The Unbundling of Wallets

Originally published on Twitter on June 30, 2022

I firmly believe we won’t all just be using MetaMask in a few years. Let me explain why wallets are about to unbundle. 

We’re seeing the most varied distribution of user personas in crypto’s history. With each innovation cycle, more and more people were brought into the ecosystem. While all these groups overlap, they come with very different preferences. 

2009 (the OGs) attracted people interested in stateless money/innovative P2P computing. 2014 brought in high caliber software developers excited about the new design space of smart contracts. 

2017 brought in tech-savvy finance people eager to experiment with DeFi. And the latest wave attracted more retail users buying their first and only NFT: online creators, digital artists, and gamers. 

All of these groups interface with entirely different types of applications. A logical extension is that they seek different things out of their primary, interoperable web3 UI, which is their wallet. 

For example, an NFT trader likely wants a wallet that displays their collection and tracks floor prices. A degen likely wants to see the health of their leverage positions across different protocols, the status of their staking APYs, etc.

And mass consumers interested in experimenting with web3 social likely want a sleek, clean UI with nothing I mentioned above to cloud their UX; it will also probably be educational. Mass retail also wants separate wallets to not share personal financial data. 

This trend largely mimics what happened to marketplace businesses in the early 2000s. Craigslist focused on initial discovery for online marketplaces to find product-market fit, then quickly saw new competitors offering more curated, verticalized experiences eat its market share. 

While not a 1:1 analogy, the trend is clear: when a wider base of users seek a very specific product experience, they have historically gone to a UI matching that particular need. Why would wallets be any different? 

If you’re building a more verticalized wallet and want to chat, reach out — I look forward to hearing from you. 


Originally published on Twitter on June 30, 2022