Decentralized exchanges (DEXs) are cryptocurrency exchanges that operate on a decentralized network, as opposed to centralized exchanges that operate on a centralized server. DEXs allow users to trade cryptocurrencies directly with each other without the need for a trusted intermediary, such as a central exchange.
In a DEX, trades are executed through smart contracts on a blockchain network. These smart contracts act as self-executing code that automatically execute trades when certain conditions are met, such as the price of a cryptocurrency reaching a specific level.
Because DEXs operate on a decentralized network, they offer several advantages over centralized exchanges. For example, they can offer greater security and privacy, as users maintain control over their own funds and personal information. Additionally, DEXs can be more resistant to hacking and other security threats, as there is no central point of failure.
However, DEXs also have some disadvantages, such as lower liquidity and slower transaction times, which can make it more difficult to execute large trades quickly. Additionally, because DEXs are relatively new, they may not offer the same level of trading pairs and features as centralized exchanges.