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Monero’s hardware wallet project is progressing

The fully community-funded Monero hardware wallet project is making significant strides. On November 12th, the team delivered an update showing the current progress.

BTCManager first reported on the joint venture in September 2017, when it was successfully financed with almost 1,000 XMR, and conducted an interview with Schloh, the founder of the project, and Kovri Lead Developer “Anonimal”.

On November 12th, an update and numerous pictures of the board were released, which serves as the starting point for the final product, which was demonstrated by connecting to a mobile phone via USB OTG (On The Go). However, the device may be able to use a source of battery power or even solar power. In an email conversation with the company’s founder, Michael Schloh, BTCManager learned more about the processes and progress.

Prototypes are expected to be tested in late 2017

A “vacation dividend” is expected and, if development continues at the current pace, many prototype versions will be made available for testing. Two versions are likely to come into play; a larger development version, codenamed Breakneck, where the boards for this have already been tested and assembled (see below), and a smaller one for consumers, codenamed Monezor.

Interested parties can register with Taiga, which offers a full overview of the project, to get involved and maybe get an exclusive look at the prototype and a feel for the end product. All risks should be taken by the testers and it is highly recommended not to put any real money into the devices.

The purpose of the test is to improve the product, with participants following a test plan and reporting on their results.

The latest assembly photos

The promising company attracts a strong team

While the proposal was made by Schloh, who has had an impressive career as a scientist, a large team is now being built, with some familiar faces from the Monero crowd. For example, at a meeting of the Monero community, the group said:

“The team now consists of a handful of people, some of whom specialize in FPGA development, legal affairs and documentation, core hardware wallet developers, and most importantly testers.”

When asked about the most important steps completed, Schloh replied: “As for the wallet, we are a strong team of sixteen with many fundamentals covered; Technical editing, project management, quality assurance, law, hardware wallet design, hardware wallet layout and firmware coding. As a concrete step, we procured machines for production, set up communication systems, produced two first-generation models and tested finished wallets with cloned firmware. “

Monero's hardware wallet project is progressing

An early version of the board that tests with Trezor firmware.

When asked what the biggest challenge for the future is, the hardware wallet team said:

“The biggest challenge before the end of the year is to make a few dozen devices and get them into the hands of Monero enthusiasts around the world. We only have a month to complete this and it’s only 50-50 that we reach. Call it a dividend. “

Monero's hardware wallet project is progressing

An example of a design for the circuit

In the Reddit post that updated the Monero community of the progress, DrKokZ asked if there was a specific schedule someone could view if they were “technically illiterate”.

hwalguy replied, “The short version is that the few people who work on it are producing things that are not relevant to sales or e-commerce. That’s good because it reduces the risk of our project failing. The project fails if after six months at least a viable (release grade) hardware wallet design is not available. “

“As soon as a hardware wallet design exists (along with the documentation), a product is only one order away (from a factory store), but there is still a lack of firmware, housing, email support, mod options (cables, Stickers), packaging and other such sales and marketing things. Perhaps this will help you understand the scope of the project we are talking about. You are welcome to contribute sales / marketing / business logistics, if you are so eager, then you can finally answer your questions about delivery estimates yourself 😉 ”

While the Monero custom hardware wallet is constantly evolving, there is obviously still a lot to be done. Even if the fundamentals of the device are still in the works, there is room for many contributors, for example by working on a business plan and strategy.

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