This morning HTC announced the launch of its blockchain-enabled smartphone. The new phone was named EXODUS 1 and it is the first model of its kind. But don’t assume you can find it on store shelves among other gadgets.
Genesis Block. Exodus Phone.
This is official early access release to the EXODUS 1. We are inviting a community of developers and enthusiasts to work with us to keep building security. Join us in rebuilding trust together, one phone at a time. Get your early access now! pic.twitter.com/sPcNc7wnzj
— HTC EXODUS (@htcexodus) October 23, 2018
EXODUS 1 is fully focused on blockchain encryption including the ordering of the device: the smartphone can only be bought with Ethereum and Bitcoin. It will cost 0.15 Bitcoin or 4.78 Ethereum.
«It’s been both 10 years since the launch of the first Android phone by HTC and nearly 10 years since the launch of Bitcoin and GenesisBlock. EXODUS 1 will become a foundational element of the crypto internet, says Phil Chen, HTC’s Chief Crypto Officer.
«For blockchain technology to reach its full potential, mobile will need to be the main point of distribution», he emphasises.
Striving to improve the smartphone’s security, Chen wants users to be the only owners of their data, be it browser history, emails, wallets or multimedia on their smartphones.
By design, EXODUS 1 will become a decentralized vault and handheld hardware wallet disguised as any other smartphone. HTC‘s EXODUS 1 has a secure enclave, which is totally separate from the Android operating system. This is where a user’s private keys will be kept. The smartphone comes with a Social Key Recovery mechanism enabling users to regain access to their cryptocurrencies if they lose their keys.
The mobile phone can now be ordered in 34 countries including Great Britain, Singapore, Hong Kong, USA and some European countries. Chinese users will not be able to purchase the smartphone with cryptocurrency trading and exchanges banned in the country.
HTC’s main competitor in the blockchain-enabled smartphone market is Swiss startup SirinLabs, which according to its roadmap, is supposed to issue its blockchain-enabled Finney smartphone priced at $1,000 by the end of the year.