The Solana Mobile team has taken a massive step toward making digital assets management and the overall web3 experience easier and more secure with the launch of Saga. Saga is a Solana-powered Android smartphone with unique functionalities and features embedded in it. It is a flagship-quality hardware device purpose-built for crypto by Solana Mobile and OSOM.
Anatoly Yakovenko, Solana co-founder communicates that “the most powerful self-custody experiences in crypto – the ones where users are signing transactions as easily and often as they can send emails – have been stuck on desktop.” He adds that “the only companies with the resources to materialize the self-custody mobile future we are all dreaming of, Apple and Google, have had no updates to give on their roadmaps for crypto.”
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On this premise, Anatoly Yakovenko claims that it is high time web3 developers started building for mobile usage instead of just building around mobile usage. By doing so, crypto will tend to go mobile to a greater extent, considering that almost 7 billion people make use of smartphones.
In accordance, the Solana Labs engineering team began the process of building a premium web3 mobile hardware experience in 2021. The positive outcome of this action is seen in the Saga and Solana Mobile Stack releases.
Solana Mobile Rolls Out Saga
In an event held in New York on June 23, Solana Mobile, a subsidiary of Solana Labs, was excited to roll out its flagship web3 Android mobile phone named Saga. Also, Solana Mobile teamed up with OSOM to integrate Solana Mobile Stack (SMS) on Saga.
With Saga, Solana Labs aims to set an exotic standard for web3 experience on mobile. Categorically, the Android mobile phone is designed and manufactured by OSOM, a leading Android development company.
More so, Saga possesses unique properties which include a 6.67″ OLED display, 12 GigaByte RAM, 512 GigaByte storage, and Snapdragon® 8+ Gen 1 Mobile Platform.
Meanwhile, Saga pre-order is open, with delivery set to be done in the first quarter of 2023. From the announcement, pre-orders impose a $100 fully-refundable deposit fee, which will be applied to the anticipated final cost of $1,000.
Interestingly, a Saga Pass NFT is on its way. This NFT will only be available to early adopters of the Saga smartphone, with preference to be given to developers, degens, and power users.
Additionally, with this Saga Pass NFT, users get to participate in the governance of the Solana Mobile Stack platform.
Solana Mobile Stack (SMS)
Solana Mobile Stack (SMS), launched alongside Saga is a framework for Android, which enables developers to create rich mobile experiences for wallets and applications on Solana.
Per the launch announcement, SMS also contains a “Secure Element” for users to manage private keys. In other words, Solana Mobile Stack incorporates a Seed Vault that facilitates instant signing of transactions, while keeping private keys separated from wallets, applications, and the Android operating system.
That way, users’ security and ownership of digital assets are greatly guaranteed. Other initial features that come with the Solana Mobile Stack include a Mobile Wallet Adapter, Solana Pay for Android, and the Solana dApp Store.
Here is what Raj Gokal, co-founder of Solana said about the Solana Mobile Stack;
“Developers can now bring the power of Solana to the computers in our pockets, not just our backpacks. Solana can revolutionize so much of what we do every day, but we need to open the possibilities for decentralized apps on our mobile devices in order for this potential to be realized.”
Furthermore, with this open-source software toolkit for Android, users can mint NFTs anywhere, play web3 games on Solana, participate in token-gated mobile commerce experiences based on owned digital assets, and transact for goods and/or services with their securely held digital assets.
Crypto Community Reacts
However, these developments by Solana have been welcomed with mixed reactions by the crypto community. Many industry giants and crypto projects like StepN, Magic Eden, Okay Bears, Orca, Phantom, etc have all shown adoption for SMS. On the other hand, some industry players like Charles Hoskinson have criticized the Saga smartphone move, capitalizing on the frequent outages of the Solana blockchain.