Online wallets have always been an intriguing development for cryptocurrency users. Although not all of the services give users access to private keys, they add convenience. In the Ethereum world, there are very few online wallets available right now. But is there a need for more web wallets to lower the entry barrier?
Cryptocurrency Web Wallets Become More Popular
Compared to Bitcoin, many people think Ethereum is a lot easier to set up. When using traditional wallet software, however, the process is nearly identical. One main difference is how much less time it takes to download the Ethereum blockchain. In most cases, Bitcoin users spend several hours – or even days – to fully sync with the network. A very painstaking process for sure.
This has caused web wallets to become a hot commodity over the past few years. All users need to do is register an account, and their wallet is ready to use. On the flipside, there is not always control over the private key, which is a significant setback. Thankfully, more and more online wallets let users export the private keys these days.
But there is more than meets the eye when it comes to web wallets. Particularly in the Ethereum space, they seem to share all functionality a regular desktop wallet has to offer. Using the Ethereum network effectively is the primary objective for these services. Sending and receiving funds is important, but there is a growing demand for feature-rich wallets as well.
This creates competition among online wallets, both in the Ethereum and Bitcoin space. One of the most important features these days is the option to store offline keys onto a computer. Doing so provides additional security in case something would happen to the web wallet provider. Moreover, while it may be less convenient to import a private key into a different wallet, security should matter more than anything to cryptocurrency
Furthermore, web wallets offer plenty of localisation support. Cryptocurrency is a multilingual ecosystem, and people prefer to use services in their own language. Most of the regular wallet clients do the same, although their language pack is often limited to “traditional” languages. MyEtherWallet is leading the charge in this regard, as they currently support a dozen different languages.
The future’s looking bright for both Bitcoin and Ethereum. Both currencies have a vibrant community, and people are more than willing to help one another. Web wallets are becoming a new competitive space, and it will be interesting to see which advancements are made over the coming years.
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