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Trezor Wallets: The Pros and Cons

The fast-paced world of crypto can be exciting for investors, but with all the stories of hacks and lost fortunes, it’s easy to get nervous about security. All traders dream of a foolproof method of storing their crypto and losing the nagging worry of waking up to find their investments gone.

Hardware wallets, like those manufactured by Trezor, aren’t constantly connected to the internet like hot wallets. This air gap between your tokens and a potential hack is an excellent way to improve your protection.

Trezor offers a range of hardware wallets, but is one the right choice for you?

In this article, we’ll delve into the Trezor hardware wallet. We’ll examine its features, security measures, and overall usability to help you decide if it’s the perfect fit for safeguarding your crypto.

What Are Trezor Wallet’s Features?

Founded in Prague in 2013, Trezor was one of the pioneers of hardware wallets. With over a million users worldwide, it seems plenty of investors trust their crypto to a Trezor wallet. Below, we take a look at their features to see if that trust is justified:

Security

Security is of paramount importance to any hardware wallet. After all, that’s why traders buy them. Here’s how Trezor deals with the security of its wallets:  

  • Offline storage (cold storage): Perhaps the most significant security feature is that your private keys are generated and stored offline on your Trezor device. As your wallet is isolated from the internet, the chances of you falling victim to malware or hacking are removed until you reconnect.
  • PIN protection: If your Trezor device is lost or stolen, your funds remain protected by a PIN code you set up upon initialization.
  • Recovery seed phrase: Trezor utilizes recovery seed phrases (typically 12, 18, or 24 words) as the final failsafe. If your device is compromised or lost, this seed phrase allows you to regain access to your cryptocurrency holdings. As with any code or PIN, be sure to keep your seed phrase secret and safe.
  • Open-source transparency: Trezor wallets use open-source software, meaning the code used in their devices is freely auditable. This allows the security community to inspect it for vulnerabilities, verify its integrity, and suggest improvements.
The Shamir backup

Trezor’s Shamir backup is an alternative to the traditional single recovery seed phrase used by most hardware wallets. With a standard recovery seed, all your wallet information is contained within a single phrase of 12, 18, or 24 words.

The Shamir backup (only available on their mid- and high-tier devices) mitigates the chances of your seed phrase being compromised. It does this by allowing you to divide your recovery information into multiple shares (up to 16). You then set a threshold – the minimum number of shares needed to restore your wallet.

For example, you could create five shares and set a threshold of three, so any combination of three shares could give you access to your wallet. There are any number of places you could store your shares, such as distributing them among family or keeping them in separate secure locations.

Although Shamir increases your security, it does make recovery more complex and time-consuming if things go wrong. You’ll need to find multiple shares, and if you store them with a friend or family member, hope they’re contactable when you need them.

A Range of Wallets 

Trezor caters to a range of user needs with three models, all of which offer view-only capability for iOS devices:

Trezor Model One (priced at USD 59): Designed for simplicity and affordability, the original Trezor prioritizes secure offline storage. It features a compact form with a small OLED screen and two physical buttons for navigation. Despite its modest user interface, it supports a vast range of cryptocurrencies.

Trezor Safe 3 (priced at USD 79): The newest Trezor offering has an advanced secure element (SE) chip, similar to those used in passports and credit cards, strengthening your keys’ security. This device has both the standard and the Shamir backup, and it closely resembles the Model One in size and button layout.

Trezor Model T (priced at USD 179): Trezor’s top-of-the-range wallet has a larger, color touchscreen display for a more user-friendly experience. It offers the most comprehensive cryptocurrency support among Trezor wallets and includes the Shamir backup and direct integrations with some exchanges.

Your choice of wallet would depend on your budget, desired security level, preference for a touchscreen interface, and your portfolio. However, all the wallets we looked at were attractive and had good levels of security.

Trezor Ease of Use and Functionality 

Trezor aims to strike a balance between security and accessibility. Of the wallets we looked at, all were user-friendly, even for those less familiar with tech. The Trezor Suite software interface was clear and easy to use, and managing assets, sending and receiving, and viewing balances were straightforward.

While other hardware wallet brands offer dedicated mobile apps or Bluetooth connectivity, Trezor has a desktop-based app. Some may see this as a limitation, and they’d be right, but it does reduce potential attack vectors.

Trezor’s customer support was quick to respond, clear, and helpful, which is essential for all users, but especially those who are new to crypto.

Conclusion

Trezor wallets are certainly a valid choice for crypto traders. The offline storage and robust security features help provide peace of mind in a world where scams and hacks are proliferating like weeds. While the cost may be higher than software alternatives, the added protection is invaluable.

Whether a Trezor wallet is right for you depends on your crypto holdings and your risk tolerance. If, like most of us, you prioritize security, you should consider a Trezor wallet.

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