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HomeDeFiWhat is DEX in Crypto? A Beginner Guide to Decentralized Exchange

What is DEX in Crypto? A Beginner Guide to Decentralized Exchange

If you have an interest in crypto you might have heard the term DEX commonly known as decentralized exchange. But what is DEX and how decentralized exchange works? In this blog post we will explain the fundamentals of DEX and the reasons for increasing popularity of DEX in the crypto sphere.

What Is DEX in Crypto? Decentralized Exchange

A decentralized exchange serves as the platform that permits users to trade cryptocurrency assets without the involvement of central intermediary like broker, bank or custodian. Users can directly interact with each other through peer to peer network facilitated by smart contract to execute trade.

Smart contract represent self-executing program running on the blockchain, a distributed ledger that record transactions and guarantees the validity and security. The smart contract can enforce trade rules and conditions such as amount, price and time limit without any human intervention or the need for trust.

How Does a DEX work?

While there are various types of DEX available to trade but all these typically share common features and functionalities. A typical decentralized exchange comprises three main components –

What is a DEX in crypto DECENTRALIZED EXCHANGE how it works edited

User interface – Serving as the front-end of the platform this allows users to access the market, view price, place order and manage fund. The user interface can take the form of website, app or browser extension.

Liquidity pool – LP serves as the fund source enabling users to trade on the platform. A liquidity pool consists of a collection of cryptocurrency assets locked in smart contract by liquidity provider (LPs). These providers are users who deposit assets in exchange for rewards or fees. The liquidity pool dictates the availability and price of assets on the platform.

Order book – This record all buy and sell orders on the platform. The order book can be either on-chain or off-chain. An on-chain order book stores and executes orders on the blockchain. It helps to ensure transparency and security at the cost of higher resource usage and time consumption. Conversely an off-chain order book stores and executes orders outside the blockchain leading to improved speed and efficiency at the expense of introducing some risks and trade-offs.

Examples of DEX Platforms

Some examples of popular DEX trading platforms include –

Uniswap – Among the most widely used crypto DEX exchange platform, uniswap operates on the ethereum blockchain utilizing an automated market maker (AMM) model. Uniswap replaces the traditional order book with formula that calculates asset prices based on the supply and demand in liquidity pool. Uniswap facilitates seamless swapping of any ERC-20 token (Standard for Ethereum-based tokens) with minimal fees and slippage (the difference between expected and actual trade prices).

Pancakeswap – Another popular DEX platform, Pancakeswap operates on the Binance Smart Chain (BSC) blockchain. Pancakeswap also employs an AMM model similar to uniswap but with lower fees and faster transactions compared to ethereum. Pancakeswap allows users to swap any BEP-20 token (Standard for BSC-based tokens) and provides additional features such as farming (earning rewards by providing liquidity), staking (locking up tokens to earn interest), lottery participation (buying tickets to win prizes) and NFTs (non-fungible tokens representing unique digital assets).

Sushiswap – SushiSwap is a fork of uniswap which means it copied and modified uniswap code to create a new platform. Sushiswap also employs an AMM model but with some differences and enhancements. These include a governance token (SUSHI) granting users voting rights and share of the fees. A community fund supporting platform development, growth and menu of diverse services such as lending, borrowing, derivatives and NFTs.

Benefits of DEX

The primary advantage of using a DEX crypto is its elimination of third-party involvement leading to reduced costs, risks and delays typically associated with centralized exchanges. Here are some benefits a decentralized exchange can offer –

What is a decentralized excahnge DEX TRADE CRYPTO edited

Low fees – Centralized exchanges often impose fees for depositing, withdrawing, trading and storing cryptocurrency assets. A DEX can minimize or eliminate these fees by cutting out the middleman and empowering users to control their funds.

Security – Centralized exchanges are susceptible to hacking, theft, fraud and censorship. A DEX can enhance security by allowing users to retain control of their private key and wallet which are essential for accessing the cryptocurrency assets. Additionally DEX can prevent any single entity from manipulating or shutting down the market.

Privacy – Centralized exchange often require users to provide personal information and comply with KYC (Know your customer) and AML (Anti-money laundering) regulation. A decentralized exchange can enhance privacy by enabling users to trade anonymously without disclosing the identity or location.


DEX represents novel and innovative approach to trading cryptocurrency assets offering users increased freedom, flexibility and fairness. However DEX is not without challenges and limitations including scalability, usability, regulation and interoperability. As the crypto industry evolves and matures decentralized exchange will likely continue to expand and improve providing users and the wider crypto ecosystem with more opportunities and benefits.

Utkarsh - CoinFTA
Utkarsh - CoinFTA
Meet Utkarsh, your trusted crypto analyst with over 6 years of experience in the dynamic world of cryptocurrency. Since entering the crypto space in 2017, Utkarsh has honed his technical analysis skills and become a seasoned expert in fundamental and technical analysis. With a passion for uncovering market trends and identifying lucrative investment opportunities, Utkarsh delivers insightful analysis to empower traders and investors. From evaluating crypto projects to exploring the possibilities of the DeFi, Metaverse, NFTs, Web3, AI and blockchain gaming, Utkarsh covers the full spectrum of the crypto ecosystem. Join COINFTA and let Utkarsh guide you through the exciting world of crypto with expertise and precision.


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