Last month, we found out that Block’s new bitcoin hardware wallet would include a fingerprint sensor. Now, we know what it might look like: a rock.
Block hardware chief Jesse Dorogusker tweeted a photo of prototypes of the company’s new hardware wallet, a flat hexagonal gadget complete with USB-C charging ports. The wallets (or should we say rocks?) allow users to access cryptographic keys stored on the device using a fingerprint sensor, but Block will also offer PIN as an alternative means of authentication.
It’s unclear if the wallet has a name. Jack Dorsey quote-retweeted Dorogusker’s post saying “rockey,” and Dorogusker didn't caption his own tweet. Let’s call it "rockey" for now, OK? (Which might be a portmanteau of "rock" and "key.")
The company formerly known as Square wrote in a blog post last month that the wallet system would include three components. First, it will have a mobile app that allows customers to own and manage bitcoin and find partners to buy, sell or convert fiat to crypto. Second, the wallet has a hardware device (rockey) that would “act as a self-serve recovery kit” for when someone’s mobile wallet is lost. Third, it’ll have tools to help customers recover from losing part of their wallets.
Block will offer more details about what happens for people who lose both their phone and hardware device in the future. “And as part of defining what tools we provide to customers in order to recover their wallet in different scenarios, we'll also be thinking through inheritance, as that is an important part of managing your financial future,” the company wrote.
Dorsey announced in June 2021 Block’s plans to introduce a crypto wallet, dribbling out details over time. We knew Block originally didn’t want a display and that the hardware wallet would have a corresponding mobile app, but we didn’t know what it would actually look like until recently. Lindsey Grossman, Block's head of Product, Marketing and Partnerships for the wallet project, told the Verge that the images are “some prototypes we are experimenting with for the hardware component of the wallet.” So the final product might look quite different.