Magic Eden sees a crypto future that spans multiple blockchains—and is launching its crypto wallet browser extension in closed beta to support that aim, the firm behind the NFT marketplace announced Monday.

“We believe in a multi-chain world for NFTs,” Magic Eden CEO and co-founder Jack Lu told Decrypt in an interview. 

“Up until today, for a user to really experience all the different products and features and great content that we have on every chain, they effectively have to download three wallets,” Lu said of the current challenges plaguing the wallet space that have led to user fragmentation on Magic Eden.

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The marketplace’s crypto wallet is launching for the Google Chrome browser first, but a Safari browser version and mobile app are also in the works. The mobile app could come into fruition as soon as early 2024, Lu shared.

The wallet will be compatible with the four blockchains that Magic Eden currently supports on its NFT marketplace: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Solana, and Ethereum scaling network Polygon.

The initial Magic Eden wallet will be self-custodied, meaning users will have full control over their crypto assets and will have to keep a seed phrase—a lengthy passphrase consisting of many words—secure.

But if downloading three different crypto wallets to buy NFTs on Ethereum, Solana, and Bitcoin is frustrating and cumbersome for users, why still make them deal with seed phrases at all? Why not offer a Magic Eden-custodied wallet with a one-click email solution instead?

Lu said that holding your own crypto and NFTs is crucial to “the ethos of Web3.”

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“We very much want to live up to that,” Lu said of Magic Eden’s belief in Web3, a term which refers to a hypothesized next iteration of the internet that offers users decentralized ownership through crypto. “That’s why we wanted to stick to something self-custodial.” 

Magic Eden’s wallet promises a more user-friendly, cross-chain solution for crypto fans, allowing them to avoid bridging (transferring crypto from one chain to another) by doing cross-chain token swaps through the wallet.

Lu is also very much aware of the common issues that afflict crypto browser extensions. For instance, when users have multiple wallets installed—like MetaMask, Coinbase Wallet, Phantom, or the Ronin Wallet, for example—they can occasionally “fight” each other to connect to a website, simultaneously popping up at once and creating connection issues and confusion.

“We're actually working pretty deeply right now to make sure that the wallets don't fight each other as much,” Lu said, citing Magic Eden’s work on its wallet with crypto tech firm Exodus.

In addition to cross-chain swaps, the Magic Eden wallet will also offer users the ability to buy crypto with fiat currency from within the wallet through a MoonPay integration, Lu said. The wallet will include NFT-focused features like cross-chain portfolio tracking, Bitcoin Ordinals support, and simultaneous connection to multiple blockchains.

“I think self-custody and email login—and those seamless implementations—they're not mutually exclusive,” Lu told Decrypt of the wallet’s potential future. “There’s a lot of very exciting technologies that we're looking to tap into to make that onboarding experience much more smooth, much more familiar to the mainstream user.”

Edited by Andrew Hayward

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