HTC has revealed a tantalizing detail, though: the phone will double as a full hub. This means that the device can act as one of the distributed points that validate and forward transactions on the Bitcoin block chain. It won't be able to my any cryptocurrency, but Phil Chen, Decentralized Chief Officer at HTC, told Engadget that it has "partners to announce that will offer hash prices to do so." HTC hopes that the phone will appeal to people who are curious about crypto competition and want to support public block chains.
"There is a lack of full nodes in the network," Chen explains. "By taking a more long-term, ecosystem perspective as a unit manufacturer, we believe we can help grow this network for application developers, which in turn will benefit anyone using Bitcoin. There is a sense of being the brother's keeper here to run a whole node. "
The Bitcoin ledger is currently over 200 GB. HTC says it will be possible to store a smaller "cropped version" on the phone itself. The complete blockchain, meanwhile, must be stored on a separate SD card. The original Exodus will have the same node functionality "around the same time", according to Chen, but will also require a dedicated SD card to host full blockchain and run necessary software. The node function will probably take a wave on both the performance of Exodus 1
"There are a number of different design elements that need to be considered in order to handle this," he added.
The Exodus 1s, as its predecessor, will support HTC's Zion wallet app. The software can be used to store, send, and request a variety of cryptographic baskets, including Bitcoin, Ether and Litecoin, as well as the Ethereum-based ERC-20 and ERC 721 tokens. Today, HTC Zion releases Vault SDK on GitHub so developers can think and hopefully improve the software. "We understand that it takes a society to secure strength and security, so it's important for the Exodus team that society has the best tools available to them," the company said.
The question is, of course, whether there is a market for crypto-centric units. HTC is in a tough place financially, and it's hard to imagine that Exodus 1 or 1s are putting their business around.