Coinbase Earn expands to over 100 countries

Coinbase is expanding its Earn service to more than 100 countries, according to a May 17 announcement. The service, which Coinbase acquired as part of an acquihire last year, incentivizes users to learn more about crypto by distributing currencies to those who test decentralized protocols, take quizzes and complete tasks on the platform.

Users can earn a piece of a $100 million crypto asset pool specifically dedicated to reeling in users new to the digital asset space, according to Coinbase. Anyone with a smartphone can access the service, even without a bank account or credit card.

“The rationale behind Coinbase Earn is that as we progress from mining cryptocurrency to buying it to earning it, we open up new opportunities for people to learn about blockchain technology,” the company said in a press release.

Rather than mining or buying cryptocurrencies, Earn presents the option for eligible users to earn Stellar Lumens (XLM), ZCash (ZEC), Basic Attention Token (BAT) and 0x (ZRX). Coinbase said it intends to add others as well. Eligibility includes completing Coinbase’s customer and ID verification and maintaining its maximum account level, which increases a user’s access as they provide more verification. In February, Coinbase added Brave browser’s token, BAT, to the Earn platform. Brave previously used BAT to incentivize users to view ads on its traditionally ad-free browser.

Earn founder Balaji Srinivasan left Coinbase earlier this year after serving as CTO since the acquihire. The Block reported differing visions and a perceived lack of freedom led to Srinivasan's departure. During his time at Coinbase, he worked on consumer products.

Sources familiar with the situation tell The Block Coinbase uses Earn to push certain types of users to engage more with the platform, and that despite Balaji leaving, it will continue to function as a core product.