Binance Makes Its First-Ever Acquisition: ‘Trust Wallet’, a Mobile Ethereum Wallet and DApp Browser

On Tuesday (31 July 2018), Binance, one of the world's largest crypto exchanges, announced that it had acquired Trust Wallet, a mobile (Android and iOS) Ethereum wallet (with support for ERC20, ERC223 and ERC721 tokens) and Web 3.0 (DApp) browser.

Trust Wallet, which was first released (for Android) on 25 October 2017, is an open-source mobile wallet app that support Ethereum and over 20,000 different Ethereum based tokens. Its features include:

  • the private key is only stored locally, and is protected with many layers of security;
  • the source code has been audited by security experts;
  • decentralized exchange (through a partnership with Kyber Network); and
  • a fully functioning Web 3.0 browser that allows the user to discover and interact with Ethereum DApps.

Zhao "CZ" Changpeng, CEO of Binance told Bloomberg:

"The users control 100 percent of their funds... Now we have both a decentralized and centralized solution for custody.”

Binance says that Trust Wallet "has built a reputation for security and has held itself to the guiding principles that it will never access user wallets, hold private keys, and ask for personal information." It also says that the "Trust Wallet brand and team will retain the autonomy and freedom to develop the core product while benefiting from the increased synergy from Binance, including the broad user base and the upcoming DEX."

Finally, the Binance CEO told Bloomberg that "Binance is in early-stage talks with a few other acquisition targets."In an interview with Fortune, CZ said that he admired the Trust Wallet development team’s engineering skills, and that this acquisition provided a way for Binance to offer customers a decentralized way to store their cryptocurrency. 

Viktor Radchenko, Trust Wallet's founder said in press release:

“This is an incredible opportunity for Trust Wallet to work with the biggest and the most respected exchange in the world, but we also feel as though we are aligning with a partner that shares a similar approach towards security and user management... This is a great partnership and we look forward to collaborating with the amazing team from Binance.”

According to CNBC, this is how Radchenko explained why he created Trust Wallet:

"I started working on Trust Wallet because app stores did not have any open source wallets for Ethereum and ERC20 tokens. Our focus have always been on building better interface for storing and accessing funds, as well as laying the infrastructure for other developers to build dapps.”

CNBC says that CZ had this to say about why Binance was interested in mobile crypto wallets and why it had chosen Trust Wallet:

“Wallets are the most fundamental interface to the crypto economy, and a secure and easy-to-use wallet is key to proliferate the adoption of cryptocurrencies. Trust Wallet is simply the best in this category in my opinion. Trust Wallet is an on-chain wallet, where user private keys are decentralized, ie, stored on user devices. This compliments the centralized architecture of Binance nicely. Now we have the best of both worlds, and users have their choice... Viktor and the Trust team are product and user focused. The team is small and highly effective and shares the same values as Binance. The combination of Trust Wallet’s team and product is the perfect epitome of what we look for in a great company.”


Featured Image Credit: Image Courtesy of Trust Wallet

Crypto Investors Buy Bitcoins at $0.32 as Amazon Cloud Outages Affect Exchanges

Update 10:32 UTC - It soeems some cryptocurrency traders were also able to buy Ethereum's ether at $0.33 per coin as cryptocurrencies seemingly flash-crashed on BitMax.

The exchange hasn't yet commented on the incident and has only made it clear withdrawals are halted on its platform. Rolling back the trades may be a possibility.

Cryptocurrency investors were able to buy bitcoin for as little as $0.3 worth of USDT after Amazon‘s cloud service, AWS, suffered an outage that affected various crypto exchanges.

According to Founding partner at Primitive Ventures Dovey Wan, an unnamed Asian exchange saw price instability affect in a way that some trades were executed and allowed investors to buy bitcoin, which was trading at around $10,200 at the time, for less than $1 in Tether’s stablecoin.

The image Dovey Wan posted reportedly came from a Telegram group related to BitMax. The order book data, however, may not have come from BitMax itself as the exchange isn’t certain it's from its own platform. Since the outage, however, it has halted withdrawals.

Other cryptocurrency exchanges were notably also affected by AWS’ outage. Binance, one of the world’s leading crypto exchanges in terms of trading volume, revealed the outage affected some of its users throughout the world. As its CEO Changpeng Zhao tweeted:

KuCoin, another popular Exchange, posted a notice on its website revealing that “due to the overheating of part of our chassis in the machine room we deployed in AWS, Tokyo, part of our services might become unavailable.” It added its engineers were looking o deploy resources to deal with the problem.

On its status page, AWS reports its facilities in Tokyo have been facing problems, but the company has claimed it found the root cause of the problem and working to recover from the problem.

AWS' status pageSource: AWS

Amazon Web Services notably controls a large part of the cloud market, and runs the backend of various popular websites – including Netflix, Pinterest, Spotify, and Slack. It faced other services outages in the last few months and when it did, a large part of internet-based services relying on it went down.