A Software Researcher Discovers a Secret Cryptocurrency Wallet in Microsoft Edge Browser – What’s Going On?

It appears that Microsoft has been quietly testing a noncustodial cryptocurrency wallet in its Edge browser for some time now.

According to screenshots shared by software researcher Albacore, Microsoft is piloting a built-in custodial cryptocurrency wallet that can be used for cryptocurrency payments or as a gateway for Decentralized Finance (DeFi) and Web3 applications.

The published screenshots also show the user interface of the digital currency wallet, along with a decentralized browser application and top news service. The wallet also allows the purchase of digital currencies through the Coinbase and MoonPay platforms.

And Microsoft says in its explanation of the wallet settings: “This is a wallet that does not require guardianship, which means that it allows the user to have full control of his money. We – at Microsoft – will not be able to access the user’s password and recovery key, and the wallet is integrated into the Edge browser, which It is easy to use without the need to install any additional software.

Although the meta pages do not indicate the cryptocurrencies supported by the wallet, one of the screenshots shows that the option to add the desired cryptocurrencies will be available to the user.

Screenshots further indicate that users will also be able to browse and purchase non-fungible tokens (NFTs) across major digital stores using the wallet. The page about NFTs says: “You can browse different stores to purchase your first non-fungible token and build your collection from those tokens. We will curate your collection of NFTs here.”
It is noteworthy that Microsoft has never officially announced any project related to the wallet, but this experience comes as part of the company’s efforts to engage in the world of digital currencies in several ways, especially the field of the virtual world (metaverse), in which the technology giant did not hide its interest. his own.

Ironically, Microsoft recently discontinued the Industrial Metaverse Core team, a four-month-old project aimed at encouraging the use of the metaverse in industrial environments. The company also laid off the employees working on the project, which number about 100 people.
More browsers offer cryptocurrency wallets as cryptocurrency adoption increases

Microsoft Edge wasn’t the first web browser to include a cryptocurrency wallet, as adoption of cryptocurrencies has increased, a number of other major web browsers have recently started supporting built-in cryptocurrency wallets.

For example, the Opera browser has supported cryptocurrencies since 2018, when it initially introduced the feature to its mobile app before expanding it to its desktop app in 2019. Recently, the browser has boosted its activity in the cryptocurrency space by adding Browser wallet support for several newer blockchains, including Bitcoin-BTC, Solana-SOL, Polygon-MATIC, and Ronin-RON.

Similarly, the Brave browser has its own cryptocurrency wallet known as the Brave Wallet built into it since November 2021. The wallet supports all EVM and Layer 2 compatible blockchains with all ERC-20 and ERC-721-compliant cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs). In January of last year, the browser said it had surpassed 50 million monthly active users, in addition to more than 8 million users earning BAT rewards, which puts Brave browser second only to Opera in terms of overall popularity. But considering that the browser was launched in 2017, it is clear that it has seen a huge growth in the number of users over the recent years.

Finally, users of other browsers such as Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome can install third-party cryptocurrency wallets such as Metamask in order to be able to use Web3 applications.

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