🦔 Announcing Hedgehog by Audius: Build Your DApps Like Apps

Today, Audius is launching Hedgehog to dramatically improve user experience in low financial value use-cases.

Hedgehog is an open-source, client-side Ethereum wallet that uses a username and password and doesn’t prompt users to confirm transactions. It allows users to interact with your DApp just like they would any other website, no extensions required, without centralizing control of private keys.

Why Hedgehog?

Using crypto apps today is hard. Really hard.

  1. Install MetaMask
  2. Set up MetaMask, write down your wallet seed and store it in a safety deposit box (does anybody do this?)
  3. Sign up for Coinbase, including full KYC / identity verification
  4. Buy ETH
  5. Send ETH to your MetaMask wallet
  6. Now go back to the DApp and sign up…

For some DApps, the abandon rate at the

“Install MetaMask” step of their signup flow is over 90%.

By combining Hedgehog with EIP-712 signatures and a transaction relaying service to pay gas on behalf of your users trustlessly, as we have done at Audius, this onboarding flow turns into only 1 step:

  1. User signs up with username (or email) and password

When Not To Use Hedgehog

High financial value use-cases are not a good fit for this type of approach. For cryptographers and security-minded folks reading this, you will understand that there’s no free lunch, and to achieve this improvement to usability Hedgehog does not prompt users to approve transactions. As a DApp developer, you must understand these tradeoffs before choosing to integrate Hedgehog.

How Does It Work?

Hedgehog lives in your front end Javascript code. A user enters a username (or email) and password, which is used to secure a set of encrypted auth artifacts that are generated client-side and stored in the browser’s localStorage and on the application developers’ server. In this way, the encrypted auth artifacts can be retrieved and consumed on secondary devices without centralizing custody and control of the private key.

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