a very well-designed user experience at the UX level. Some KOLs also expressed that OKX’s development of the AA ecosystem will bring exponential growth to the market in the future.
In response to this, Jason, the Chief Innovation Officer of OKX, stated that OKX has not fully utilized its advantages in user experience and will have more plans in the future.
“We started paying attention to and conducting in-depth research on AA two years ago. During that time, we accumulated a lot of technical expertise. However, there was no industry standard for the AA ecosystem at that time, only a general direction. Early explorers could only gradually explore, so the development was slow. It wasn’t until last year when the OKX Web3 development team, together with the Ethereum community and the Ethereum Foundation, explored and established the EIP-4337 standard that the direction of AA became clearer.” The person in charge of the AA smart contract wallet at OKX stated in an interview that OKX’s AA wallet has already achieved some basic functionality and will continue to optimize the underlying capabilities of AA and introduce appropriate product innovations.
Currently, the wallet has implemented a complete set of 4337 contract systems, including roles such as bundler and LianGuaiymaster, and supports 7 mainstream public chains (compared to other wallets on the market, it supports the most chains). Currently, users can create AA wallets on 7 popular public chains such as OKTC, Ethereum, and Arbitrum. After the creation is completed, users can use AA to perform one-click swaps on dex, make one-click investments in DeFi, link and use other third-party dapps in the discover page of the Web3 wallet, and support users to directly pay gas with stablecoins USDT/USDC.
The official gas subsidy campaign has attracted many users to experience the creation of AA accounts and interact with them. Some KOLs have even released a series of tutorials.
According to official information, at this stage, users can enjoy 1 free gas reduction per day when transferring or trading, with a maximum reduction of 5U. Zakk revealed that the OKX AA smart contract wallet will also support social recovery, provide wallet mini-program components, realize friend and family gas payment, on-chain copy trading with multi-signature functionality, and advanced on-chain wealth management strategies that can be combined in the future, hoping to enhance user stickiness.
“The beginning is always difficult. The OKX Web3 team has quickly made AA a reality. Next, we will lead the construction of the AA ecosystem and gradually promote the development and prosperity of the ecosystem.” The person in charge said that although the development of the AA ecosystem is still in its early stages, OKX is confident in rallying the industry to create a new generation of Web3 account system and benefit more users worldwide.
Building the AA ecosystem with the industry, creating a new generation of Web3 account system
Chain players who have experience in wallet development know that the existence of AA cannot be separated from EOA. EOA is the underlying architecture that supports the widely used Web3 account system. In the EOA account system, users need to record private keys or mnemonics. Once these two things are lost, all assets in the EOA account will be lost.
Another issue is the ever-present gas problem. When users use EOA accounts to perform any on-chain operations, they need to hold the native token of the chain as gas fees. Veteran players may be accustomed to this process, but for new users, it is a significant obstacle to enter the Web3 world. Understanding gas fees, obtaining gas fees, and the high cost of gas fees have become hurdles for them to explore the new world.
Of course, the more important issue is that EOA accounts do not have contract programmability. Apart from transferring out and receiving native tokens, all functions need to be implemented by calling contracts. Moreover, only one contract can be called at a time, and the combination of functions cannot be achieved. This also limits the space for some developers to innovate in product development.
Although AA has now solved some of the problems with EOA, there are still challenges to creating a better Web3 account system, such as increased costs, low user demand, insufficient ecosystem support, and insufficient product innovation. In the future, OKX will continuously innovate its products to activate users’ motivation to create AA accounts. At the same time, it will maintain deep connections with Ethereum and the Web3 developer community, guide the industry to jointly innovate AA-related products, and guide projects to optimize user experience through AA, and build the AA ecosystem together.
“Product implementation is only 50% of success. How to push more people to accept the AA standard? How to have more dapps access/compatible with the AA standard? How to build the AA ecosystem together with the industry? These are the breakthroughs we need to make.” The person in charge said that the widespread adoption of AA will completely change the interaction mode of Web3, and the AA smart contract wallet will be open source in the near future. The OKX Web3 team hopes to become an anchor in the Builder community, bringing everyone together to promote the construction of the new generation Web3 account system.
Becoming an “Anchor” in the Builder Community
Since the beginning of 2023, the OKX Web3 team has been moving forward rapidly, launching the MPC wallet and actively promoting the infrastructure construction of the Bitcoin ecosystem. Now they have become the leader in the AA track. It seems that the team has endless energy, which is partly due to their technical strength, but more importantly, their confidence in the future.
“OKX has always been committed to solving user problems as much as possible. We are confident that Web3 will explode. Although there are not many incremental users at this stage, we can still maintain a high level of focus. NVIDIA started researching GPU parallel computing 10 years ago, which allowed them to seize the market dividends brought by Bitcoin and AI.” The person in charge of the AA smart contract wallet said that the ultimate vision of OKX Web3 is to build a WAAS (Wallet as a service) for the AA ecosystem, and to jointly construct a Web3 network account system that is more suitable for Internet users. “Make Web3 as user-friendly as Web2.”
If the Bitcoin ecosystem infrastructure construction is the first time the outside world has labeled the OKX Web3 development team as pure “Builders,” the launch of the AA smart contract wallet has made OKX a major force in the new week’s developer community. It must be acknowledged that the developer community and their builder spirit have always been the underlying support for the development of Web3. With the participation of development teams with different backgrounds like OKX Web3, this underlying support is gradually becoming more diverse and open, thus unleashing greater creativity and influence.
In the past, senior tech giants have said that the more successful the Internet becomes, the more difficult it is for people to break through their understanding of Web3 based on blockchain. However, it seems that this curse is about to be broken in 2023, starting from the moment when OKX brings AA into reality.