A new smartphone is slated to become the ‘world’s first blockchain phone’ when it starts shipping in November. Called BitVault, the device is made by Embedded Downloads, a company with offices in Ireland and India, with the help of development and manufacturing partner VVDN Technologies, a company also based in India.
According to a statement announcing the device, it will feature encrypted calling and messaging, and will create public and private keys every time it’s used. It also comes with preloaded cryptocurrency wallets including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and EOT; and it will use biometric authentication, though its makers haven’t yet announced the specific modality or modalities to be used.
Some features could prove too secure for some users. Documents can’t be transferred to or from other devices without both devices using a special app enabling BitVault’s private blockchain, and users will need to get their apps through BitVault’s own dedicated app store, which could limit the available options. And web browsing on the device “is severely restricted and controlled with stringent rules to ensure the integrity of the environment,” according to Embedded Downloads.
Still, there may be a niche of users who are happy to make tradeoffs in ease of use for the kind of security that BitVault offers, and that appears to be what Embedded Downloads and VVDN Technologies are banking on.