Last Updated: 11 July 2022
Fear is a bad advisor, especially for traders, but not when it comes to the security of your cryptocurrency. This year has been plagued by scams, poorly written decentralised protocols, and central exchanges that do not have their affairs in order. Not surprisingly, manufacturers of hardware wallets are worried about their sales figures.
What is a hardware wallet?
A hardware wallet is a physical device that allows you to manage your crypto currency in a secure way. With a hardware wallet you can receive, send and manage cryptocurrencies. Important to know is that these physical devices don’t literally store crypto but keep access to your crypto safe and offline. This way, no hacker can access your bitcoin without being in possession of your hardware wallet and its PIN.
There are several manufacturers of hardware wallets. For example, the popular Nano series is made by Ledger from France and the Trezor series by the Czech company SatoshiLabs.
This bear market is different
Pascal Gauthier, CEO of hardware wallet crypto company, Ledger, tells Cointelegraph that the company’s sales fell by around 90% during the crypto winter of 2018, but that is not the case this year:
“Every quarter, we have as much revenue as all of 2020, which was a very good year for Ledger. Right now, we are still going up year-on-year, which tells us that this bear market is different. It’s not a real bear market but rather a bear market for centralised value propositions.”
Fear is a good advisor
By centralised value propositions, Gauthier is referring to third parties such as exchanges that manage coins. For example, Ledger sold most of its wallets after US crypto exchange Coinbase shared its quarterly results, which were far from rosy. This suggests that users are afraid of bankruptcy and would rather withdraw their coins from Coinbase and manage them themselves with a hardware wallet.
This is a good development anyway, because the whole idea of crypto is that you are the boss of your own coins and not that you hand this over to a third party.
“After the publication of this report, we made $2 million a day, but it was just a highlight because nothing bad happened to Coinbase. People just realised that their crypto was not safe,” Gauthier said.
That fear was fed by Brian Armstrong, Coinbase’s CEO, when he tweeted the following.
1/ There is some noise about a disclosure we made in our 10Q today about how we hold crypto assets. Tl;dr: Your funds are safe at Coinbase, just as they’ve always been.
— Brian Armstrong – barmstrong.eth (@brian_armstrong) May 11, 2022
Sales rise where others seem to fail
Gauthier also observed this behaviour when lending protocol, Celsius, froze recordings, and users could not access their coins. Even when (as yet false) rumours circulated that BlockFi would do the same, Ledger saw a growth in their sales figures.
“People rushed to our products to move money to a safe place. We now see that sales have been increasing for six weeks in a row,” says Gauthier.
Buy bitcoin directly from Ledger Live
Bitcoiners of the first hour will always recommend that you store your crypto via a hardware wallet. Since the end of 2021, it has therefore been possible to buy bitcoin and other cryptos directly from BTC Direct via a hardware wallet from Ledger. You connect your Nano to your desktop or phone, and then when you want to buy crypto, you choose Discovery and then BTC Direct.
To make it even easier, you can just pay with your credit card or iDEAL. The BTC Direct app in Ledger Live allows Ledger users to buy BTC, ETH, USDT, LTC, XRP, BCH and USDC, with more coins to be added in the future.
An additional advantage of buying crypto in this way is that when you connect your wallet to your computer or phone, you don’t have to log in to BTC Direct again, if you have already done so.
Safe handling of your wallet
Your wallet is automatically connected, which means you don’t have to add your receipt address manually. This is necessary, for example, if you want to send your crypto from a crypto exchange (like Coinbase) to your own wallet. This is an important security feature that ensures you can’t make mistakes, and hackers can’t change your wallet address if you copy and paste it.