Everything You Need to Know About The Ledger Blue

Cryptocurrencies may be the future of how we exchange money, but they come with new security concerns – nearly every week there is another high profile hack, and many more security breaches of users’ accounts that come in many forms, from malware and currency stealing viruses, to false landing pages meant to trick the user into sending money to a malicious party, to hacking.

Unlike traditional currencies, which you can put in a federally insured bank account, you are solely responsible for protecting your own cryptocurrency assets, which are uniquely vulnerable.

To safely use cryptocurrencies, you need a storage wallet that can protect you from hackers and fraud. In this series, we will cover various cryptocurrency wallets available. In this piece, we’re focusing on The Ledger Blue.

Ledger Blue

A premium secure wallet for your Bitcoin, Ethereum, and more

The Ledger Blue is the premier offering from the French company Ledger Wallet; they claim that the Ledger Blue is “the most advanced hardware security gear on the market.” It’s easy to see why they say that. The Ledger Blue is handheld, lightweight, provides excellent functionality, and a color touchscreen that makes operating it a breeze.

Key benefits of the Ledger Blue

  • Versatility – the Ledger Blue works with many cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin and Ether.
  • Ease of use – The Ledger Blue’s color touch screen makes navigating through applications and manual approval of cryptocurrency transactions simple.
  • Connectivity – With both USB and Bluetooth connectivity, the Ledger Blue works with any computer or smartphone.
  • Safety – Protection via a PIN number, manual confirmation before executing transactions, offline storage, and a secure recovery process to protect you in case you lose your pin. Protects from hackers, malware, and more.
  • Top end technology – The Ledger Blue is the product of over two years of research. Developed with power and flexibility in mind, the best –in-class technology inside of the Ledger Blue is built on the Blockchain Open Ledger (BOLOS) platform. The advanced operating system works seamlessly with numerous applications, which are quickly available via the dashboard on the device.
  • Color touchscreen – The Ledger Blue features a 3.5 inch, LED-backlit touchscreen with color display and anti-scratch glass housed in a sleek yet tough case. The color touchscreen makes it easy for you to use apps, and validate transactions through an intuitive display with a comparable ease of use to a smartphone.
  • Battery powered – A rechargeable 500mA LiPo battery enables the Ledger Blue to work with smartphones and computers without relying on an external power source.
  • Compatibility – The Ledger Blue works with Windows, Mac OS, Chrome OS, and Linux operating systems.

 

Downsides

At the moment, the Ledger Blue requires that you use Google Chrome or Chromium, and does not support other browsers.

How the Ledger Blue keeps your Bitcoins, Ether, and other currencies safe

With the Ledger Blue, you can confidently be your own, secure bank. You access the Ledger Blue via a four to eight digit PIN code, ensuring that you and only you can access your assets.

The Ledger Blue secures your cryptocurrencies safely offline on the device, using on a dual-chip architecture embedding a ST31 Secure Element and a STM32 microcontroller, to create a fully isolated environment, which means that your account information is stored completely on your device, and nowhere else. The firmware integrity of the Ledger Blue is guaranteed by cryptographic attestation.

Private keys are stored inside the device’s secure element, so they are never shared with Ledger or any third party, thus safeguarding your data from hacking. Both restoration of your master seed and initialization take place on the secure environment, which means your assets are never vulnerable to malware. Additionally, each application on the device is isolated, and they do not share information.

The Ledger Blue ensures transaction integrity with a “WYSIWYS” paradigm—What You See Is What You Sign. You manually confirm each transaction via the Ledger Blue, which provides proof of presence, and protects you from malware, viruses, and man in the middle attacks. Even if you connect your device to a computer infected with a cryptocurrency stealing virus, the WYSIWYS system will keep your assets safe.

Because all major crypto libraries are embedded in the Ledger Blue’s firmware, the wallet can support any type of blockchain, including:

  • Bitcoin (COLU, Counterparty support)
  • Ethereum (ETH/ETC), tokens & contracts support
  • All bitcoin clones (Litecoin, Dogecoin, Zcash)
  • Ripple
  • Monero (in development)
  • Tendermint (in development)
  • Hyperledger (in development)
  • Sidechains (Liquid) (in development)

 

Dedicated companion apps, and wide compatibility

The Ledger Blue runs dedicated companion applications to allow you to securely manage your cryptocurrency accounts. As more cryptocurrencies emerge, new applications are added. As of right now, the Ledger Blue is compatible with: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Fide U2F, DogeCoin, ZCash, Dash, Stratis, SSH, GPG, Ripple, Hello, Bitcoin Cash, Komodo, and Ethereum Classic.

The Ledger Blue operates with its own cryptocurrency wallet interfaces on your computer as well, through free Google Chrome applications called “Ledger Apps,” such as: Ledger Wallet Bitcoin, Ledger Wallet Ethereum, and Ledger Wallet Ripple.

You can also use other compatible software wallets, including Copay, Electrum, Mycelium, MyEtherWallet, GreenBits, and Bitgo.

Thanks to its modular architecture, the Ledger Blue runs multiple dedicated companion apps in full isolation on top of its firmware. The strong security model allows you to add new cryptocurrencies and apps to your device without risk of compromising the master seed.

How to operate your Ledger Blue

Ledger Wallet has a series of helpful walkthrough videos to guide you through configuring, managing, and troubleshooting your device. Here’s a brief overview of how to conduct the major functions of the device.

The Ledger Blue’s color touchscreen and interface make setup, and transactions very simple. First, open the Ledger Wallet app on your computer for the currency you’d like to use (such as Bitcoin, or Ethereum for example). Then, connect your device via USB. Open the corresponding app on the Ledger Blue.

The computer will recognize your device, and display your account information. Then, you enter in the transaction information on your computer, including recipient, and amount, and click “send.” The Ledger Blue then displays the details of your transaction on its touchscreen, and asks you to manually confirm it on the device. Once you give your physical confirmation, the Ledger Blue approves your transaction. Then you can safely remove the Ledger Blue from the computer.

When you first set up your Ledger Blue, it will randomly generate a list of twenty-four “recovery words,” which you can use to access your device if you lose your pin number, device, or need to import your accounts to another wallet. The Ledger Blue comes with a paper “recovery sheet” for you to write down your recovery words, which you should then keep in a secure location.

Specifications

  • Size
    • 97mm x 68mm x 10mm
      Weight: 90.0g
  • Compatibility
    • Windows (7+), Mac (10.9+), Linux or Chrome OS. Requires Google Chrome or Chromium, and one USB port to plug your Ledger Blue
  • Microcontrollers and Connector
    • Connector: USB Type Micro-B
      Certification level: CC EAL6+
      Chips: ST31G480 (secure) + STM32L476
  • Materials
    • Zamak (frame) and Plastic (case)
      Contains Neodymium magnets

 

Ledger Blue Price

The Ledger Blue is available for 229€ at www.ledgerwallet.com.

Summary

Ledger Wallet’s Ledger Blue is designed to be a premium solution for safely using cryptocurrencies. It delivers on that promise with a seamless interface controlled via the color touchscreen, excellent connectivity and versatility, and top-notch safeguards through isolation, and manual transaction confirmation.

If you’d like to read about Ledger Wallet’s Nano S wallet, check out the Ledger website here.

Videos

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