Just over a month after Robinhood publicly released its first crypto wallet, the company announced it is working on a second. The new wallet is non-custodial, giving users exclusive custody of the private keys needed to manage their funds on the blockchain. That means users don’t depend on Robinhood if the system fails, but also risk losing their money completely if they lose the private key.
Robinhood says the new wallet will be offered as a standalone app, but hopes it will “have the same simple and accessible design” as the main service. The wallet offers the ability to store and trade cryptocurrencies, including many that are not available through the Robinhood app with “no network fees” and supports NFTs and DeFi (decentralized finance) protocols.
While Robinhood is best known as a stock trading platform related to last year’s meme stock trading, cryptocurrency purchases have become an increasingly important part of its business. When the company announced the general availability of its crypto wallet last month, the company said Bitcoin was the number 1 recurring asset that its users bought in 2022. CoinDesk reported at the time.
Prior to the launch of its first wallet, Robinhood allowed its users to buy and sell cryptocurrency on its platform, but not spend it, essentially allowing it to be used only as a speculative asset.
Custodial wallets, like the one released by Robinhood earlier this year, are often seen as a more user-friendly introduction to the world of crypto, where there is less risk of losing assets due to lost credentials. But among cryptocurrency enthusiasts, the phrase “not your keys, not your coins” has become a popular critique of custodial wallets, arguing that you only have real control over your digital assets if you only have the private key. The addition of Robinhood’s new non-custodial wallet should allow it to serve both types of customers.
Robinhood says it will launch its non-custodial wallet in beta “later this summer” and invites anyone interested in trying it out to join the waiting list. A full launch is planned for sometime before the end of the year.