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Telegram has embraced a custodial approach for its integrated crypto wallet service, Wallet, to simplify the entry process for newcomers to the cryptocurrency space. This decision was articulated by Wallet’s COO, Halil Mirakhmed.

“To bring the masses into the crypto fold, the self-custody method proves to be incredibly complex,” stated Mirakhmed in a conversation with Cointelegraph on Monday.

He highlighted the difficulties new users face in managing and securely storing seed phrases for non-custodial wallets, which can be a daunting task for those not previously exposed to cryptocurrencies.

By adopting a custodial model, Telegram has significantly streamlined the onboarding experience. “It becomes very simple,” noted the Wallet COO. Users would only need the contact information of the recipient within Telegram to transfer funds, bypassing the need to handle public blockchain keys.

Non-custodial wallets like Ethereum’s MetaMask demand that users personally safeguard their seed phrases. If these are lost, the funds in the wallet are irretrievably gone.

Conversely, custodial services often provide fund recovery options even if passwords are misplaced, making them a potentially less formidable option for those new to crypto.

Integration into Telegram’s settings on the horizon

Previously, setting up Wallet was a prerequisite for its visibility within the Telegram app. However, starting in November, Wallet will be an intrinsic part of the app’s settings accessible to all users.

A comprehensive introduction of Wallet is set to kick off in November, focusing initially on specific countries in Africa and Latin America, according to Mirakhmed.

Subsequently, the service will extend to users in regions including the Middle East, South East Asia, Central Asia, and Eastern Europe. This expansion will enable Telegram users to purchase, sell, and send various cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin (BTC), Tether (USDT), and The Open Network’s native TON token.

This year in July, the Wallet team facilitated merchants to accept payments for goods directly through Telegram using BTC or USDT.

Currently, Wallet boasts approximately 2 million users, a figure modest in comparison to the expansive user base of Telegram, which exceeds 700 million.