In a move aimed at democratizing access to self-custody for Bitcoin, Block, Inc. (NYSE: SQ), led by CEO Jack Dorsey, has finally launched the pre-order for its new self-custody wallet, Bitkey, according to a press release sent to Bitcoin Magazine. This new Bitcoin wallet seeks to redefine ownership and security for BTC holders worldwide. Launching today across more than 95 countries spanning six continents, Bitkey aims to empower users by providing easy and secure management of their Bitcoin.
Currently, a vast majority of Bitcoin owners store their holdings on custodial platforms or exchanges, relinquishing control to these intermediaries. Bitkey aims to offer a new custody solution by introducing a multi-faceted approach to self-custody without the complexities associated with traditional hardware wallets.
Bitkey comprises a mobile app, hardware device, and comprehensive recovery tools, catering to both seasoned and novice Bitcoin enthusiasts. The Proto team at Block, led by Thomas Templeton, emphasized the significance of self-custody in fostering a better financial landscape. “The bitcoin decentralized payments network has the potential to create a more inclusive financial system for all, especially those who have traditionally been underserved,” Templeton said. “In the future, we believe customers will demand ownership and self-custody because it brings peace of mind, reduces dependence on any one entity, and puts individuals in control of their own bitcoin. With Bitkey, we are building a safe and easy way for people all around the world with different levels of experiences with bitcoin to take control of their finances on their terms.”
The key feature of Bitkey is its 2-of-3 multi-signature design, eliminating the need for long, cumbersome passwords or seed phrases. This system employs three keys to secure Bitcoin, requiring any two keys to authorize transactions or enact security-related actions.
The wallet distributes two keys directly to users: one housed within the mobile app for convenient transactions and security management, and the other securely stored offline within a hardware device. The hardware key is not only to enhance security but also serves as a means for recovery if a user loses their phone.
Bitkey also incorporates a third key stored on the company’s server, enabling seamless mobile transactions and providing a failsafe option for wallet recovery in case of device loss. It is important to note that Bitkey’s 2-of-3 multi-signature design ensures that the company cannot access or move a user’s Bitcoin without their explicit consent.
Furthermore, Bitkey has struck partnerships with major platforms like Coinbase and Cash App, facilitating easy transfers of Bitcoin from exchanges to the user’s self-custody wallet.
Bitkey is currently available for pre-orders here, with shipments set to commence in early 2024.