Foundation Devices Launches Preorders for Passport and Raises Pre-Seed Round
In late July, we introduced Passport – a new Bitcoin hardware wallet that is more elegant, ultra-secure, and open source. Today, Foundation Devices is excited to announce that:
- Passport is now available to preorder, with a Founder’s Edition limited to 1000 units.
- Foundation Devices has raised a pre-seed funding round from notable investors.
Foundation Devices is building the open source hardware foundation for Bitcoin and the sovereign Internet, starting with a hardware wallet called Passport. We intend Passport to appeal to a broad audience of Bitcoiners – whether you are an expert user accustomed to hardware wallets or a new user currently storing your coins on an exchange.
Passport provides a radically simplified, zen-like user experience. Foundation Devices is working hard to eliminate the hardware wallet learning curve with a streamlined setup process, intuitive interface, and familiar navigation.
With numerous high-quality multisig software wallets entering the market, it is more important than ever that we have a hardware wallet that is easy to use and welcoming to new users. Passport is our attempt to build the “iPod” of hardware wallets.
Passport is priced at $299 and includes 2x industrial grade microSD cards, 2x AAA batteries, and free shipping within the USA. Founder’s Edition is limited to 1000 units and includes an exclusive back cover design, special packaging, and a surprise gift.
Our official estimated shipment date for Passport is March 31, 2021 – but we are aiming to deliver Passport in time for the December holidays. Foundation Devices has already placed orders for long-lead time components and will finish ordering all components in the next several days. Due to COVID’s continuous impacts on global supply chains, we have chosen to be more conservative.
Please note that this is not crowdfunding – Foundation Devices already has the funds required to pay for the full production of Founder’s Edition devices. If you change your mind before Passport ships, cancel your order at any time and receive a full refund. If you stack too many sats and overdraw your bank account, we will do our best to refund you same-day! (Yes, this actually happened.)
To ensure your privacy, Foundation Devices self-hosts our website and checkout flow using WordPress and WooCommerce. Payments by credit card occur via Stripe and payments by Bitcoin occur via our self-hosted BTCPay server. We are especially proud of our beautiful BTCPay checkout design; thank you @artdesignbySF for your great work.
Passport will be the only hardware wallet on the market – and one of the only consumer hardware devices in existence – that meets the definition of Open Source Hardware according to the Open Source Hardware Association (OSHWA).
Passport’s hardware designs will be open under CERN-OHL-S v2 and firmware under GPLv3. While other hardware wallets have open source firmware, none include hardware designs that are legally considered open source. They (1) omit design files, (2) use inappropriate licenses like GPL or Creative Commons, (3) restrict commercial use, and/or (4) lack detailed component documentation, specifically in the Bill of Materials (“BOM”).
We are a corporate sponsor of OSHWA and will be submitting Passport for official certification. All future hardware that Foundation Devices makes will be open sourced under the appropriate licenses and certified by OSHWA.
We will be publicly posting our hardware and firmware to Github later this Fall, after completing validation of our next round of prototypes.
Assembled in the USA
Foundation Devices believes in the importance of local manufacturing and more robust global supply chains. Most of today’s devices are assembled in China, a communist regime that heavily censors the Internet, surveils its citizens, and seeks to undermine citizens’ privacy and sovereignty. This creates numerous geopolitical and security issues, especially with the rise of Bitcoin. Our devices will soon be safeguarding trillions of dollars of value – it is imperative that we trust our hardware manufacturers.
We therefore chose to assemble Passport locally, in the USA, and purchase all of our components from American companies and distributors. While many components still originate from Asia, the critical parts – such as the screen, processor, secure element, and camera – all originate from highly reputable suppliers. And circuit board assembly, device assembly, provisioning, and testing all take place in the USA. The Foundation Devices team will be on-the-ground at the factory during production.
To our knowledge, Passport is the only hardware wallet assembled in the USA. For advanced users, it may be prudent to add Passport to your multisig setup in order to defend against potential supply chain vulnerabilities.
We’ve been hard at work over the last five months designing Passport, prototyping, and preparing for production. Here’s an overview of our progress to-date:
We completed the design of the enclosure and are currently prototyping via 3D printing. We have placed orders for long-lead time enclosure components, including the keypad assembly and copper-plated zinc alloy casted part.
We completed design of the circuit boards and have completed two prototype revisions. We will be ordering our third revision of prototype boards in the next several days. Novel features include:
- Camera for scanning QR codes.
- AAA battery power.
- Avalanche noise source, an open source true random number generator that uses standard components (no black-box silicon).
- Sharp Memory LCD, which has circuitry etched directly into glass for easy visual inspection, and unlike most displays includes no black-box silicon.
We forked Coldcard’s open source firmware (licensed as GPLv3) and have made numerous changes. We anticipate finishing v1 firmware by end of November. We intend to contribute relevant improvements back to Coldcard. Changes include:
- A new UI with simple navigation via a navpad and dedicated select buttons.
- Changes to all copy and radical simplification of menu structure.
- Ability to scan QR codes and transmit PSBTs via QR codes.
- Code reorganization to comply with Micropython best practices.
- Implemented new device drivers for Passport components including camera, screen and keypad.
- New keypad controller to allow for more advanced input, such as long-presses.
- Ultra-fast keypad responsiveness.
We created a font converter to generate python code from BDF fonts. This can be seen on our Github.
Foundation Devices recently raised a pre-seed round to fund development and production of Passport. Thank you to our investors for enabling us to build a hardware company that believes in open source, sovereignty, and privacy.
Learn more about Passport and preorder your Founder’s Edition below, limited to 1000 units!
Preorder Passport Batch 2 today at a special price, limited to 2500 units!