Saturday, October 14, 2023

An Android-First Crypto Wallet for the Masses?


Very legal, very cool?

After reading this Decrypt article on a new, Android-based crypto wallet that's as easy as downloading it from the Play Store and connecting it to your Google account, I, as an avowed Apple products hater, had to check it out!


So I did a test run of UniPass on Android. It's still a bit clunky with the UI (I ended up charging myself twice for my test deposit), but the onboarding is pretty simple if you are used to Google products.

- Account is linked to my Google account.

- I selected to backup my stuff to my Google Drive.

- I have biometric 2FA selected by default through my Android phone.

- I do NOT know my seed words or phrases. Recovery of my account would consist of verifying myself via Google services as if you were restoring a Google account or Gmail account.

- Onramping is tied to whatever Google account credit cards you have on file. Fairly straightforward.

- You only get a choice of USDC or USDT (Polygon) on the app, though. However, if you access it via browser, you get a multitude of FIAT currencies to use to buy all the popular cryptocurrencies.

- fairly pricey service charge of 7% to onramp USD via Google Pay debit card. I guess you pay for not going through extended KYC through onboarding via an exchange?

- You get three "gasless" exchanges per day. However, they still charged .3% service fee to make a USDT transaction to an external wallet.

VERDICT: While probably cheaper than buying via anything Moonpay-related services or SimpleSwap or ChangeNow, this has potential to ease a LOT of people who aren't concerned with the complexities of true self-custody who just want to get into crypto easier than KYC-bound centralized exchanges.

UPDATE (10/15/23): UPDATE: Okay, this wallet is TRASH so far. When you buy USDT from your Google connected account (easy enough), the UI prompts you to "Continue to buy USDT" - so you think the transaction isn't complete and you end up charging your card twice.

Also, when I bought the USDT, it said it was on the Polygon network (MATIC). And it was - but only represented as USDC (ERC-20).

In trying to get a refund for a wrong exchange sent to the wrong blockchain due to all this confusion, I may be SOL because YOU DON'T HAVE ACCESS TO YOUR PRIVATE KEYS. That "feature" for noobs has quickly turned into a bug for everyone else.

As a decade-long crypto enthusiast, this whole thing ended up confusing ME - and costing me more money than I was willing to spend.

AVOID. Unless and until they take some time to figure their ish out.

No comments:

Post a Comment