Many will wonder what’s the essence of a cryptocurrency wallet on a smartphone when it can’t even store Bitcoin, the most popular virtual currency on the market. That’s what we see with the latest smartphone from Samsung, the Galaxy S10 which only supports Ethereum and not Bitcoin.
The Launch of Galaxy S10 Stirred a Wave of Excitement
The news about Samsung’s launch of a smartphone that can store cryptocurrency had stirred a wave of excitement among crypto and tech enthusiasts. The rumoured Blockchain Keystore feature was going to allow ‘unspecified’ cryptocurrencies to be stored. However, the unboxing videos released by those who have gotten ahold of the device says otherwise.
While the smartphone is set for launch on March 8, the early retailers who have been able to purchase the device made some videos. One of such reveals that the S10 only supports Ethereum. It is also uncertain if, with time, compatibility will be provided for other virtual assets that are also based on the ERC20 standard.
A Bone of Contention With the Exclusion of Bitcoin
Now, that may not even be the bone of contention for most people given that currently, Bitcoin is not supported. The latter was not expected given that Bitcoin is the most popular virtual currency by market capitalization and active wallet addresses. But then, Opera also did the same with its Web 3 browser for Android which only supports Ethereum and ERC 20 tokens.
Samsung Galaxy S10 crypto wallet appears to have left out Bitcoin at launch. For now it looks like it's Ethereum-only! 😮https://t.co/j0eFmTphJY
— CRN (@crn_maximizer) March 4, 2019
At this point, some reasons been attributed to these companies’ reluctance to incorporate support for Bitcoin. For starters, one can send tokens to the same Ethereum wallet address. These are tokens other than Ether as longs as they are based on the same network standard. We’ve seen that happen with some initial coin offerings (ICOs) whose tokens were sent to the same wallet address.
More Tokens Running on Ethereum’s Blockchain
In the same vein, a lot of tokens are running on the Ethereum blockchain which may have brought about the preferential treatment. Therefore, it can be seen as killing several birds with one stone since support for Ethereum could also mean support for other tokens shortly. Hopefully, updates which will be rolled out will also enable the wallet to support Bitcoin.
Despite this, it is still impressive to see reputable manufacturers of smartphones design blockchain-based devices. That can be said about the likes of HTC, with its Exodus, Sirin Labs with its Finney, and Electroneum which recently launched its M1 cryptocurrency mining smartphone. It is believed that storing virtual assets on smartphones is safer in comparison with computers.
On the other hand, BTCNN on March 6 reported that Opera intends to launch the Opera Touch for iOS devices. Upon its launch, the web browser will enable iPhones and iPads to store Ethereum. These devices can also access decentralized applications (Dapps) right from the internet browser.