On March 21, TrustWallet became unavailable on the App Store. The project team stated on March 22 that the issue would be resolved as soon as possible. Trust Wallet assured users that their assets would be protected since crypto is stored on the blockchain and the app serves only as an interface to their digital assets. Users were asked temporarily not to update or reinstall the application. This did not affect Android users, however.
Many users were unnerved despite assurances. Some said they had deleted the crypto app from their iPhones and wondered how they were going to access it again, while others lost their crypto recovery phrases, and all feared losing their crypto holdings.
Founded by Six Days LLC, Trust Wallet was acquired by Binance, the largest cryptocurrency exchange, in 2018. This was announced on Binance’s official blog in 2018.
Trust Wallet lets users accept and send cryptocurrency payments, buy coins through a range of service partners, store NFT tokens, and connect to various decentralized platforms.
However, access to decentralized applications is only available through the wallet’s browser, and only on Android devices. In order to comply with Apple’s App Store Guidelines and to continue offering services on iOS, this functionality had to be removed from the app’s iOS version in 2021. Owners of iPhones can use the WalletConnect feature to access NFT and DeFi sites.
Trust Wallet Trapped in Apple’s Vice-Like Grip on iOS Apps
Although the app’s sudden disappearance hasn’t been officially explained, experts say it is again likely due to a violation of the App Store policies, specifically those pertaining to third-party payments. As Trust Wallet’s website states, the app doesn’t sell crypto, and users are redirected to a third-party provider – which indeed seems to be the case.
Apple’s hegemonic behavior has affected a lot of services. Unless you’re a country-scale regulator, it’s very hard to stand up to such a giant. This was the case with the Dutch regulator requiring Apple to follow an antitrust order related to dating apps in the Netherlands.
In response, Apple said that it would keep a 27% commission on the concessions and claimed “audit rights” on the sales. Also, it said that developers had to choose between recommending payment systems outside of their apps or using third-party payment systems.
Rather than be limited to one or the other, the Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) demanded that devs should be able to do both. This proposal was not considered “serious” by the Dutch regulators, and fines of $5.5 million were continued for nine consecutive weeks, totaling $49.7 million.
The Dutch antitrust watchdog said Apple submitted new proposals to resolve the dispute. It is evaluating whether or not those proposals are sufficient.
Choosing Better Alternatives
It remains unclear whether Trust Wallet and Binance will take a similar stand against Apple or will simply comply with refusing to accept third-party payments. However, one thing is certain: new iOS users will not be able to download it.
The best tip for anyone scratching their heads and wondering which wallet to use instead, or who is wary that this may befall another wallet they use, is to seek out wallet apps that aren’t at risk of being removed from the App Store.
How can we be sure of that? In short, a wallet should not contain a third-party payment system and all functionality related to payments and crypto exchanges should be provided by the wallet developer.
A good alternative solution that outperforms Trust Wallet in terms of functionality and safety is NOW Wallet, a crypto wallet developed by the non-custodial crypto exchange platform ChangeNOW. With NOW Wallet, users can store and exchange about 400 cryptocurrencies conveniently on the move. The wallet also supports about 60 fiat currencies and NFTs. Since it is a non-custodial wallet, you have complete control over your private keys and funds.
It is also worth checking out Crypto.com DeFi Wallet, which supports 100+ coins and allows users to send crypto at their preferred confirmation speed and the network fee.