Bitcoin privacy wallet Wasabi has set out on a mission to make Bitcoin privacy more user-friendly. As the BTC Times reported last year, the developers behind Wasabi seek to make certain privacy best practices “effortless” — the pursuit tackles what some see as a major pain point in the user experience surrounding Bitcoin today. Now Wasabi has released a first look at its upcoming UI revamp.
One of Wasabi’s main appeals to its users is its CoinJoin feature, which addresses the transparent nature of the Bitcoin blockchain: CoinJoins serve to anonymize Bitcoin transactions. In a CoinJoin, the inputs from multiple senders are mixed to generate a large number of outputs that make it considerably harder to track which output belongs to which input, thereby boosting the senders’ privacy. CoinJoin participants receive the same amount they contributed to a transaction, minus network and CoinJoin fees.
Besides design perks such as light and dark mode, a network fee quick view, and statistics detailing the privacy level of a user’s funds, he new interface sneak peek hints at improved functionality and enhanced features, such as the ability to automate CoinJoins, which would make the technology feasible for payments. Dubbed Wasabi 2.0, the new version of the wallet will initially be launched as an internal preview version in the coming months. Until Wasabi 2.0 is fully released to the public, the wallet’s development team will continue supporting Wasabi 1.0.
“We’ll improve [the user experience] by enabling CoinJoins to happen automatically without user action and advance the latter by utilizing the insight that coin control for CoinJoined coins isn’t very useful, so we can delegate coin control to advanced sections of the wallet,” Wasabi founder Nopara told the BTC Times in November last year.
Along with providing a more seamless user experience for the wallet, Wasabi Wallet’s developers are integrating WabiSabi into the new release.
WabiSabi is an integration of CoinJoin that aims to facilitate “faster, more cost-efficient collaborative transactions without waste, lay the foundation for payments within CoinJoins, and open the door for combinations with other technologies.” WabiSabi represents “the best” the Wasabi team could achieve with on-chain Bitcoin privacy as it stands.
The often steep learning curve associated with Bitcoin wallets is frequently quoted as one of the areas the Bitcoin ecosystem needs to improve upon. Bitcoin transactions work very differently from traditional payment services and come with long address formats, which in itself requires users to familiarize themselves with a new interface concept. In addition, new users often find the concept of transaction finality and the inability to reverse transactions or request help from a third party to recover funds intimidating.
In the case of CoinJoins, however, even experienced Bitcoin users often have little to no exposure. By completely overhauling its interface and automating large parts of the CoinJoin process, Wasabi seeks to appeal to a large group of Bitcoin users that may want to improve their privacy but have so far shied away from complex tools such as CoinJoin.