There's good news for Bitcoin Cash users as Trezor announces upcoming support for cashaddr, a BCH address format. The announcement is a significant development for Bitcoin Cash as support from the most popular hardware wallet could spell new money coming into the market, or at least increased security for those wishing to safeguard their investment carefully.
Cashaddr was developed as a way of distinguishing between Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin Core addresses, and while it was supposedly expensive to implement the change, the move has paved the way for further innovations.
Pavol Rusnack of Satoshi Labs is often credited with the change, saying "I suggest to change the address version to something different, so it is obvious the address is a Bitcoin Cash address. (It can start with C for example). Don’t forget to change also address version for P2SH!”
Bitcoin Cash developer Amaury Séchet responded saying "Agreed. I have a plan to change the address format. Changing the address format is expensive, so I would like to investigate various other option than just changing the prefix before settling on something. I would also have to convince other in the space that this is a good address format." This would eventually manifest as cashaddr.
In his Github post, cashaddr dev Hoenicke stated:
“This needs to be done outside the firmware for cashaddr support. Webwallet: compute cashaddr addresses from xpub. Note that only the last step from hashed public key to address needs to be changed. The webwallet checks that the address the Trezor returns is as expected. This check should also allow 1.. addresses so that it works with older firmware (so we don’t have to deploy both at the same time); allow cashaddr as send to address. The firmware supports both and both use SPENDADDRESS. The only difference is the confirmation message given to the user; the transaction format did not change at all.”
Hoenicke clarifies that the change will not affect the means of transaction and handles the issues such as the misleading address keys once and for all. Trezor follows Coinbase and Bitpay in integrating cashaddr, helping to develop community consensus and raise the profile of the altcoin. There is currently no timeline at the moment, so users waiting to store their BCH will have to make do with the beta wallet for now before entering true cold storage.
Featured image from Trezor.