In this interview, Derek, Co-founder of VESPR Wallet, discusses the development of their Cardano wallet. VESPR aims to address the shortcomings of existing wallets with a focus on simplicity and user-friendly design, catering to both newcomers and experienced users.
The interview highlights VESPR's agile approach, operating without a fixed roadmap to adapt to evolving trends and user feedback. Future plans include launching a desktop version and prioritizing hardware wallet support.
Partnerships with organizations like 21ADA Stakepool, DexHunter, Uphold, DripDropz, and HOSKY Token are mentioned, adding collaborative features to VESPR. This interview presents VESPR Wallet as a solution emphasizing practicality and usability in the Cardano ecosystem. Let's right dive in!
Hello, kindly provide an introduction and share your role in the development of the VESPR Wallet?
My name is Derek. I am Head of UI/UX Design, Product, Marketing and Co-Founder of VESPR Wallet.
Hey, Derek, happy to connect today and learn more about the VESPR Cardano Wallet. Can you tell us more about the wallet and the problem you are trying to solve?
Absolutely. VESPR Wallet is a non-custodial mobile-based (and soon to launch on desktop) wallet application for the Cardano blockchain. With VESPR Wallet, we've attempted, in our current capacity, to offer the best, fastest, easiest, most-intuitive, and most-secure blockchain wallet experience not only on Cardano, but to the wider crypto scope in general. Our primary goal is to simplify the management of your Cardano tokens and NFTs while adhering to the best security and privacy practices of top companies. Non-custodial wallets, at the end of the day, are the portal into a blockchain ecosystem. They are the connection between people and web3, and they are responsible for fostering positive impressions for any blockchain ecosystem.
We recognize that responsibility, and we take that responsibility very seriously.
Why did you choose to develop a light wallet for Cardano?
We chose to develop a light wallet for Cardano because we noticed a significant gap in quality in the market. We wanted to not only improve the current Cardano UX but also to facilitate the onboarding of newcomers to the ecosystem.
Prior to VESPR, I personally thought the wallet experience on Cardano was underwhelming. The existing wallets on Cardano were complex and lacked the appeal to draw in those outside the community. This was a missed opportunity in regards to broader adoption/growth. The poor experience made it not only frustrating/confusing for users but also cast a shadow over the Cardano community's reputation. We wanted to change that narrative.
Our vision in the beginning was simple: to create a wallet that people would be proud to use, a wallet that would elevate the Cardano experience and serve as an extremely accessible gateway for those new to Cardano and/or the blockchain space. In making the wallet experience more inviting and more premium-feeling, we could expand the reach and influence of Cardano itself.
Going forward, how will VESPR make an impact in the crypto space or on the world?
We want to empower people. We're not just offering a wallet; we're enabling people to take control of their finances at the end of the day. Moveover, allowing people to have full, uncensored access to a suite of financial tools (Cardano dApps) they can use at their disposal is a very powerful thing.
Which accomplishments are you most proud of so far?
Honestly, we’re just proud that people love using the wallet. There’s been quite a lot of positive feedback from the community. That to us is everything really.
For me personally is how much everyone appreciates how sleek and intuitive the app is. Every aspect of VESPR – from the placement of elements and UX flows to the color of the text – has been meticulously engineered. Alex and I have poured immense time, thought and care into every detail. It's incredibly gratifying, and yes, a bit of an ego boost, to see our hard work recognized and appreciated by people. Their praise and willingness to spread the word about VESPR is the highest form of validation for our efforts and a clear indicator of our success in creating a product that resonates deeply with our user base, especially when people go out of their own way to do so.
What distinguishes VESPR Wallet from other light wallets? What benefits does it offer that others don't
Short answer: the experience.
