Sony Develops ‘Contactless’ Hardware Wallet for Digital Assets
Sony has announced the development of a new type of cryptocurrency hardware wallet that uses its IC card technology. The Japanese conglomerate also said that it firmly believes in the potential for the commercialization and widespread adoption of blockchain technology.
Secure Digital Assets
Tokyo-based Sony, a household name for decades, is getting into blockchain technology and cryptocurrency solutions. Sony Computer Science Laboratories, a group subsidiary, revealed on Oct. 23 that it has developed a hardware wallet for digital assets. It said the new technology uses its IC card protocol, an application that facilitates high-speed communication with payment readers.
The company said the card works in a “contactless” fashion because it uses “mutual authentication/encrypted communication” with the IC protocol. According to the documentation for the wallet, the company has developed and refined the IC protocol over the past few years.
“The IC card type hardware wallet is small, portable and useful, unlike typical existing hardware wallets that connect to PCs via USB,” Sony said. “In addition, it is possible to securely generate and store a private key with a highly reliable tamper-proof module within the IC card.”
Sony’s hardware wallet specifications
Focus on Blockchain Solutions
Sony said that the IC-based cards manage private keys for cryptocurrencies, but added that they also have other applications. The company is likely referring to a universal FIDO key (U2F) for platforms such as Google and Dropbox.
“It is an infrastructure technology with multiple possible applications,” it stated, indicating that it believes in the future of blockchain technology and hopes to bolster such infrastructure with its own product offerings.
Sony concluded by stating:
Sony’s announcement is not the first time the Japanese corporation has expressed an interest in distributed ledger protocols. One week before its hardware wallet announcement, it revealed that it is developing a blockchain solution for digital rights management. And about a year ago, it filed a patent for a blockchain-based education platform with IBM.