Could Huawei be building a blockchain-ready smartphone with Sirin Labs?

China's largest technology company Huawei is considering building a brand-new mobile phone which will be able to work with applications based on blockchain technology

David Nurieli
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According to Bloomberg,  citing two sources, the company has been in talks, with Israel’s Sirin Labs to license its operating system SIRIN OS to work alongside Android, which is compatible with blockchain-based applications.  

The talks are ongoing, and no documents have been signed yet, the sources said, speaking on condition of anonymity. Officials from Huawei and Sirin Labs have been meeting for two months.

A caption under a February 28 picture on Sirin Labs’ Telegram chat group shows:

“Amazing meeting just concluded between Sirin Labs and Huawei. Among other things discussed was the possibility of cooperating together to bring blockchain technology to the masses in a secure way.” 

Sirin Labs also seemingly confirmed Bloomberg's story, by posting it on the company's official Twitter account.

If the rumours are real, Huawei would be one of the first major smartphone companies to integrate their smartphones with blockchain technology. This would certainly allow the technology to be closer to the masses, something that could be potentially beneficial to cryptocurrencies.

Sirin Labs is a tech startup, focused on building products utilising blockchain tech. The company announced its own phone last year, called the 'Finney,' which uses the technology to supposedly increase security. The phone can also store cryptocurrency like Ethereum, with a built-in 'cold-storage' wallet. Sirin Labs has yet to ship Finney to pre-order customers, but that apparently isn't stopping the company from partnering with Huawei.

Last month, Sirin Labs partnered with Emurgo to promote the Cardano blockchain ecosystem.

Even with Huawei backing it, it doesn't seem like a blockchain-powered phone would be appealing to the masses. Sirin Labs says over 25,000 pre-orders were placed for its Finney phone, but the cost for a pre-order is significantly lower than the expected MSRP of $999 (with backers expected to pay the remaining price when the phone is ready to ship).

As for Huawei, it is one of the largest smartphone manufacturers. The company also offers telecom equipment, cloud computing, and cybersecurity solutions. Currently, it is the largest telecom equipment manufacturer worldwide after surpassing Ericsson in 2012.