HTC blazed trails in the late 2000s by bringing a smartphone to market based on the Android operating system. Now it wants to do the same with blockchain.
The Taiwanese electronics maker on Tuesday unveiled the Exodus smartphone, which would serve as both a mobile connecting point to the world of decentralized networks and a storage device for those who want to carry their crypto in their pocket.
According to Phil Chen - who previously founded HTC's Vive virtual reality product line and recently returned to the company to spearhead the Genesis project - the company aims to start distributing the device in short order.
"We're looking to ship by the end of this year," Chen told CoinDesk.
While HTC isn't the only company working on a blockchain-dedicated smartphone - Sirin Labs recently raised $157 million in an initial coin offering to build the "Finney" - it's by far the biggest company of its kind to undertake the effort.
And the way the product has been internally positioned indicates that HTC sees a powerful role for decentralized technologies, particularly for putting the power to control consumers' digital identities firmly in their own hands.
And Raymond Pao, associate vice president of VR new technology for HTC, said that "will be building the framework and phone that powers the decentralized web."
"We believe smartphones will be a critical component for the entire crypto ecosystem. This phone will act as the hub, just like the PC did in the early days of the Internet," he told CoinDesk, going on to say:"If we look at the industry, there are moving in two directions. One side is 100% centralized so that the platform company knows all the details of the users. The value the platform companies can provide is fully customized service to each single person. The more the user shares to the platform company, the better-customized services the platform companies can provide. On the opposite side, t...