Solana Labs’ Android Smartphone
At a launch event in New York City on June 23, Solana Labs debuted the Saga smartphone, which will serve as both a mobile connecting point to the world of decentralized networks and a storage device for those who want to carry their crypto in their pocket.
The upcoming mobile device will feature unique cryptocurrency wallet functions and aims to stand out from the rest with the Solana Mobile Stack (SMS) software development kit for Web3 programs. SMS is basically a software kit devised to facilitate the development of android apps built within the Solana blockchain. This kit will entail a mobile wallet adapter where users can plug in mobile Solana wallets.
Solana’s device will also include a seed vault — a custody solution that will store private keys, seed phrases, and other delicate data securely within the phone. The android device will additionally integrate Solana Pay support, which could be a game-changer for on-chain mobile payments.
“We live our lives on our mobile devices — except for Web3 because there hasn’t been a mobile-centric approach to private key management,” quipped Solana Labs CEO Anatoly Yakovenko, in a press release. “The Solana Mobile Stack shows a new path forward on Solana that is open source, secure, optimized for web3, and easy to use.”
The company will also roll out a new Solana Web3 dApp store, where users can easily access Web3 applications and Solana-based wallets on their mobile devices at zero fees.
The Saga mobile phone will be fitted with a “secure element” hardware module to enhance the Seed Vault feature and keep customers’ private information guarded against exploits and hacks. Lastly, the SMS will unlock new functionalities such as more access to Solana decentralized finance protocols and the minting of non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
The phone — which boasts a Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor, 6.67 inches OLED display, 12GB RAM, and 512GB of storage — will be released in early 2023 and will retail at approximately $1,000. Those who purchase the phone early will be given a limited-edition NFT to commemorate the launch of the disruptive device.
The Solana Foundation has committed $10 million toward grants for creators of mobile apps on the Solana Mobile Stack software ecosystem.
Boosting Blockchain Adoption
As aforementioned, Solana Labs intends to usher in the blockchain smartphone era after other companies like Swiss-based Sirin Labs tried integrating mobile technology with blockchain and cryptocurrency and fell short.
A long-time Solana proponent and FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried observed during the launch:
“Everything is going mobile. In most countries, most of the access happens through mobile phones. But crypto mobile is behind the times,” he said, remarking how cumbersome accessing dapps on mobile phones is at the moment. “The best solution for this is having the actual wallet built into your phone,” he added.
Simply put, Solana Labs is pursuing what could be the next big thing for smartphone development. Due to the ubiquity of mobile devices, such a move could give crypto adoption a massive boost.