When it comes to storing your own crypto assets, many people become aware of the stress and complexities associated with being the custodian of your own wealth. Securely storing private keys, understanding gas fees, and the endless amount of times you have to double-check that you copied the right address can become a massive burden for anyone new to DeFi and crypto at large.
With that in mind, in order for crypto to scale to billions of users in a decentralized fashion, the industry has to do better about creating intuitive solutions for storing and recovering your crypto assets.
Fortunately, this year we’ve seen the release of Argent Wallet: an Ethereum non-custodial smart contract wallet with built-in recovery tools and improved accessibility features. The wallet is currently available for early access on both iOS and Android. The application boasts a perfect 5-star rating on the iOS app store based on 95 reviews.
In short, Argent Wallet provides:
- Recovery with no paper backup
- Free transactions
- Simple Addresses
Argent was able to do this by creating a new class of wallets, called smart contract wallets.
The Implications of Smart Contract Wallets
Smart contract wallets, also known as “Smart Wallets” are non-custodial wallets leveraging smart contracts to provide users with unique capabilities and features. With Argent, your mobile device holds the private keys while a smart contract holds your funds which ultimately creates a new paradigm for wallet functionality.
These types of wallets enable additional security and recovery features for users to mitigate any risks associated with storing your own private keys and significantly abstracting many of the complexities associated with existing wallets.
Argent Wallet has been one of the most innovative wallet solutions we’ve seen to date. With Argent, users can benefit from a wide range of features that are non-existent in most other non-custodial wallets. Some of these features include:
Recovery Tools: Argent introduces Guardians where wallet owners can assign trusted devices or individuals to recover their funds without the need for a private key or seed phrase. So if you ever lose your phone, you can simply request access from your Guardians and recover your funds upon majority approval. It is important to note that Argent Guardians never have access to your private keys at any point.
Set Daily Limits: Similar to traditional banks, Argent allows you to set daily limits and withdrawals on your account. Therefore, if you’re wallet is ever compromised, the chances the attacker will be able to withdraw the entirety of your holdings are reduced dramatically.
Human-Readable Addresses: By integrating with Ethereum Name Services (ENS), Argent provides users with free sign-ups for human-readable addresses. This feature drastically mitigates any confusion when sending and receiving any digital assets as it mimics a Venmo transaction.
No Transaction Fees: As a bonus, Argent also provides users with free transactions through the addition of meta transactions. Users no longer have to worry about having ETH in their wallets in order to transact their favorite ERC-20 tokens, like Dai.
All of these features combine to create a simplistic and intuitive wallet experience, even for new users in crypto. Despite going above and beyond with these features, the Argent team has gone the extra mile by capitalizing on the growing DeFi narrative and integrating a handful of popular DeFi applications in a seamless fashion.
With Argent Wallet, users can access multiple DeFi applications with a few clicks and easily benefit from the wide range currently opportunities available on the market. Many new platforms have been integrated in Argent as a result of Argent V1 which can be read about here.
MakerDAO: As one of the backbones for DeFi, Argent allows you to easily open, close and manage a Maker Vault. With Maker, users can receive a secured loan in the form of Dai (a stablecoin pegged to the US Dollar) where ETH acts as the collateral behind the loan. Argent simplifies this process to a few clicks and even abstracts the need for holding MKR when closing out your loan.
Compound Finance: As one of the most popular lending applications to date, Argent allows users to grow their holdings through Compound. With Compound, users can earn interest by supplying their assets to a decentralized lending market while retaining the ability to remove their assets at any time with interest and no fees.
Kyber Network: If you’re a more savvy crypto investor interested in explore a range of DeFi tokens, Argent has integrated Kyber Network into the wallet to allow you to easily buy and sell crypto assets through its decentralized exchange.
While Argent has done a phenomenal job at creating an intuitive and simplistic wallet, it is important to outline some of the downsides when using the wallet. For the most part, the biggest drawback is the fact that Argent is an Ethereum-only wallet. This leaves out the ability to directly store BTC along with other major crypto assets like Litecoin, Binance Coin, and Tezos to name a few. With that in mind, users can store Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC) which is an ERC-20 token fully-collateralized by a reserve of Bitcoin. If you’re interested in learning more about wrapped Bitcoin and other Ethereum-based Bitcoin alternatives, feel free to reference our write-up here.
The only other drawback with Argent is its limited on-boarding. Given that the wallet is rather new, prospective new users will have to join a waiting list to get access to the wallet, which can take some time. In the coming future, we can expect that Argent will lift this limitation and create an open, accessible DeFi wallet for global users as they continue to scale their operations.
All in all, we are very impressed with Argent’s smart contract wallet. The amount of security features it offers in tandem with the Venmo-like capabilities, as well as the handful of DeFi integrations, makes Argent a clear leader in the wallet space. We’re very excited to see Argent continue to push the envelope in wallet innovation and provide a better user experience for the next wave of crypto adopters. Lastly, we have a strong inclination that Argent will continue to add more and more DeFi applications into its wallet in the coming future.
Analyst at Bankless – one of the leading resources for open finance. Lucas is an active contributor to the DeFi ecosystem with appearances in other notable DeFi outlets including The Defiant and Our Network. He has years of experience working with dozens blockchain and token startups where he focused on token economics, marketing, and growth.