Why Trust Wallet’s Founder Thinks New Key Management and NFTs Are the Future
Learn about new types of key management and NFTs from Viktor Radchenko, Trust Wallet’s Founder and CEO.
Adrian Sandiford interviewed Trust Wallet Founder and CEO, Viktor Radchenko, to provide you with insight into his views on key management and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
What’s the one big thing you want to work on or improve for crypto in general?
In terms of my overall vision, I think we’re still lacking a good key management system in crypto. The recovery phrase is cool, it works, and it’s compatible with other wallets, but I don’t think that’s the way people are going to want it to work in the next couple of years.
We definitely need to make crypto more accessible in terms of being a self-sovereign system, where you control your keys, and no one else. But how do you make sure you don’t forget? That’s the main problem we’re currently facing in the whole crypto ecosystem. Because the best products out there, they’re either complicated to use, or you need some kind of entry point.
Take Uniswap, for example. I think Uniswap is great. It’s very simple and all of that. But in order to use it you need to set it up with MetaMask, right? That’s super complicated. So we still have that barrier in front of things that’s going to make it complicated for people. If we can solve the barrier in front then we can make other products in that ecosystem look really nice. So in this case, it’s smooth, you already have the wallet, and you don’t need to worry about anything else.
Key management is something that we’re currently exploring. It’s not something that’s been done particularly well by anyone yet, but we’re trying to see how we can utilize the knowledge that we’ve learned in the past three years, and build something that will work for our users. We have our phones, and our phones are already our extended brains, which store so much valuable information, so how can we utilize that to have a secure copy of your wallet that no one can take from you? That’s where the tricky part is. It’s really hard to do.
Why are you particularly interested in solving the problem of key management?
Because I think the seed phrase needs to be abstracted away. I don’t think that’s something that people want to worry about if possible. Like, oh, you need to write it down, where am I going to store it, it’s just too much complexity. And you still need to use your physical world if you want to store it securely because it’s not always secure to store it online.
So we need to find a way, a balance, where it’s encrypted, but it’s also safe to use, and, at the same time, no one can easily steal it from you. So we need to think about those things. And then how do we make it?
Maybe there are better ways to do it, like social recovery, smart contract wallets, those kinds of things. Maybe there’s a way to find a balance between all of those that will be compatible across all the blockchains and will work smoothly for the user.
If we manage it then it will give us more exposure to building other products on top, because this is the biggest barrier I see in crypto, for people to come and create their own self-custodial wallet.
Your wallet is not just the money you store — it’s your identity. You could be signing documents with it, you could be owning NFTs, many other things. It’s more than a digital asset.
What else are you thinking about beyond key management?
Another thing I’d mention in terms of the vision would be NFTs. I think that’s the next step.
OpenSea is a good way to get started where you can see lots of different collectibles out there in the market. And yeah, NFTs could be like art, insurance, coupons, some scarcity assets that you can use. They represent specific companies, celebrities, and so on. It’s going to be an interesting ocean of different ideas. And so we have to focus on accessibility and simplicity.
NFTs are a part of what we’re trying to make simpler for people. So owning different assets, non-fungible tokens, which is super exciting. They’re just really fun to own, and usually represent the history behind it — people who created those NFTs, they could be used as art, or as a game. There are just tons of possibilities that are going to come up from it. And that’s something that we’re looking into — how do we improve that experience, where if you own specific art, how do you see it nicely, how do we make it look really good?