BitBox02 is a Swiss-made hardware wallet of Shift Crypto company that happens to be a great alternative to those cold storage wallets that we already know, such as TREZOR and Ledger Nano X.
This wallet is the next generation of hardware wallets of Shift Crypto, going after BitBox01. Shift Cryptosecurity is well-known for its wallets and the Android app for them: the new wallet has a minimalistic design and support for multiple assets, which makes it an excellent choice for any one of us.
In this BitBox02 Review, we will tell you about our own experience of working with this hardware wallet and share some information about its details.
Our First Experience With BitBox02
The BitBox02 has two versions: a Multi and Bitcoin-only device that can be bought for nearly 140 USD, which makes this wallet look really great in comparison with other hardware wallet manufacturers, such as TREZOR and Ledger Nano X.
Even at this stage, BitBox02 provides you with a great deal of security from external attacks: the external box will have a vacuum-sealed plastic bag, the company’s logo stickers will be placed on the sides of the package, and as long as no air is coming out of it, your pack is safe. In addition, the Swiss company takes extra measures to prevent any supply chain attacks so that your order would be securely delivered.
Always check that your plastic bag package is well sealed before opening it, and do not start to manage device and other gadgets inside of it if it is not.
When opening the package of BitBox02 made by Swiss firm Shift Cryptosecurity, you will find a Bitbox02 hardware wallet itself, a backup MicroSD card, a USB-C adapter, and a USB-C extension cable. In addition, you will see a manual, some free BitBox stickers, and free string attachments laying in the box.
USB-C adapter and USB-C extension cable are definitely great features of this package, as this will let you easily connect your Bitcoin wallet (or any other) to computers or mobile phones that have a USB-C port, but just in case you would need another adapter, Shift Cryptosecurity made sure to also provide you with a USB-A adapter and USB-A extension cable.
After opening the package you will not be able to use BitBox02 straight away, there are some additional steps that you would need to make, all of which we will further describe in our BitBox02 review.
BitBox02 vs. Other Hardware Wallets
In general, BitBox02 gives you an impression of a tool that managed to mix in itself the greatest features of other hardware wallets, such as Trezor, Ledger, and Coldcard.
This cryptocurrency hardware wallet provides you with open-source transparency of Trezor together with the physical security for private keys of Coldcard: the secure chip of BitBox02 is similar to the one of Coldcard, but its work is much faster, as the microcontroller chip is different.
The initial setup process of this cryptocurrency hardware wallet can be done within a few minutes (which is similar to the one of Ledger): the additional security measures despite the password are a MicroSD card and a seed phrase, and while the latter is not obligatory for protection from brute force attacks, the former is.
Together with a full Bitcoin node and Tor routing support, you can be sure of the safety of your transactions and any other procedures made with the help of the BitBox02 hardware wallet and its app.
In addition, the touch sensors of Bitbox02 are definitely the best one on the market: while providing you with a decent sensibility to make the setup process pleasant and fast, it still manages not to overdo its job in this area. This device’s sensors appear to be a great alternative for physical buttons.
So basically, by buying BitBox02 you will get the best features of all of the other most popular software wallets.
Setting up Process
First, download the BitBox App either for your computer or Android smartphone, as this will let you connect with your Bitcoin-only edition wallet, or Multi edition one when you will need it.
Second, plug in your hardware wallet into your BitBox device, be it a computer or a smartphone, and go through the steps provided for you by the BitBox app that supports your operating system: there you would need to download firmware and give a name to your hardware wallet or log in to an already existing one. Note that the app only accepts firmware signed by the Swiss company itself.
The process also includes creating your own password for the hardware wallet, which will later be used for accessing it: there are sensitive touch buttons on the side of the wallet that you will need to use for this purpose.
The company also allows you to use Universal Two Factor protection for some of your online accounts, such as Dropbox or Google.
And to set up a password, a lot of tapping will be required for this device screen: to type letters, you will need to choose one of the 3 columns and tap 3 times to establish a certain letter. For example, to tap the letter A you would need to make touch gestures on the left column three times, and to choose a letter B you would need to tap a left column once and a middle column twice.
This is done in order to confuse the hackers and do not let them see your fingerprints and guess the password of the device. Of course, it would be hard to adjust to this process at first, but it is not as hard as it sounds, and it is definitely easier than the process of most hardware wallets on the market.
The third step would be to create a backup plan in case you would forget your password. With Bitbox02 Bitcoin only edition waller or Multi edition one, a Micro SD card is used for that purpose: simply insert it into your wallet’s card slot and this will let you securely log into it.
This part was quite surprising for us, as almost any hardware wallet will make us write a seed word or phrase for such situations, which often can be uncomfortable and forgotten together with the password.
However, for those users that still would like to create recovery words or a seed phrase, you can still do so later in the app. After you have created your 24-words seed phrase in the app, you also will be asked to do the same on the hardware wallet, just to make sure that everything is written correctly, but here you will not simply write it down, you will have to choose the correct ones from the list and in the right order.
