Robert Steinadler, a month ago

Linux Foundation Europe starts Open Wallet Foundation

This week is exciting when it comes down to announcing new foundations and looking at their plans. First Bosch and pledge $100 million to explore industrial applications of Web3 and AI. Yesterday, the Linux Foundation Europe announced to start of a new foundation for solely one purpose: Wallets.

What are the plans of the foundation, how is crypto involved and why is this topic more complex than one might think it is?

What really is a wallet?

Most of our dear readers might identify the term wallet with the one that is holding their cryptocurrencies. According to a report from the Linux Foundation, a wallet is a place where you put your stuff. And this can be a lot of different stuff: 

Tickets, NFTs, cryptos, Apple & Google Pay, passports, health data, and many more things are kept in digital wallets that are supposed to keep them safe. These things fall under three basic categories: Payments, access, and identification.

When we are looking at what the new foundation was founded for, we have to take all these things into account because they define what a wallet is. Crypto is also onboard, but it’s just a piece of the whole puzzle.

Interoperability is an important goal

The problem with all these different use cases is that they come with a lot of drawbacks for users. Limited or no interoperability is just one of them and the Open Wallet Foundation (OWF) is about to change that for good. It is too early to talk about a wallet stack, but the long-term goal is to promote research and development of best practices when it comes down to designing wallets.

The result of this work should be some sort of unified software engine that works with any device, any provider, and any currency worldwide. This is an ambitious goal and when looking at the fact that three different sectors must be considered, it becomes apparent that this is probably a longer mission.

It will be interesting to watch how the OWF is going to tackle all the issues that needed to be addressed according to their estimation. Privacy seems to be another big talking point since too many companies use their privilege and access customer data for their own purposes. When thinking about digital IDs or other use cases that involve sensitive data it seems to be necessary to protect user data with maximum effort.

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