PRODUCT REVIEW: SIRIN LABS FINNEY
By Teddy Cleps
A review of the Sirin Labs Finney, the world first Cryptocurrency phone.
As a cryptocurrency enthusiast to finally be able to handle and use this device is beyond exciting, I have been waiting for the launch of the Finney since the announcement of their ICO back in 2017.
Sirin Labs, the project behind this device has a strong reputation for building the safest and most exclusive devices – like the Solarin selling for an average of $14,000. They have now decided to build a more affordable device whose main target are users that actively need to store and spend cryptocurrencies.
Today I have the pleasure of guiding you through the device unboxing process, cryptocurrency features, camera and general performance as a smartphone.
What’s Inside the Box?
If you are used to mainstream smartphones, the packaging alone with offer your a very unique experience.
The satin black box is double the size of the average smartphone, upon removing the top and unfolding the first layer you are greeted by a “Welcome to the Blockchain era” message that genuinely gave me goosebumps – it still feels unreal to see companies finally leveraging this technology.
As you unbox the rest of the items you are immediately aware that you are dealing with a premium device, the attention to detail is absurd. Everything is carefully placed and hidden in little compartments, the items that you will find inside are the following:
- The actual device, Finney.
- An international charger.
- Adapters for multiple countries ( UK, US, EU, AU, KO )
- USB 3.0 type C charging cable.
- A dongle that converts from USB type C to the traditional 3.5mm audio jack.
- SIM extraction tool.
- Various documents.
How is this a Cryptocurrency phone?
At first glance the Finney looks like a relatively normal smartphone, the design is definitely very unique but there is nothing about it that shouts “this is a cryptocurrency device” – which is great for safety, as you don’t want to have a device that is easily recognisable for its cryptocurrency storing features.
There are features that no smartphone has ever witnessed before, the Finney provides a level of security that was previously unobtainable – responsible for making this device very special.
Cold Storage Wallet
Today as long as you have a smartphone you can download a hot wallet to store your cryptocurrencies; they are not the safest as they are continuously online and your private keys are “stored” by a third party.
Sirin Labs with this device took their wallet to a whole new other level, the Finney’s cold storage wallet is hidden behind the phone and not within the phone’s software; as this makes the process of storing the funds drastically safer – to access the wallet you simply have to swipe it up!
- Additionally to further increase the security of the cold storage wallet attached to the smartphone, they implemented its own separate and dedicated:
It is like literally having a Ledger wallet glued to your phone, this allows you to safely send, receive and convert cryptocurrencies – something that is exclusive to this device.
The Finney is the first device to have easy access to decentralised applications! If you are confused imagine the App Store / Play Store focused solely for applications that are running on the blockchain.
This is magnificent as it will increase the awareness of blockchain applications by making them accessible to anyone that purchases this device – you will finally be able to play Cryptokitties and buy a virtual plot on Decentraland!
Additionally there is Learn & Earn program which rewards users for watching adverts of upcoming projects. I’ve watched two adverts and within minutes I was transferred more or less 10 USD to my wallet.
A feature that is very interesting is the Token Conversion Service, it allows you to immediately convert cryptocurrencies with other cryptocurrencies without having to use an exchange – as long as they are supported by the phone’s ecosystem.
I have used it and it worked very well, however I only converted small amounts – so i’m not aware of how the phone may deal with bigger positions and the potential liquidity issues that may come with it.
Smartphones typically have a couple of preinstalled applications that you never use or that you probably already have deleted; the Finney however has a couple of applications that are fun to use or genuinely very valuable for those that seek security.
This is an application that allows its users to have secure and HD performance calls – its quality exceeds other secure communication solutions, providing a similar user experience to regular calls and text messages.
I’ve been happily using this service for years and it’s great to see it preinstalled on the Finney. ProtonMail is the world’s most secure encrypted email service developed by CERN and MIT scientist.
Cointelegraph Every cryptocurrency enthusiast knows this website and its great to see it preinstalled on the Finney. It allows to you to easily access Blockchain, Cryptocurrency and Bitcoin news – you can browse and save headlines and/or explore real time market data!
In terms of performance the Finney is as good as it gets with a Snapdragon 845 processor and 6GB of RAM, along with 128GB of internal storage and a MicroSD card slot.
For the average user this phone has more power than you would ever need, as every application runs extremely smoothly. A reliable way to analyse the performance of a smartphone is to download and play a heavy duty game, in this case we tried “Fortnite”.
This game typically puts a lot of strain on smartphones, as it requires a powerful device in order to make it run properly. However, on the Finney the game was running extremely smoothly and it did not lag/show weakness even once.
Same positive results were shown when trying the “Real Racing 3” as it is known to challenge most smartphone in the market.
I was genuinely impressed by the battery life, an aspect that is very important to me – often the main reason of why I may or may not purchase a specific smartphone. On a normal day of using the Finney (emails, calls, social media and occasional game/video) the battery would last me an average of two full days.
The device has a 3,260mAh battery cell and Quick Charge 4.0 to recharge fully in more or less two hours, or 50-percent in approximately 30 minutes.
The Finney mounts single lense 12-megapixel camera, with a ƒ/1.8 aperture, 4um pixel size for low light, optical image stabilization and can shoot in HDR. Videos are shot in 4k and the device does a fantastic job at stabilising the footage.
The camera is very simple and does a great job at taking pictures, there are no “fun” features nor does it have any filters – additionally having one camera means that the device will not have portrait/live focus modes.
The images are stored directly in the Google Photos application, meaning that your pictures are immediately safely stored online.
The Finney is without a shadow of a doubt a great device, it can compete with all of the best mainstream devices as its performance is outstanding. However, if you are buying this device is it mainly because of its cryptocurrency features; not to game or take selfies at parties.
I can’t stress enough how well the Sirin Labs team has accomplished their goal. They are the first within the industry to successfully make the process of safely storing cryptocurrencies in a cold storage wallet, and most importantly make it easy for everyone – through your mobile phone!
The device is not cheap, it is currently selling for $1000, but if you are a cryptocurrency enthusiast and you need to actively access and store your funds this phone is worth every penny.
You will be able to see the website through this link: shop.sirinlabs.com
I was not paid in order to write this review.