Our tip for this step would be not to take a screenshot of your seed expression, write it down on the computer, or read it out loud: make all of the possible steps to protect your device.
It is now the Time to use the Device
After finishing with the previous part, you can finally navigate through the app, store cryptocurrencies, and make the transactions that you would like: the device supports Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ether, or any ERC-20 token. The app also allows its users to buy crypto directly from it, as Moonpay is available there.
Your balance could always be seen in the chosen cryptocurrency or in a fiat one. Another interesting function of this app is the possibility to download your history of transactions as an Excel file.
As for the transactions, this process always demands that you confirm your transfer via the device itself: to do that, wipe the surface to see the chosen address of the destination, check it for correctness, and confirm the transaction by holding your device from two sides of it.
Receiving the money is also quite an impressive process on this device: the technology of the hardware wallet generates 20 different receiving addresses from your public key, and when you are about to receive some money, you would need to choose one of them that will be used.
And to make sure that everything will go okay, click on the “Show and verify the full address on the device” and check that the information about your address there corresponds with the one that you have so that the possibility of fishing attacks would be tested.
In addition, you also will be quite surprised to find out that the BitBox app allows you to create a custom transaction fee: this function would be of particular importance to you when you would like to make a transaction when there is high traffic on your blockchain.
The number of cryptocurrencies that the BitBox02 multi-coin device support is quite limited, as it only supports Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin.
However, these BitBox wallets support quite a lot of ERC-20 tokens placed on the Ethereum blockchain, such as:
- USD Coin
- Basic Attention Token
- PAX Gold
- Wrapped Bitcoin
- Single Collateral DAI
These ones are placed on the hardware wallets and the BitBox app directly, but there are also some of the tokens that are supported not directly via MyEtherWallet
BitBox02 device also has five advanced features that you can use. The first one is the ability to make custom transaction fees, and as we have already covered, we will not stop on this point and move further.
The second function is coin control, which allows you to use UTXO pockets of your wallet when making transactions: what this feature does is create for you an opportunity to hide the amount of the money that you are transferring, so that the recipient would only know about the sum of one of your UTXO pockets, not about the sum that you are transferring or the amount that other pockets have.
The third feature is that of creating separate accounts with different address types. So, for example, your Bitcoins can be divided between SegWit and bech32 addresses, which can help you to decrease your fees. You can also keep different cryptos on different wallets of BitBox to increase your security.
As for the fourth function of Tor enabling, this one allows you to increase the financial privacy of your working process when accessing the device: for that, you would simply need to enter the Tor proxy address.
And the last but not least feature is definitely the hardest one, but at the same time, the most valuable one: it is an ability to connect to your own full node support, which basically tells BitBox02 to follow the “Do not trust, verify” rule.
However, in order for you to do that, you would need to connect with the Electrum server, write down in the app information about its port and host, and download the remote certificate: to check that is working, click on the “Check” button and then on the “Add” one and restart the BitBoxApp.
After making this BitBox02 review, we were quite surprised with the functioning of BitBox02 hardware wallets: the installation process was quick and easy, the invisible touch sensors were improved quite well, and the device could be inserted into the PC or smartphone without the need of any additional cords, as the box that you buy contains USB-A and USB-C support with its adapters.
But if for some reason you would need a cord, both USB-A and USB-C connector ones are provided in the package.
BitBox02 wallet and its app keep all of the Bitcoin address types together in one place, so that newcomers to the crypto world would not get confused with a variety of them. And with the help of the Coin Control function, you can also handle your UTXOs.
As for the protection, the wallet does not rely only on its secure chip and SD card protection of your cryptocurrency private keys: being an open-source software device, you also get the protection of your communication between the wallet and the computer, as it will always be encrypted. In addition, you now have an opportunity to roll a dice and increase the security of your seed expression by doing so.
The downside of this wallet would be its lack of different crypto and blockchain support, but the BitBox02 wallet provides you with a great variety of tokens, both directly and indirectly supported via MyEtherWallet.
All in all, we believe that BitBox02 is a great alternative for many other hardware wallets, as it provides you with relatively decent pricing and excellent functionality.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is BitBox02 safe?
Yes, and on many levels: you will start with a safe delivering process and hermitized packaging and will be able to go to secure chip security of your private key, Tor compatibility of the device, password and seed phrase creation, and MicroSD card protection.
In addition, UTXOs are also available on the BitBox02 device.
How does BitBox02 work?
Very simple: all you would need to do is to connect the device to your computer or smartphone, open the BitBoxApp, enter the password/SD card/seed phrase, and start the working process of your device.
All that goes after that depends on you and your needs.
What is the best hardware wallet?
For everyone, this answer will be different, but we can say for sure that the BitBox02 device is definitely one of the best, as it has the price close to the average one and provides the level of simplicity of use and yet the safety of its secure chip that could not be found on any other hardware wallet.
To find out more about the Bitbox02 device and its secure chips, please read our article above.