Dash users seeking to ensure that their funds are absolutely protected will look to cold storage options, and hardware wallets are the perfect ironclad storage method paired with maximum usability. The Ledger Nano S is one of the prominent hardware wallets that features Dash support. With its small design resembling a USB stick, the Nano S is nonetheless quite useful and powerful as a storage tool.
Device The device setup for the Nano S is relatively streamlined. Users are prompted to set up a pin and write down the backup seed, and are required to confirm both (pin by re-entering, seed by entering a couple words picked at random). Nothing too crazy that threw me for a loop.
Apps The apps setup was a little bit of a different story. While starting a Bitcoin wallet is as simple as installing the app, and Ethereum is just as simple minus the Ethereum/Ethereum Classic prompt every time the app is loaded, starting the Dash wallet was a little confusing. First, the user must install the Bitcoin wallet. Second, the app manager. Third, the user must open the app manager and install the Dash wallet. Finally, in order to use Dash, the user must select “Dash” on the device, but open the Bitcoin wallet app. Once committed to force of habit this is very simple, however for a first-time user, even when following the instructions in detail, this can be a frustrating experience.
Usability The Ledger Nano S ranks high in usability, with simple, easy-to-use apps paired with simple device prompts. Past the initial setup phase I never once had to pause to figure out how to do something. The only caveat being the illogical startup method for Dash and other Bitcoin fork wallets as explained in setup above.
Design The device design is very sleek and minimalist, but attractive and professional. The app design is less bare-bones and more attractive, resembling a typical banking app.
The Ledger Nano S includes functionality for a variety of coins in addition to Dash, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, Ripple, Litecoin, Dogecoin, and Zcash. These are all easily accessible from within the wallet after launching the requisite Chrome apps.
Ledger’s support is very professional and robust, with a detailed series of support articles on every issue and product, as well as an easily accessible contact form. In my particular case, the Nano S was not recognized because I run Linux Ubuntu. Ledger had a detailed support article instructing me step-by-step how to create a permissions file to allow the Nano S to function, along with a few backup options in case that didn’t work. As one of the worries as a new Linux user is compatibility, especially with relatively niche programs and devices, having strong Linux support from Ledger is a good sign.
Pros: Sleek, attractive, easy to use, and with great support, even for Linux users.
Cons: Confusing and frustrating setup and initial use for Dash users.