KeepKey Review: Is KeepKey An Underrated Wallet in the Market Today?

Wallet Reviews / 20.03.2020

If you are familiar with cryptocurrency hardware wallets, you have probably come across the KeepKey hardware wallet. KeepKey alongside TREZOR and Ledger make up the top 3 hardware wallets used to store private keys from the usual wallets or exchanges, thus preventing a remote attack intended to gain access to your digital coins. 

KeepKey Overview

KeepKey’s wallet, developed by the KeepKey company, was launched in 2015. KeepKey company has its headquarters in the US and was acquired by Shapeshift in August 2017. KeepKey employs advanced technology to offer the user the most secure platform to store their cryptocurrencies. 

Additionally, KeepKey being an HD wallet, allows users to generate and store an unspecified number of private keys used to access their cryptocurrencies. This is achieved by integrating with the computer’s wallet software, thus taking over a private key generation, transaction signing, and private key storage. Besides Bitcoin, KeepKey can store other cryptocurrencies, including Litecoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin, Dash, and Namecoin.  

Specifications

Materials

  • Anodized Aluminum Case 
  • Polycarbonate Front 

Technical Specs

USB HID 

  • micro USB connector
  • ARM® Cortex™-M3
  • TRNG (Hardware Random Number Generator)
  • 256×64 3.12″ OLED
  • Trezor Protocol Compatible
  • CPU: ARM Cortex-M3 processor. 

Dimensions 

  • Height: 38.0 mm
  • Width: 93.5 mm
  • Depth: 12.2 mm

Box Comes With: 

  • Woven Nylon USB Cable 
  • Recovery Sentence Backup Card 
  • Genuine Leather Backup Card Sleeve
  • Quick Start Guide 

Compatible With: 

  • Operating systems: PC, Mac, Linux, and Android. 
  • Software wallets: Functions with Electrum, MultiBit, and Mycelium. 

Hardware Design 

KeepKey is quite large, measuring 38 x 93.5 x12.2mm. The rectangular hardware design also boasts of a glass touchscreen single button for simplicity. It may be of concern that the wallet has a unique key. That is, most of the operations are performed via its app. The app mainly turns the device on/off and also acts as a confirmation button. 

KeepKey’s display is the largest compared to other hardware wallets, measuring a 256×64mm 3.12″ OLED screen. A polycarbonate screen casing protects the screen but does not confer sufficient protection against scratch. 

The large screen is quite advantageous to crypto enthusiasts to display cryptocurrency addresses and the recovery phase. Users don’t have to stress with scrolling back and forth to locate addresses. They can connect the KeepKey to a PC or laptop for charging or file transfer using a USB-A. 

Security Features

In upholding cryptocurrencies’ security, KeepKey features a PIN code backed with 18 to 24-word recovery seeds. This feature also applies to other hardware wallets, most notably Ledger and Trezor. Also, KeepKey employs number randomization, which prevents hackers from stealing users’ cryptocurrency using malware. Each time a user logs into their wallet, the PINs are randomized.

Nonetheless, the wallet seems not to have sufficient security features to grant uncompromised protection. Below are some of the security features: 

  • Private Key: Users’ private key is directly stored on KeepKey and cannot be retrieved from the device 
  • PIN Code: A four-digit PIN Code prevents unauthorized persons from gaining access to the wallet to view balances or conduct transactions. 
  • Recovery Sentence: The PIN code, as well as the entire wallet, is backed by a 12-word recovery sentence which is generated during the set-up. The recovery sentence can be used to recover private keys if the device is lost, damaged, or stolen. 
  • Passphrase: In addition to the PIN code, users can beef up security by selecting an additional word linked to the recovery sentence. Users should steer away from using this feature unless they fully understand its functionality.  

KeepKey Supported Coins

KeepKey supports over 40 different cryptocurrencies, including: 

  • Bitcoin 
  • Bitcoin Cash 
  • Bitcoin Gold 
  • DASH
  • Dogecoin
  • Ethereum
  • Litecoin

KeepKey Set-up

Setting up KeepKey is quite simple, even for beginners. The set-up process is similar to other hardware wallets but much more straightforward, making KeepKey ideal for beginners. The set-up process requires the use of the Google Chrome browser. Below the set-up process

  • Download a Google Chrome client fromGoogle Chrome browser and interface with your device. 
  • Open the Chrome App and press the center button to initialize the KeepKey. 
  • Next, select a label for your device. This step is crucial if you intend to have more than one KeepKey device. 
  • The next step is to come up with a 1-9-digit PIN for your KeepKey device. Then you will be required to confirm the numbers appear on the screen as you set up the PIN. 
  • The last and most important step is setting up your seed phrase. After setting up the seed, it will appear on the device, and you will be prompted to write it down on the supplied card. 

KeepKey ShapeShift Integration and its Advantage

KeepKey is the first cryptocurrency hardware wallet to integrate with ShapeShift to offer several advantages to the users. ShapeShift is an online blockchain exchange service. Its integration with KeepKey allows users to instantly exchange digital currencies, including Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Dogecoin, from their hardware device without having to share or expose their private keys online. 

ShapeShift API integrates with over 50 blockchain companies; therefore, users are sure of easy accessibility regardless of the coins they might be using. KeepKey users can access ShapeShift from the hardware device by unlocking the wallet to view the multiple accounts. A click can then make transactions on the platform of the button. Below are some of the advantages of ShapeShift integration.

  • ShapeShift Trading- KeepKey users can seamlessly buy, sell, or trade crypto assets directly from their hardware devices. There is no need to trust a third party as trading is non-custodial. This is quite an advantage to traders as no other cryptocurrency exchange offers such a feature. 
  • Hardware Security-As a result of this integration, users enjoy offline security while still trading in an exchange environment. This means that users have full control of their private keys and even have access to an intuitive web interface. 
  • Real-Time Market Data- KeepKey users receive real-time market data straight to their hardware devices. Therefore, don’t have to access information from a 3rd-party site, exposing them to a security vulnerability. 
  • Account Information-Users can access their dashboard balances from anywhere and anytime. They must ensure that their hardware wallet is connected to ShapeShift to sign off transactions. 

KeepKey vs Ledger vs TREZOR 

When comparing KeepKey against its main competitor, wallets, TREZOR, and Ledger, the wallet seems not to match much of its competitors in terms of functionality and additional security features. TREZOR is much smaller compared to Ledger and KeepKey. Users can reduce the Ledger Nano S in size by folding. KeepKey, on the other hand, is quite large and bulky, therefore not perfect for a minimalistic individual. TREZOR AND Ledger Nano S are much alike and are far much in competition compared to KeepKey. Nonetheless, they are quite pricey. 

Bottomline 

All in all, KeepKey is an excellent cryptocurrency hardware wallet thanks to its ease of use, beautiful design, and functional security. Cryptocurrency beginners would surely love this wallet as it’s easy to set-up and also to use. The integration to ShapeShift is a plus allowing users to trade cryptocurrency directly from the device without necessarily sharing their private keys. The company is yet to release another model of the wallet, which should offer even more functionalities.   

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Born in Bucharest, Marius is the founder of Crypto Adventure. Since his first contact with Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, he never stopped believing that they are one of the most important innovations of our time, which will forever change the way business is done.