Dual-screen phones are largely seen as a flawed experiment. The best-known effort was the Kyocera Echo, which failed to reach its sales targets in 2011, though there have been attempts to bring the concept back to the market. Sirin Labs now believes that its blockchain-powered Finney may be just the phone to make good use of a second screen.
“We were wondering what prevents cryptocurrencies from hitting the mass market, and we identified two main problems. One is around security. For the first time in history, users need to take care of their own assets, without the ability to approach a central organization like a bank. The other main problem with blockchain is the user experience. We manage to obtain our cryptos, we know where to trade them, we understand the technology behind them, but it’s still something that’s considered complicated for the average user,” said Nimrod May, CMO.
Because of this, Sirin Labs has endeavored to make a phone that was affordable enough for most people interested in cryptocurrencies and supplied it with an operating system that would get rid of some of the complications while still introducing some security.
Part of this plan for security is a dual-screen system, providing a touch-activated second screen that pops up to display sensitive information. By doing this, the phone could prevent typical malicious screen grabber software from getting its hands on this information.
In an earlier interview we had with Paul Puey—the CEO of Edge, a security-focused wallet—we touched upon this issue.
Edge’s mobile wallet makes it a little harder for users to access very sensitive data like private keys. They have to enter their passwords and tap through a pop-up that asks them if they are sure they want to view the master keys to their wallet.
While they can still access this information, the pop-up itself gives the user the “feel” that they are doing something that could have consequences. Puey also said that wallet providers could also show keys in a way that makes it impossible to capture the entire thing in one single screenshot.
Having a second screen might be overkill, but it’s certainly within the spirit of keeping keys secure and ensuring that hackers have a difficult time attempting to siphon funds from people’s wallets. Although Sirin Labs doesn’t have a lot of experience building phones like HTC does, its Finney may be a strong contender to compete with the blockchain-powered HTC Exodus.