Solana is one of the most popular blockchains today. It gained prominence due to its scalable infrastructure and fast transaction speeds. Last week, Solana Mobile – a subsidiary of Solana Labs – announced a flagship android phone called “Saga”. Let’s see what is so special about this phone, and why it’s good news for the crypto world.
What Makes Saga Special?
The Solana Saga isn’t just another android phone. It has unique functionalities that sets it apart from our phones. It is a web3-enabled device that features tight integration with the Solana blockchain. This makes it easy for you to transact in digital assets like tokens and NFTs, while also keeping you secure.
Saga was unveiled at an event in New York City on June 23rd. This also included the reveal of the Solana Mobile Stack (SMS), a software kit that enables developers to create native mobile apps, wallets and games on Solana. It includes a decentralised app store and systems for private key management. The software development kit is out now, while the phone can be expected in early 2023.
Anatoly Yakovenko, the co-founder of Solana, has worked with Qualcomm as an engineer. This could mean that improving web3 integration on mobiles has been in the works for years. “Almost 7 billion people use smartphones around the world and more than 100 million people hold digital assets – and both of those numbers will continue to grow,” he said.
Anatoly believes that the key to unlocking the potential of crypto is to bring it into everyone’s hands. Saga bridges this gap by allowing easy access to the world of crypto and web3. It will provide greater adoption and understanding of crypto.
Saga has been designed in partnership with OSOM, a leading Android manufacturer. Jason Keats, the founder of OSOM was previously the head of R&D at Essential, a startup that made its own phone. He said, “The world needs novel hardware to embrace the future that is web3.” He also thinks that creating a brand-new ecosystem, without being burdened by legacy software is beneficial for the project.
Specifications and Pre-Orders
The web3 mobile features the latest Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor, along with 12 GB RAM, 512 GB storage and a 6.67” OLED screen. The security features of the Snapdragon platform also enable Solana to create a “Seed Vault”. This vault is capable of storing seed phrases and private keys separated from applications, yet still capable of interacting with them.
If the Solana Saga has you interested, you can join the waitlist by paying the required deposit of $100. This is fully refundable and will be applied to the final price of the phone, estimated to be $1,000. Customers who pre-order the device will receive exclusive NFTs and the ability to influence the SMS platform.
The Future for Solana Mobile
The Solana Mobile Stack is an open-source platform that aims for widespread adoption. However, this would require major smartphone makers to put the time and effort into integrating it with their devices.
This seems more likely on android devices, given the more open nature of the platform. Android has been adopted and modified by several different phone makers to their liking. Doubts remain about its extension to iPhones and iOS. Since Apple keeps iOS locked down, it would need full ecosystem support from them to achieve a seamless experience.
Yakovenko thinks it is critical that major brands adopt this platform. Only widespread integration can expose a larger audience to crypto. If these companies believe crypto is important enough, then billions of users can have the opportunity for self-custody.
Solana Mobile’s first venture into hardware sets it apart from the smartphone industry. With its impressive specs and unique integration, it has the potential to disrupt the market. However, the SMS platform needs to be extensively adopted by other brands. Only then can the longevity of this ecosystem be guaranteed.