KeepKey is not only certified as secure and reliable but it is also sturdy, sleek and looks modern. You won’t hear a lot about this device from mainstream media but that doesn’t mean performance is sub-par. Pound to pound, it looks like a hybrid between Trezor and Ledger and aesthetically, it beats Trezor hands down. Not only is KeepKey’s screen stylish, it support a couple of liquid cryptocurrencies like NameCoin, DogeCoin and Litecoin besides Ethereum and Bitcoin.
Keepkey wallet overview
We all know how secure hardware wallets are said to be. Even though security is mainly upon us and how we interact online, the bottom line for all hardware wallets irrespective of the brand is security. That cannot be compromised.
It was in the news recently that Bitstamp were onboarding more than 100K customers every month and coincidentally, CoinBase is also singing the same tune. What does this tell us? Other than the pump that we expect to see in 2018 and beyond as more customers are on boarded, it also means the demand for secure and hardware wallets like KeepKey will continue to grow. By the way, that’s not rocket science. It’s simple supply-demand economics.
However, we need devices that are representative of who we are. We need digitized devices that look and smells post Satoshi while keeping the bottom line intact. Only one wallet gladly presents them to us: KeepKey.
Users ratings sampled from Amazon stands at 4.2/5 stars and it is not hard to see why. Like other cold storage devices, it looks like a normal USB with a large and glossy display.
Novice users won’t have a hard time using it too after all, KeepKey is user friendly and cheap. Costs $99 from Amazon.
Security wise, each and every other transaction made must be approved from the device itself. It also has a hardware button for confirming transactions.
Inside the Box
What is inside the box?
It is very easy to get the device within a day or two, you can simply order from Amazon. Once your package is delivered, here is what you will find inside the box after breaking the seal:
- KeepKey hardware wallet with an impressive 3.2” OLED screen
- A pouch
- A USB cable
- A User Manual
- Recovery sheet
The first thing you notice, and this speaks volumes to me, is the packaging. The hardware is cushioned and the USB cable is even cotton wrapped. Can you believe that? That’s the kind of detail and care I admire the most. KeepKey has that.
Setting up your keepkey
Unwrap the wallet and plug it to your computer.
Initializing the wallet is straight forward. Simply follow their short and simple instructions.
The first thing you will do is download and install their chrome wallet extension from their official website at www.keepkey.com.
After that, you will also need to download and install their Chrome extension from www.keepkeyproxy.com and when done, rename your device from the KeepKey Icon at the right hand side of the computer.
Okay, it’s painless but I wonder why KeepKey didn’t combine these installation. Security concerns? I don’t know.
After this installation, you will be asked to initialize your KeepKey.
When you are through with those easy steps, it’s time to set up your 4-digit PIN code.
KeepKey will work in most computer OS and after setting up your PIN code, you will be asked to jot down your master seed phrase which is automatically generated.
There is a recovery sheet meant for that. Write it down because it is highly recommended to keep these phrases off grid. Just to let you know, even though the default number of phrases is 12, you can use 18 or 24 phrases if you aren’t comfortable with 12.
Word of caution: The longer the recovery phrase, chances of messing up is high. We recommend sticking with the 12 word phrase.
Finish up backing up your recovery phrase and you are good to go. Simply hard press KeepKey’s button for say 3 seconds to initialize and the device is ready for use.
Interface and Transacting using KeepKey
You will quickly realize that the interface is intuitive and look awesome with that all black background. Basic functions like transacting or adding accounts is straight forward. Just as a remainder, if you want to transact-send or receive coins, everything must be sanctioned from the device.
This human interaction through the hardware button makes it impossible for remote hackers to access your coins. The wide OLED screen helps. Plus, with ShapeShift you can now convert from one coin to another straight from your device without going through exchanges.
If you want to send coins for example, the wallet presents three options depending on the speed at which your coins can be confirmed. Transactions can be confirmed in 10, 20 or 60 minutes. The longer the wait time, the lower the fees. Once you choose the channel, you will have to key in your PIN code not from the keyboard but using a mouse on a randomized number pad and confirm the transaction by pressing the hardware button on your KeepKey.
KeepKey PIN Code
Private and safe
Let’s start by what you see when you receive your package. As we all know, KeepKey must keep up with their reputation. Your device’s box has a KeepKey seal securing the contents. If it is broken, it’s hard to duplicate the seal outside their factory so you will immediately know if your device is tampered with.
First, l will assume you already know the benefits of decentralization and keeping source codes open. Nothing is decentralized and if there are schemes by hackers for example to siphon user private keys when the link to the internet, the KeepKey community can raise the alarm and the backdoor closed.
Assume you lost your device, the only way unauthorized people can get to know your wallet password is first through the 4 digit PIN code. Unless you were careless with your PIN code, they won’t access your wealth. If the device get damaged or lost, use your master seed to recover your coins from KeepKey or any wallet supporting BIP 39 and 44.
Additionally, as I have mentioned above, all transactions-sending coins for example, must be confirmed from the device. Nothing is remote, you must press the button for approval otherwise nothing happens. This client base approval is important as your coins become hacker proof. Besides this, key generation is done from the device.
Assume you are not a tech savvy and it happens that an unwanted firmware is running your KeepKey device-remember it is open source, what would KeepKey do? Well, to notify you of intruders, it will quickly and automatically generate a message warning you. Then KeepKey is made from “Bare Metal”, no batteries involved and there is no way of loading other ROM on your wallet. KeepKey is also a multi-signature wallet which is offline unless needed for coin transfer. Your coin’s private keys are protected within KeepKey’s chipset, which means that chances of hackers accessing your coins and exporting keys are next to zero.
Coins Supported by Keepkey
At the moment KeepKey supports the following cryptocurrencies:
Bitcoin, Ethereum, Eitecoin, Dogecoin, Dash and Namecoin
Plans are underway to add more coins including ERC20 tokens
- Very easy to use
- Has ShapeShift
- Malware proof. You can set it even on a compromised computer.
- The 3.2” screen is perfect and large enough for transactions. Plus it is protected by a metallic cover.
- It is fully open source
- Security is assured
- Simple instructions during set up
- Large screen which makes it look bulky.
- Before gearing up for use, a two-step installation process is required.
- You only have to use chrome extension during set up
Final verdict for Keepkey
KeepKey is a sleek gadget and whoever thought of introducing such a large OLED screen should receive a thank you pat. Setting up the gadget is easy and if your follow their simple instructions you can be through in less than 10 minutes. Let’s not forget about their impressive security features and the array of coins they support. If you want a combination of style and security, KeepKey is for you.