- 1 What Are Hardware Wallets?
- 2 Why Choose A Hardware Wallet?
- 3 Best Solana Hardware Wallet
- 3.1 1). Ledger Wallets
- 3.2 2). D’CENT
- 3.3 3). Prokey
- 3.4 Conclusion
Solana hardware wallets
Solana as described by its creators is the fastest blockchain in the world with the fastest-growing ecosystem in crypto. It was built by developers at Solana Labs and maintained by the Geneva-based Solana foundation.
Solana solves the scalability problem by suggesting that each node requires an internal clock.
Instead of nodes competing to solve complex hashing puzzles to confirm transactions (as seen in Bitcoin), Solana achieves timing sequence by implementing a proof-of-history protocol that encodes the passage of time into the blockchain. Using this structure, Solana confirms 50,000 transactions per second.
Considering Solana’s gain of over 13,000% in 2021, it is important to be cautious when choosing a wallet to store your SOL assets.
If you prioritize the security of your cryptocurrencies, then hardware wallets are the best options.
If you are new to crypto, check out our beginners guide to cryptocurrency.
What Are Hardware Wallets?
One of the ways to keep your cryptocurrencies secure is to ensure you keep your private keys in a safe place. Hardware wallets allow you to keep your private keys in a physical device, isolated from the internet. This means that your wallet is less prone to attacks.
For hardware wallets like Ledger Nano S, the wallet is connected via a USB port to a computer. The wallet is disconnected from the computer (with the private keys stored safely offline) after the transaction has been completed (and signed using the private key from the hardware wallet). For the Trezor wallet, the transactions are signed offline.
Why Choose A Hardware Wallet?
The reason why it is not advisable to keep cryptocurrencies on exchanges is that you don’t have control over your wallet. You’ve probably heard them say “Not your keys, not your coins,” right? Also, if the exchange is compromised or hacked, you also risk losing your coins.
Hardware wallets don’t just give full custody of the private keys (and crypto assets), they also ensure that these keys are isolated offline, reducing the chances of losing your investment through hacks.
Some hardware wallets also provide a 12-24 word phrase (that is called seed phrase) during installation. This phrase can be used to recover your wallet cases where the wallet or pins are misplaced. And of course, to whom much power is given, more responsibility is required. It’s your responsibility to ensure you don’t misplace your key phrase as your phrase and your private keys are the only ways to recover your tokens.
Best Solana Hardware Wallet
1). Ledger Wallets
According to Solana’s official website, Ledger hardware wallets provide a great blend of security and convenience. They retain the convenience of a file system wallet (where private keys are stored in a file and backup is done by copying the file) and the security of a hardware (cold storage) wallet.
Solana is supported on the 2 types of Ledger wallets: Ledger Nano S (introduced in 2016 and retailing at $59) and Ledger Nano X (introduced in 2019 and retailing at $119).
The Ledger Nano S Technology
Introduced in 2016 by Ledger, a Paris-based company with offices in San Francisco, California; Ledger Nano S is a hardware wallet that resembles a USB thumb drive.
Ledger Nano S has an inbuilt display screen that plays a crucial role in payment confirmation, pin setup, and recovery of the wallet.
During a payment transaction, the screen displays the amount transacted and the public address it is being sent to for confirmation.
There are 2 buttons on the Ledger Nano S. To confirm a transaction, both buttons have to be pressed simultaneously. This implies that even if a hacker attacks a wallet, they can’t make payment confirmations.
The buttons are also used when setting up the 4 digit pin code, in the recovery process, and in activating the applications on the Ledger Manager app.
Apart from the buttons, Nano S requires users to create a 4 digit pin code (and confirm each number selected by pressing both buttons simultaneously). The pin is required to access the wallet to perform transactions. In cases where the pin is typed wrongly 3 times, Nano S wipes all data contained in the wallet.
Nano S also protects users against malware infections by carrying out its initialization and restoration process in a closed and secured environment (requiring 2-factor authentication or a security card).
Ledger Nano S provides a 24-word recovery phrase upon installation that is used to recover the crypto assets attached to the wallet in cases where the wallet is misplaced or damaged.
It also provides a recovery sheet in its delivery box where users can write the 24-word recovery phrase.
The Ledger wallet integrates well with Phantom and Solflare wallets. They allow users to store Solana assets, SOL coins, and NFTs.
The Ledger Nano X Technology
The Ledger Nano X is an upgrade of Ledger Nano S, introduced in 2019. The idea behind this innovation is the simplicity in which it carries transactions.
Ledger Nano X has a wider inbuilt display screen than Ledger Nano S. This helps the user have a clearer view during transaction confirmation, pin set up, and recovery of the wallet.
Ledger Nano X is compatible with both desktop devices (for example Linux) and mobile devices (Android and iOS). It enables connection via Bluetooth.
Backup and Security:
Like the Nano S, the Ledger Nano X provides a 24-word recovery phrase to aid back up. It requires users to confirm this phrase in order, immediately after providing them during setup. It also requires a 4 pin code and has 1 button on its body.
