Pretty much everyone owns a smartphone nowadays. I mean, how else would we manage to avoid eye contact with strangers on public transport, or organize regrettable dates? And yet, blockchain and smartphones are strangers to one another.
Maybe it’s a match that needs to happen. After all, blockchain is famed for its ability to create secure systems, and mobiles are currently vulnerable to a wide range of attacks.
What’s more, as cryptocurrency becomes more widely adopted people are using their phones to manage their wallets. This makes sense — it’s way more convenient than waiting to sit down at a computer like some kind of primitive caveman —but phones are also riddled with security issues.
So what’s the answer? Maybe some kind of new phone that incorporates blockchain technology and unique security measures that allow users to handle their cryptocurrency in safety?
Well, there could be something like that on the horizon.
The new blockchain phone
The phone claims to be the only one that is secure enough to handle cryptocurrency safely, and just for good measure it also comes with 256GB of internal memory and a 16 megapixel camera.
The price tag of $1,000 isn’t exactly flip-phone money, but it isn’t astronomical either, compared with leading smartphones. It’s definitely a LOT cheaper than Sirin’s previous model, the Solarin, which will set you back the tidy sum of $16,000.
The Solarin was marketed as a ‘luxury phone’, the Rolls Royce of handheld gadgets, and the main selling point was the fortress-like security built into it.
Anyway, maybe the market for obscenely expensive handheld tech wasn’t quite enough for Sirin, because it looks like they’ve decided to change direction. They claim to have shifted their focus from luxury to mass-market electronics, and the Finney is their starting point.
The Finney is kitted out with a range of interesting security features, like an intrusion prevention system based on behaviour, and a blockchain-based anti-tampering mechanism. These certainly sound formidable, if nothing else.
So these are the features, but what exactly is a “blockchain-based smartphone”? Well, the phone comes pre-loaded with Status, an Ethereum-based client that allows users of the phone to use Finney and Status tokens.
Status is an open-source platform that allows users to interact with Ethereum dApps. This means they can do things like access cryptocurrency and execute smart contracts.
What does it mean for phones? What does it mean for blockchain?
At this point, it’s tough to say exactly what Finney will do to the smartphone industry or blockchain. On the plus side, the token sale was successful, raising the target of $100 million, so there’s clearly a decent level of interest in the technology.
That said, the price tag IS pretty high, and expecting the Finney to topple, or even challenge, smartphone giants like Apple and Samsung seems…ambitious, to say the least.
Maybe the best possible outcome of this is that large phone companies will start to adopt similar technologies as blockchain and cryptocurrency become more widespread. As more people join the ranks of crypto traders, there’s sure to be some kind of demand for smartphones that can safely support that kind of activity.
The security aspect of the Finney is definitely intriguing in this sense, and the idea of a phone that can support dApps is one that could well pick up traction as blockchain-based applications become more widely used.
For now, it seems best to hold off on any kind of definite verdict until the Finney has been properly rolled out and more information is available on how these features actually work and benefit the user.
Plus, a lot of the Finney’s features — like sharing resources in exchange for tokens — kind of rely on a wide network of users interacting with one another. Until the smartphone market adopts blockchain en masse (or everyone buys a Finney) this won’t be a possibility and many of the features will be next to useless.
Still, this could be a step in the right direction and might even push the smartphone industry to start taking blockchain more seriously.
So, what do you think? The next big thing in the world of telecoms, or just a novelty toy for people with more money than sense? Let us know in the comments!