Ethereum Is Not Mobile 📵
December 17th, 2021

If you want to use the most interesting parts of Ethereum today, you need a desktop computer. Dapps are crafted to work on large screens, they are tailored to browsers that are fast on fast computers, and they almost all have blocks on certain screen sizes.

This has to change.

Mirror does not work on iPad
Mirror does not work on iPad

Dapps are bound to the desktop and most of the world does not own a desktop computer. Their primary personal computer is their phone.

Whenever a new Ethereum service is created, I try using it with JankyMask. JankyMask is a fork of Metamask from Dimitar Nestorov that works on Safari for iOS:

When it works, it is absolutely magical ✨ You can slide your wallet over the top of your browser and use the most incredible dapps right from your phone.

When it breaks, it is usually because the developer has blocked Safari or small screen sizes for no good reason at all.

Why Ethereum Developers Should Embrace Safari 

Safari is the only web browser that does not have a bad incentive model:

  • Chrome helps Google serve Ads
  • Internet Explorer is a history lesson
  • Brave has a $BAT-shit crazy token
  • Firebox begs Google for money

By contrast, Safari has one goal: make the iPhone’s battery life last longer while never compromising on security—that is it.

Apple cares about people. People buy Apple products for the best experience. They invest in Safari to make sure the mobile web remains fast, open and fair. Products like Ad Blocking, Hidden Email and Tracking Blockers have laid waste to mobile advertising networks.

Features like Privacy Report prove that Apple cares about people being able to try and browse anonymously, even if it is hard to pull off. They have first class support for Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) which help people evade Internet Service Provider’s (ISPs) censorship.

Apple cares about people
Apple cares about people

Safari iOS Extensions was the missing piece of the puzzle—literally 🧩—and the Ethereum community should embrace it. It proves that Apple is open to developers who wish to fuse the benefits of native apps with the openness of the web.

Metamask & Chrome 🦊

MetaMask is wedded to Chrome for very good reasons. Chrome is the number one desktop browser and has successfully crushed its competition. It is the dominant browser for the Android ecosystem. It captures a huge part of the desktop and mobile web. It makes sense that Metamask would become so dominant on the desktop but face much more competition on mobile.

Everyone was busy shoving dapp browsers inside wallets. Now we can place wallets inside browsers.

Chrome Dominates Desktop & Safari Dominates Mobile 🖥 📲

Chrome does not capture the majority of mobile spending dollars, Safari does.

The people that choose Android phones generally have less money to spend. Safari is where people who have money go to use it. As KaL Michael, a longtime Apple ecosystem designer puts it:

“Apple makes great products. That’s it.

Great products aren’t cheap and cheap products aren’t great.”

Android took an open source and broad standards approach. Apple focused on making the best possible product. The Android community generally follows the Apple community’s lead. If we can bring innovations to Apple’s ecosystem that are successful, Android-focused teams will soon copy them for the benefit of all.

America is not the world, but it does shape a lot of it. Americans are mostly on Apple:

Google created Chrome to serve people more adverts. That is their incentive.

iPhone is regaining market share 📈

The greatest Apple data commentator, Horace Dediu, recently released this post:

It includes this bombshell of a graph:

iPhone is winning in the US
iPhone is winning in the US

He makes a few incredible observations about why this is the case:

The new cameras are for the new generation of YouTube, Instagram and TikTok influencers. Ordinary people with extraordinary tools can do extraordinary work.

This is Apple’s compounding advantage: Apple creates tools for creators

The iPhone is doing better than ever.

There are more than 1 billion iPhone users. The total number of users has been rising steadily. iPhone users make up about 26% of all smartphone users (3.8 billion is the current estimate). The share of users in the US is about 60% (or soon will be.) The share in UK is close to 50%. All these share numbers are higher than ever. Over 14% of US and 10% of UK survey respondents have switched to an iPhone in the past two years. The following graph shows how churn is boosting iPhone market share in terms of users.

This is one of the many reasons the Ethereum community should start paying more attention to Safari.

Safari Wallet for Ethereum ♦

We have been working on Safari Wallet for the last 10 weeks and have made enormous progress. You can check out the project at:

Safari Wallet’s new homepage
Safari Wallet’s new homepage

Safari Extensions 🧩

iOS Safari Extensions are the missing piece of the puzzle. We can now mix Apple’s iPhone & Ethereum’s protocol together in a beautiful and simple way.

Applethereum ♦

I believe we are at the start of a very interesting journey to bring Apple and Ethereum closer together. If you are interested in helping us, please check out the GitHub project:

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