Tech 6 February 2018Vince Dioquino
Trezor won’t support CashAddr, cites backend compatibility issues
Whenever there’s a new thing around the block, everyone turns their heads to see what’s up. When the new CashAddr format was introduced by Bitcoin ABC to the Bitcoin Cash community, it was received with warmth and gratitude. However, not everyone in the community felt the same way.
Hardware wallet companies like Ledger, KeepKey, and Trezor are major brands which most users in the Bitcoin Cash community trust and rely on for their daily needs. While the first two have been quick to upgrade their products’ software and accommodate the new CashAddr format designed specifically for Bitcoin Cash, the latter hassuggested that they may never support it.
According to a Trezor developer, their hardware wallets won’t provide support for CashAddr’s Bitcoin Cash new address protocol, an upgrade which secures BCH addresses from both human and machine error while also providing extended functionality.
In a Reddit thread, u/stickac, CTO and developer at Trezor cited backend compatibility as an issue affecting their decision: “This will break compatibility with most of the existing systems, which will make it even less interesting for merchants, users, etc. Lead developer is totally ignoring feedback from experts in the industry creating more and more mess,” adding that “the proposed change for Cash is non-standard and non-trivial and frankly, so we won’t be rushing into supporting that one.”
The developer’s response was met with petitions from Bitcoin Cash users for the company to reconsider.
“I like the wallet but it’s kind of ridiculous you’re not even going to try,” said u/kikimonster. u/keo604 shared the concern, saying, “We’re Trezor resellers (just received another batch of 25 Trezors) and our customers are primarily BCH users. Please support the new address format. Thank you.”
Another user expressed disdain over Trezor’s apparent unwillingness to adapt to the upgrade. “Every time I see these (this) decision, instead of ‘we are open to every opportunity’, I get frustrated,” said u/koalalorenzo.
Bach Nguyen, a community manager from Trezor, recently tweeted: “It’s much less about consulting us, but more about consensus. There are three different address formats for Bitcoin Cash right now. Let’s wait until the dust settles so we don’t see a fourth one.”
It’s important to note that even before the new address format was implemented, the community and the decentralized team of developers working on the Bitcoin Cash network first formed a consensus before reaching the decision. Updates like the CashAddr are designed to ensure a seamless and secure experience for the Bitcoin Cash community. If the problem is identified as a backend issue, what the Trezor development team may do for its Bitcoin Cash users is to release an unofficial nightly build to test the dependencies surrounding CashAddr. If it compiles and runs well with BCH user’s devices, they might have to retract their statement and support the new protocol upgrade after all.
Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (SegWit) chain are referenced as BTC coins; tokens on the Bitcoin Cash ABC chain are referenced as BCH, BCH-ABC or BAB coins.
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