Hands On With the Latest Bitcoin Hardware Wallet: Trezor’s Model T

Hands On With the Latest Bitcoin Hardware Wallet: Trezor’s Model T

A very exciting step forward for all you crypto enthusiasts! Trezor have used their excellent knowledge, expertise, and efforts to build the next generation of secure hardware wallets for cryptocurrencies. Trezor’s Model T has been meticulously manufactured in the Czech Republic providing a valuable piece of kit that; is open source, will offer even greater functionality in the future, and allow you to be your own bank. BTCManager has had the pleasure to get a sneak preview of the Model T, scheduled for regular sale in the second quarter of 2018.

So you have made the great choice of being part of the crypto craze! You have acquired bitcoin, ether or litecoin and are now HODLing. What next? Well, your utmost priority is to protect your wealth and eliminate the chance of being hacked or stolen from. The current status with storing of cryptocurrencies on an exchange or your mobile phone/desktop leaves you more susceptible to being a victim of cyber theft. Trezor’s first offering was shipped to customers in January 2014, with the original model being improved upon with the Model T.

What’s New With the Model T?

Firstly, the packaging of the Model T is more pleasing to the eye, serves as a better repository for the device and has a sleek finish. Instead of having to rip the box open there is a magnet seal which preserves the presentation. While the original came with a seal on the box, the new edition has it over the USB port of the device itself. In our case, it was sealed so tightly that a remainder is still on the device.

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Secondly, the recover seed card is now plastic instead of paper and you now are required to write only 12 words in comparison 24 words previously (you can read more about seeds here). The reason why there are 12 words is that 128 bits of entropy is used; the new recovery process does not leak any bits to the PC and is contained within the device since it comes with a touchscreen. All sensitive operations are only performed through the device, marking an improvement over the Trezor One. Additionally, you are given a magnetic dock so you can place the device wherever you prefer.

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For the device itself, the USB cable needs to be attached firmly, and you’ll hear a click once the connection is in place. The new version can be connected to your mobile phone as well as your desktop, as demonstrated below by WallETH‘s Ligi. The other key feature is that the device is now has a touchscreen allowing you to enter your PIN on the screen. Moreover, when setting your PIN, you can include the number zero.

The device is even waterproof, as demonstrated by Marek ‘Slush’ Palatinus, the CEO of SatoshiLabs:

The setup is similar to the previous model and is user-friendly. Going to trezor.io/start, you can then name your device, set your PIN and download the firmware. You can store the following cryptocurrencies; bitcoin, bitcoin cash, bitcoin gold, ethereum, ethereum classic, dash, litecoin, NEM, and zcash. However, as with Trezor One, you have to use MyEtherWallet to manage Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, and ERC20 tokens. However, ‘Slush’ has indicated that native ETH support (as well as mobile support) will be coming soon.

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The picture above shows we tested the device with bitcoin and it worked well with a fee of two satoshis per byte appearing almost instantly. Some advanced features include using the Trezor as a token for two-factor authentication (2FA), to operate GPG and SSH, and finally connect with third-party wallets and services.

Upcoming Features for the Model T

Trezor users will recall that they can go to the homescreen page and upload their own pictures to customize the screen. Although this feature is not available yet for the Model T, it will be released soon.

Another exciting development would be the integration of Monero which currently does not have any hardware support. There is a proposal to hide all transaction inputs on the hosts to protect the balance value and so that it is only visible when requested on the device to ensure privacy, but more details will be made available in the near future.

Our Verdict

We love Trezor’s fascinating innovation! The style aspect has improved massively and now feels more like a luxury product, especially with a personal note from the CEO and the addition of a touchscreen. The feel of the device itself seems more sturdy, sleek and the most important aspect of all is that everything is open source meaning that developers can work with the company to deliver even more fabulous features and improvements. All operations are performed on the device itself, providing an even higher level of security as compared to its predecessor.

Overall, it’s the best hardware we’ve seen to date. We highly recommend this product and you can pre-order Trezor’s Model T here.

A special thanks to the folks at Trezor, who have kindly sent us the Model T to review.