HTC’s blockchain phone has been three years in the making and it all came from the mind of Phil Chen, co-founder of the company’s Vive VR operation. And once the Bitcoin price surge kicked off late in 2016, Chen’s idea had gotten attention. By this year, developers started writing code.
“Come March and April, it became clear that somebody needed to run this thing,” Chen told The Verge.
He soon added on chief decentralized officer to his job title roster and went public with Exodus in May of this year. Envisioned with this phone was a pathway to store decentralized currency of all sorts, run decentralized applications and pass through decentralized internet traffic, all with a blockchain comprised of other Exodus phone “nodes.”
Chen is looking to round up any of the 30 million cryptocurrency traders in the hopes that they will participate in this high-risk experiment. Worse yet, even with blockchain technology growing in China, regulations are coming into place that may clamp tight on Exodus’s entry into the market. It’s an especially tender time for HTC as it fired 1,500 engineers last week and reported a 68 percent year-to-year drop in revenues for the month of June.
So, what will HTC do to sweeten the pot for anyone coming into Exodus, especially as Sirin Labs has its own blockchain smartphone, Finney? Well, for starters, the company will announce a final price late this quarter and will likely price comparably to the Finney’s $1,000 tag. It will also go into partnership with CryptoKitties to feature its blockchain-based pet care and breeding game.
But overall, Phil Chen hopes to rope in gamers in general to try out a blockchain phone.
“Gaming is the most approachable thing on mobile, for the non-crypto crowd.”