Drift Protocol Public Devnet Launch and Learnings

Over the last month, Drift launched devnet in preparation for our mainnet alpha. The Drift devnet was widely successful, receiving extensive amounts of engagement and feedback from our community with 4k+ unique traders, 350k+ trades placed and over $1.6B traded.

Try it out here!

Discord Devnet and Public Launch

Drift Protocol invited its first testers to the Drift devnet on the 20th of September with an initial starting pool of 1,000 alpha testers.

While we received 5,000+ applications to enter our private devnet, we picked our initial testers based on their prior engagement, feedback and participation in our Discord.

To celebrate their participation, early alpha testers received an #alpha-drifters title on our Discord with exclusive access to a testing and feedback channel. If you aren’t a part of our Discord yet, you can find the link to it here!

On September 29th, our devnet went public.

Devnet Stats

We’re proud to announce that as of two weeks of launching devnet, the protocol achieved the following metrics:

  • Cumulative Volume Traded: $1.6B+
  • Total Number of Trades: 350,000+
  • Number of Unique Traders: 4,100+
  • Average Price Impact: .5bps

We’re very excited to see this growth on our mainnet!

Devnet Feedback

We deeply value the constructive feedback we received from our community and actively sought to build and respond live to the feedback from our users.

We received 200+ structured comments about the product and user experience on our Canny board. Users were able to engage by commenting on each feature and upvoting the best feedback.

After working through a week of closed testing, we released devnet publicly on the 28th of September which incorporated the feedback that was raised.

We managed to implement a UI rehaul during the private devnet week to make it much more intuitive for users. Features included:

  • Implemented tutorials for first time connections
  • Implemented a new leverage selector
  • Optimised pre-trade trading tab real estate for important information needed for traders such as estimated leverage ratio and liquidation price
  • Removed trade confirmation tab to reduce trade delays
  • Smoothened loaders
  • More comprehensive error messages
  • Chart optimisations and loading speeds

Here are some of the highest-value features and changes that we made in our devnet based on user feedback:

1. Leverage Selector

Initially, we built a position size slider as a function of max leverage on the platform on the UI. However, there were many users who were confused by the max position size, thinking that it was a function of the current available collateral.

Many users wanted to select leverage as a parameter before position sliders.

We went back to the drawing board and redesigned the trade form so that it allows the user to configure per-trade leverage as a maximum size, and position size slider as a % of the maximum leverage.

2. Creating more Visibility for Margin Balance vs. Deposits

Since the deposit functions are abstracted away from actual trading, we wanted to focus as much screen real estate on trading rather than deposits, so we removed the margin account and deposit statistics with a dropdown button from the top of the page. Putting the deposit next to wallet connection also made the most sense from a user flow perspective.

3. Estimated Liquidation and Pre-Trade Statistics

Thank you @mhonkasalo for great feedback here.
Thank you fusion#3719 for this feedback.

It’s critical for traders to immediately know the exact information going into a trade intuitively.

At a glance, the trader should immediately be aware of how much risk is being taken by the position and make decisions on the fly.

We removed the trade confirmation modal and made estimated liquidation price, leverage ratio and changes in total collateral key factors before users.

Now, with auto-approval for trades on Phantom, making a trade feels as fast as doing so on a centralised exchange.

4. Tutorial for Traders

Tutorial Implementation

After private testing, we implemented a tutorial for users to navigate deposits, withdrawals and trading on Devnet. Initially, users were getting confused by the airdrop and deposit function, as users needed to deposit SOL. We added a button to airdrop SOL to users on devnet.

Shoutouts for Great Feedback

We’d like to thank everyone on Discord, Twitter and Telegram who have actively engaged in helping us and flesh out our platform. Special shoutouts to @juju_mane, experience#2376, jblue#2657, Ps23Gold#9463, @MapleLeafCap, @hedgedhog7 for their great feedback!

The Road to Mainnet

We are looking to host a limited mainnet in approximately two weeks and are looking to field users for Phase 0 of it.

If you are interested in participating as one of the very first users; join our Discord to keep up to date on our first drop!

Get In Touch!

🌐 Visit us at drift.trade 🌐

📩 Email us at hello@drift.trade 📩

💬 Connect with us on Discord 💬

👾 Find us on Twitter — @DriftProtocol 👾

A scalable, decentralised, capital-efficient derivatives exchange built on Solana.