Ledger Nano X and Phantom
Phantom is a crypto wallet and web extension with over 1.2 million active users. It was built to help Solana investors interact with decentralized finance (DeFi) applications on the Solana network.
By integrating Ledger Nano X with phantom wallet, users not only get to store their private key in an offline device but also gain access to DeFi services.
Users can borrow, lend, trade, and earn interest on SOL assets as well as send, receive, collect, and swap SOL tokens on the Solana blockchain. Integration with Phantom wallet also enables Solana Ledger wallet users to buy, sell, and create NFTs.
As a means to increase the ease of interaction with the Solana blockchain, Phantom wallet that originally supports only desktop devices has started beta testing to enable DeFi investors to use mobile devices to connect.
Ledger Nano X and Solflare
Solflare is a multiplatform wallet (a browser extension in Chrome and Firefox and a web wallet available on both desktop and mobile devices) built specifically for Solana. It supports sending, receiving, and swapping native SOL coins, SPL tokens, and staking of Solana assets.
By integrating Ledger Nano X and Solflare, users gain access to a staking account (provided by Solflare), DeFi protocol, and interactions with NFTs. Non-traders can also earn interest on their SOL assets by pooling their assets to fund managers.
1). It is mobile-friendly:
Ledger Nano X encourages crypto investors to track and store their crypto investments with ease through their mobile devices.
2). It supports multi currencies:
Alongside Solana, Ledger wallet supports over 26 coins and 1500 tokens. This gives users the option of swapping between multi-currencies.
3). Its physical structure protects against damage. It also provides a 24-word recovery phrase to aid backup.
4). Integrated with Phantom or Solflare, Ledger wallets provide access to staking options, Defi protocol, Dapps, and NFTs.
5). It creates a safe environment for cryptocurrencies as their private keys are stored offline, making them less prone to hacks.
1). It is quite expensive compared to mobile wallets.
D’CENT is a hardware wallet developed in South Korea in 2018 and built for mobile devices (Android and iOS devices). It works with the D’CENT app using an encrypted Bluetooth connection or a USB cable.
D’CENT wallet has a 1.1 inch (128 × 128 pixel) OLED display screen, a built-in 585 mAH durable battery, with 4 buttons that encircle the fingerprint authentication sensor.
D’cent large screen allows users to check balances without connecting to a mobile device. To perform transactions and manage the wallet, users are required to download the D’cent application on their mobile device.
D’cent is the first hardware wallet that features biometric security. It requires a fingerprint scan to unlock the wallet. D’cent is also protected by EAL5+ (the same security chip that secures other hardware wallets like Ledger Nano X, debit, and credit cards).
To top-up its security, D’cent requires users to choose a 4-digit pin code during setup.
Setting up the D’cent wallet can be done offline. To begin, turn on the D’cent wallet by holding the power button for 3 seconds. Select your preferred language (supported languages are English, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, and Spanish) and confirm your selection by pressing the OK button.
Next, select ‘create wallet’, choose a 4-8 digit pin code, and scan your fingers using the fingerprint sensor at the center. You would be provided a 24-word recovery phrase that you are required to write down (preferably on the recovery sheet supplied with its delivery box).
In cases where the D’cent wallet is damaged or misplaced, the crypto assets stored in the wallet can be recovered by providing the 24-word recovery phrase given during setup.
1). D’cent has an in-built Dapp browser that helps users access decentralized applications.
2). It is the first hardware wallet to feature a biometric fingerprint scanner adding to its security layer.
3). Set up can be done offline.
4). It has a durable battery.
1). It supports fewer cryptocurrencies compared to other hardware wallets.
Prokey is a hardware wallet developed in 2018 in Malaysia. It uses a USB Type Micro-B to connect to internet-enabled devices. It is compatible with Windows, Linux, MacOS, and Android devices.
Prokey has a large screen with 4 buttons to help the navigation of the information on the screen.
Prokey does not require users to download an extra application or software to set up the wallet or perform transactions. All transaction processes and installations can be performed from its web interface. It is connected to both desktop and mobile devices (Android) via a USB cable.
USDT is a stable cryptocurrency as it is backed by the US Dollar. Prokey comes with support for USDT on Ethereum and Omni protocol blockchain. Users can store and swap USDT.
According to their return policy, Prokey keeps users’ information for only 60 days to provide after-sale services in cases of device malfunction. After 60 days, all customers’ information is deleted to protect users from attacks.
Prokey provides a 24-word recovery phrase during installation that helps backup in cases where the wallet is misplaced or damaged. It also requires users to set up a 4-6 digit pin code.
1). It is priced at $59. This is cheaper than most hardware wallets.
2). It provides a 24-word recovery phrase to aid backup.
3). It protects against supply chain attacks by ensuring that firmware is installed by users only after purchase.
1). It has no integrated battery.
2). It does not offer additional services besides storing, sending, and receiving cryptocurrencies.
Hardware wallets provide the best protection against hacks. Most of them are beginner-friendly and integrate well with mobile wallets. If you are looking for more options, check out our article on top 10 Solana wallets.
Emmanuella Elenbalu is the Content Manager at Coinsem. She is passionate about cryptocurrency, investment, and learning new things.