Our mission is to make VESPR so incredibly easy and so intuitive that even those new to Cardano and crypto can pick it up and figure it out all on their own. We understand that for many, and for members of my own family even, the depth of crypto can be a little too abstract to grasp quickly. Sometimes they may even have some negative preconceptions or “misguided” notions about crypto. Our goal is to shift that perception by designing an app that is simple, easy to understand, yet sophisticated, sleek and mature. We avoid childish or patronizing design elements as well as technical jargon, focusing instead on a more respectful and engaging approach. That, in essence, is what makes this wallet special.
Does VESPR have a roadmap? If so, please share it with us and explain what you have achieved so far.
VESPR operates without a traditional roadmap. Having the flexibility and agility to deliver results without being confined to any schedule is pretty crucial as a startup operating in such an unpredictable and rapidly changing environment such as crypto, specifically Cardano. We have the freedom to adapt quickly to new developments from other teams in the community whether it be open-source standards or custom-tailored solutions, and we can address any user feedback, constructive criticisms or issues users may run into.
This dynamic way of operating has allowed us to deliver features that truly resonate with our users' needs, rather than being locked into predetermined plans.
What does the future hold for VESPR? For example, what new developments or features should we expect in the next 6 to 12 months, and what will this mean for the overall project?
We want to bring the same premium experience over to the desktop users of Cardano so we’re currently developing a desktop extension version of the wallet. After that, the plan is to put our focus on prioritizing hardware wallet support. There’s for sure a lot more planned but we won’t spoil it, yet.
Which partnerships have you engaged so far, and which ones are the most impactful?
We've got a pretty cool lineup of partnerships at VESPR, each bringing something unique to the table. Our partnerships include 21ADA Stakepool, DexHunter, Uphold, DripDropz, Cardano Foundation, and HOSKY Token.
For example, the HOSKY partnership is a real game-changer. We developed the "Proof of Onboarding (P.O.O)" protocol, making it super easy and fun to onboard folks to Cardano at live events. Just download VESPR, tap to create a wallet (you can save the seed phrase post wallet creation on VESPR), scan a QR code, then boom. You get a little starter pack of Cardano tokens that you can use to explore the app and Cardano ecosystem.
DexHunter provides the backend infrastructure for our "Swaps" feature. They handle the heavy lifting, aggregating all Cardano DEXes and even splitting orders to give users the best exchange rates across all the DEXes and even possibly saving you money on your order.
Uphold is our official onramp partner for buying ADA with fiat. The integration into VESPR means you can buy ADA with your credit card and have it sent straight to your wallet. It's seamless, clean, and cuts out the hassle of dealing with exchanges. With 21ADA, we wanted a super simple, quick-and-dirty way to get people to stake their ADA -- to a point where they don’t have to think, they just press a button and you start earning rewards. We chose 21ADA because they are just awesome people.
Tell us about your team. Who are the people behind VESPR Wallet?
We are a very small, but very agile team. 3 people total making us very lean and flexible. We are 100% bootstrapped. No VCs, no investors, and no token. We’ve been self-funded ever since we started and it’s been almost 2 years since.
Alex: (Founder, CEO) and Head of Development of VESPR Wallet, is in charge of all technical aspects of VESPR. The guy is a powerhouse genius. He has over 6 years of experience in developing safety-critical mobile applications for major financial institutions like American Express, Virgin Money, Tesco Bank just to name a few. https://twitter.com/alex_vespr,
There’s Andy: another Co-Founder, Head of Business Operations and Strategy. Andy is a business operations/strategy mogul with a background in Healthcare Administration. He keeps the project on track, ensuring we hit our goals on time and within budget. His experience in operations, quality management and data analysis is invaluable, and that’s an understatement. https://twitter.com/andy_vespr,
Lastly, there’s me, Derek: a Co-Founder, Head of UI/UX design, Head of Product and Head of Marketing. I’m in charge of everything design related, feature development prioritization, managing development cycles, and spearheading our marketing efforts. https://twitter.com/rokindo_,
We also occasionally hire outside resources to help develop parts of the app.