The hardware wallet market is growing as cryptocurrency grows.
KeepKey also entered the market.
Competition has lowered prices, but it makes choosing the right hardware wallet a tough decision.
In this guide, we will see how the three main competitors in the space fare in many areas like security, coin support, setup and user experience.
The Ledger Nano X is Ledger’s newest hardware wallet.
The main benefit is that it has bluetooth, making it the first hardware wallet that connects with iOS devices.
It’s more secure than using just an app on your phone, because all transactions are signed with the Nano X.
It’s very easy to setup and use.
The TREZOR Model-T is a second generation Bitcoin/crypto hardware wallet manufactured by SatoshiLabs.
The TREZOR line debuted in 2014 with the TREZOR One and has remained one of the most popular cryptocurrency cold storage solutions to date.
KeepKey has a nice size, but the single button navigation makes it the hardest to use, despite the large screen (more on that below).
The main argument against KeepKey is that it lacks support for many coins. KeepKey also is the slowest of the three to add new features.
A screen is a really important security feature for hardware wallets. If you don’t have a screen on a hardware wallet, it is COMPLETELY USELESS.
The screen lets you backup the recovery phrase without exposing it on a computer. It also allows you to review the addresses and amounts before confirming an outgoing transaction.
All three devices have a screen.
The TREZOR T has a color screen. Ledger Nano X and KeepKey have OLED screens.
The Ledger Nano X features the smallest and lowest resolution screen of the 3 hardware wallets. Of course, you don’t really need a very large screen to use a hardware wallet, but generally bigger is better.
One problem with the Nano X screen is its low resolution, making m’s like like r’s and n’s put together - see “m” vs “rn”. This makes it more difficult to verify addresses (as mentioned above). That may be worth the additional $40, but for many it won’t be.
The Model T’s full color touch screen makes it the easiest hardware wallet to navigate and the easiest to use when verifying addresses.
The Keepkey screen is quite bit and easy to read, though fairly low resolution. It is the largest screen of any of these hardware wallets.
The Ledger Nano X supports the most coins. The TREZOR T also supports a good amount of coins. KeepKey supports the least amount of coins.
All three devices support any ERC20 token.
Here are the supported coins out of the top 20 largest cryptocurrencies:
|Ledger Nano X ||TREZOR T ||KeepKey |
|Binance Coin (BNB)|
|Bcash SV (BSV)|
|Ethereum Classic (ETC)|
Of the three wallets, Keepkey is by far the cheapest at $49, making it even less expensive than the first gen Ledger Nano S and Trezor One. However, Keepkey really seems to have let this wallet go.
There appears to be no active development on the wallet and there are no known plans for a second generation version. You should expect security on the Keepkey to be relatively lackluster as there have not been any firmware updates in ages.
The Ledger Nano X will run you $119, while the Trezor T will run you $159. The reason for the higher Trezor T price is due to the full color touch screen.
Not only is it much easier to navigate than the Ledger Nano X, but it is potentially less likely to result in a user error.
Each wallet does have some unique differences that are hard to see in the picture.
The KeepKey, on the other hand, is the biggest of the three.
The TREZOR T and Ledger Nano X both have two physical buttons, while the KeepKey has one.
The Trezor and Ledger devices are a very safe way to store your cryptocurrencies but the Keepkey is probably not that safe anymore. However, all three are much better than using normal wallets on your phone or computer.
Still, there are some important differences, the main one being that the Ledger Nano X is based on a dual chip architecture featuring a secure element.
The Trezor model T support Shamir’s Secret Sharing, which is a way to split up your private key into multiple parts and spread them out, decreasing the chance of catastophic loss. Learn more about this feature in our Trezor Model T review or watch the short video below:
All three devices have screens which means you don’t need to expose the recovery phrase to your computer.
In order to use any hardware wallet you need software that helps you command and interact with the wallet.
The table below shows the compatibility of Bitcoin wallet software with each hardware wallet.
|TREZOR T||Ledger Nano X||KeepKey|
|MultiBit HD |
Unfortunately, none of the wallets offer full node support on their native software. You will need to turn to 3rd party wallet software like Electrum if you want to get the most out of your full node with your hardware wallet.
All 3 wallets support integrations with electrum or electrum server. You can find documentation on setting that up for each wallet below:
However, Ledger recently announced full-node support with it’s Ledger Live wallet software is coming soon!
Ledger Live will soon feature Full Node support, as announced by @ledger CEO @_pgauthier at @surfinbitcoin.— David da Silva Rosa (@dldasilvarosa) October 2, 2020
"we want to build products on the principles of privacy and liberty" pic.twitter.com/NCSgKzhrsl
Coin Control is the ability to select which UTXOs you spend so that you can decide between a LIFO (Last In, First Out) or FIFO (First In, First Out). This has tax implications but also security implications as well. If you have tiny amounts of Bitcoin in a UTXO, you can avoid spending it, which prevents others from tracking you in what is called a ‘dust attack’.
In the same announcement mentioned above, Ledger promised that Coin Control would be coming to Ledger Live, and now its finally here as part of Ledger Live’s advanced settings. That makes Ledger the only one of these hardware wallets to support coin control natively.
You can however use Electrum with keepkey and Trezor to utilize coin control there if you wish.
Yes, all three wallets support Segwit addresses.
The main benefit of Segwit is lower fees when sending Bitcoins.
While we wouldn’t say there is a “best”, you can definetely do better than the Keepkey.
KeepKey’s lack of updates are cause for concern, and there is no scenario where we would suggest buying a one.
The TREZOR T is $159 vs $119 for the Ledger Nano X. If the high rez color touch screen is important, the TREZOR T might be worth it.