I was interested to learn Zangrid has opened a shopping mall region that is Hypergrid enabled. You can reach it using this address: hg.zangrid.ch:8002:HyperShopping
|Arriving at the HyperShopping Mall at Zangrid|
According to Rique Giano, speaking on Google plus, Zangrid now has Gloebits currency installed which their host Zetamex Virtual Service Network is supporting. Gloebits were first mentioned by Maria Korolov in a series of articles here & here in Hypergrid Business last year although one article did say hosting firms were split on adopting the token currency at that time. However, it now appears the Gloebits team headed by Seth Alves who spent seven years developing and administering cutting edge systems for Linden Lab's Second Life Virtual World is testing a new module on Zangrid which permits direct purchases, allows cash out for merchants and offers full online accounting for users. I understand Zangrid merchants are giving full permissions on content bought at the mall so visitors from the Hypergrid who buy virtual goods for personal use can take their purchases away with them when they leave.
I visited the shopping mall at Zangrid and took some pictures but I didn't sign up for Gloebits yet. It's hard to say at the moment if it offers a better or comparable service to Podex Exchange and Kitely but it is to be welcomed of course and I hope more grids consider adopting it to help stimulate trade across the Hypergrid. I like shopping at the Kitely online market and having the goods sent to my grid at Farworldz but I also love to browse in shops at Hypergrid destinations when I travel so I'm sure the experience of in-world shopping will be given a powerful boost with Gloebits and it would be nice to have a universal currency rather than having to buy local currency.
I did wonder if a serious currency trader might bring out a universal coin and it seemed to me that Podex who is well established might be the one to do it. I even dedicated a plot on my Welcome region at Farworldz ready to invite Podex to serve my currency requirements which would have left me free from legal worries and all. So, I am interested in Gloebits but more than likely I will still take Podex who have a good reputation anyway. They've been a virtual coin trader in Second Life since 2007 and serving Opensim grids in recent years. They offer both their own currency and they trade in local currencies so exchanging one local coin for another struck me as quite handy. The only drawback now is they can't exchange Linden dollars any more since Linden Lab imposed a ban on thrid party exchanges effectively cutting off a big part of their business. Podex also deal in Bitcoins which gambling venues like YrGrid offer. However, Gloebits is offered as a universal, or global (as in the name) currency, they hope will be adopted across many grids. Opensim has been growing steadily and the growth is largely Hypergrid traffic so a universal currency might well become big business. Of course, if it becomes big, then I'm sure it may encourage some of the banking and share dealing that Linden Lab allowed in the early years before taking a tougher approach to be sure of satisfying financial regulatory laws in the real world.
None the less, having a universal and easy to use currency has got to be the way to go if the Hypergrid is to continue to grow. There really isn't anything quite like Hypergrid out there yet although High Fidelity is a possible contender for the crown and what with Kitely market possibly selling to HF worlds in the near future then a universal currency like Gloebits can prove itself in Opensim and expand beyond as time goes by.