News of the recent MetaQuotes announcement that 3rd party developer MT4i was discarded from operating its ‘interface add-on’ is giving brokers a run for their money. Several large brokers welcomed the new interface that they gave the MT4 platform a much need face lift. In light of the changes, FX & CFD brokers such as Vantage FX, IBFX & Tradenext have all sent notices to their clients informing them of the recent outbreak that will bring changes to their version of the platform.
If the Cypriot bailout, currency wars and overall economic doom and gloom isn’t enough, traders using the modified version of MT4 have been told that they can no longer use the add-on. Tradenext a UK based broker distributed a new installer that was 3rd party plugin free on Monday the 8th, IBFX and Vantage have both sent out notices to their clients of their new installer which will go live on Sunday 14th and Monday 15th of April.
In their notification IBFX states: “Dear IBFX Customer, We are writing to inform you of changes to our MT4 platform that you may soon experience. These changes are the result of actions taken by MetaQuotes, the owner and creator of the MT4 platform.”
MetaQuotes recently made an announcement warning third party developers about mis-using their platform. Jannick Malling CEO of Tradable spoke about the change, he says “They’re (MetaQuotes) making some decisions on how to run and optimize the business I guess. It’s a matter of what you believe in – whether to do things in-house or partner with others. And doing it in-house of course puts pressure on you to do it better than everyone else – especially as more brokers look to differentiate their product offering.”
The MT4i installer gave a range of enhanced functionality including: OCO Orders, Automated Closes, Trailing Stops and advanced alerts, in addition traders could have multiple positions that they could close out using the 1 click.
Rahat Mansoor, an experienced trader from London was intrigued by the multiple position close out feature, he says “this functionality had added value for me as I usually hold more than 50 open positions, most of my trades are correlated so directional swings impact trades in blocks.”
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IBFX was the first broker to launch the advanced functionality in 2011. The platform received positive feedback from traders, particularly high frequency traders and those who use short-term scalping strategies.
MetaQuotes’ domination in the world of trading platforms may have some cause for concern, Tradable; the first open trading platform went live in February 2013. The new platform gives 3rd party developers an ‘open’ platform in which to develop and distribute their creativity. Tradable gives programmers and developers the opportunity to market their products to users of the platform, in the same form of an apps store.
As an “app-based platform” we of course have a fundamentally different philosophy – as we work close with 3rd party developers helping them build awesome apps on tradable. We believe in an open development model because we think there are people out there better at certain things than we are – so it makes sense for us to allow others the freedom to integrate and extend the functionality set of tradable,”adds Jannick.
Vantage FX launched Binary Options via their MT4 platform interface, the form highlight the success of binary options and its plan to add new servers to accommodate the growth. In their notification to clients about the withdrawal of the MT4i interface Vantage FX stated “Binary Options trading also will no longer be accessible from within the MT4 interface.”
The changes could open the market for other platform providers, Denis Borisovsky, CEO of PFSOFT says “in ProTrader platform we provide many professional tools for advanced traders included already, additionally we provide many APIs for platform extension and differentiation.”
MetaQuotes’ move has come under a lot of criticism from professionals in the FX markets, however practices which restrict customisation and modification by third party providers is common in information technology. Krupal Majmudar CEO, Red Paladin, a provider of Forex VPS products and services says” The recent notice to remove 3rd party software from MT4 by MetaQuotes is very similar to Apple or Microsoft stance on their products. They each have to walk a very thin line between making sure that their products are usable with functionality and feature sets that are needed and appreciated by their user base while insuring that they are not being modified in a way that is contrary to their business strategy. It is a very grey area to operate in.”
Several 3rd party developers have been working on the MT4 platform since its inception, with the rise of EA trading the infamous bridge providers have become an important component in the FX trade life-cycle. It will be interesting to see how users adapt their trading behaviour with the reduction of the tolls they have sued to take full advantage of the trading terminal.