Trezor Model T is one of the leading cryptocurrency cold wallets. It is a competing product for the popular Ledger Nano X. Model T is the flagship model of Trezor and offers great usability, security and safety for any crypto investor. This article is a Trezor Model T review. It’s a complete installation guide, which helps you get started with Model T easily.
Trezor Model T review – general information
Trezor Model T is a cryptocurrency wallet made by a Czech company SatoshiLabs. Model T is a hardware wallet, which can be connected to your laptop via USB cable.
SatoshiLabs isn’t a well-known brand in the crypto scene, but the founders of the company have been involved with Bitcoin since early 2010. For example, Marek Palatinus was one of the founders of Slush Pool, which is the oldest Bitcoin mining syndicate.
Marek started to develop a cryptocurrency wallet early on and the first prototype was finished in 2012. The company SatoshiLabs was founded in 2013 and the first Trezor wallets were shipped in 2014.
Trezor One is the best-known product of SatoshiLabs. It was first published in 2016. Trezor Model T was published in 2018. It is an advanced model with many developments such as a touch screen. This article is an installation guide and a review of Trezor Model T.
Trezor is currently the best-known hardware wallet with the French wallet Ledger Nano. Both products are of high quality and they have thousands of fans all over the world.
Trezor Model T setup guide
Part 1: Trezor Bridge and Firmware
Begin your Trezor Model installation by unboxing the product. Trezor delivers you a USB cable, manual and a magnetic holder with the wallet. The magnetic holder allows you to attach the wallet under your table or some other place out of sight.
Trezor Model T is managed through special software, you must first install to your laptop. Connect the wallet to your laptop with the USB cable and being the installation by accessing the URL trezor.io/start/.
You’d see the following image.
Choose Trezor Model T. After that, a popup opens, which reminds you about the Trezor hologram. There is a hologram tape covering the USB adapter. If this tape was damaged or removed before you first used the wallet, proceed no further and contact Trezor customer service.
Next, you’d have a Trezor Bridge installation page on your browser. Windows, Mac OS X and Linux operating systems are supported. Click the correct download link and install the software on your computer.
After this, you’d have a welcome screen on your browser with a big green button for firmware installation.
Start the firmware installation, which updates your wallet with the latest software. There should be a text installing the firmware on your Trezor screen. This installation should take about 1-2 mins.
Part 2: Creating a wallet
If the firmware installation went through without any issues, you’d have the following view on your web browser.
Recover wallet is an option if you want to restore a wallet created earlier to another Trezor device. You need this option if your wallet gets stolen or lost. Previous wallets can be restored to a new device with your recovery sheet passwords.
Since we are now installing a new device, you’d choose the Create new option.
Next, the installation process asks you to accept Trezor terms and conditions. Click the green [v] button on your screen and that’s it! You’d have access to the Trezor control panel (see the image below).
The installation process is a lot shorter compared to Ledger, where you must go through the recovery key process before the device can be used. Trezor can be accessed in just a couple of minutes and it allows you to create wallets and receive cryptocurrency right away.
However, it is strongly recommended to create backup keys immediately. We’ll go through this process next.
Part 3: Backup keys and PIN
Trezor Model T is using special backup words for wallet restoration. Ledger Nano has a similar system. These backup keys make it possible to completely restore your wallets to a new device if your Trezor gets stolen or lost. You can simply buy a new device and restore your Bitcoins.
As mentioned above, it is not recommended to use the device before creating the backup keys. Click the orange button titled [Create a backup in 3 minutes] to proceed.
Next, you are reminded of some security threats. Never store these backup keys near your computer or your Trezor wallet. Don’t take a picture of them to your mobile phone or cloud storage. If anyone else gets access to these keys, your cryptocurrency is lost.
You’d have next 12 backup keys on your Trezor screen, meaning 12 different words. You can scroll down the list by swiping the screen up or down.
Write down the words to any piece of paper. Make sure you can read your own writing 100% surely! When you are done, click the [Hold to confirm] button on Trezor.
Next, Trezor is asking some of these backup words from you to make sure they are stored correctly.
Once you are through the process, you’d see the following text on your browser: You have successfully backed up your device! Next, click the green [Continue] button and begin the PIN code setup.
The PIN code will be entered to your Trezor. It works just like on your mobile phone, as a password to open your wallet when you interact with it.
It’s important to use a PIN code you will remember in any circumstances.
In case you wonder why the numbers on Trezor screen are shuffled, that is just a safety measure. Each number has a different position each time the PIN code is being inputted.
Next, you can give your Trezor a unique name. This is quite useful if you have multiple wallets.
The installation guide asks you finally to add the Trezor control panel to your browser bookmarks. That is strongly recommended. This way you’ll always use the correct URL and not some phishing site.
How to receive cryptocurrency with Trezor Model T
Your Trezor Model T is now fully installed. Next, we’d move some cryptocurrency in it.
Trezor Model T is managed via walle.trezor.io control panel – the very same one, which you used during the installation process. Open the control panel to your browser.
On the left side of the screen, there is a list of natively supported cryptocurrencies. Both Trezor and Ledger support hundreds of different cryptocurrencies. Some are pre-installed and easy to use, while some (like EOS) require professional skills and usage of third-party applications.
You’ll find the supported coin list from Trezor’s website.
Next, it’s time to make a cryptocurrency transaction. We’ll use Bitcoin Cash in our example, but the process is similar with all cryptocurrencies.
Select Bitcoin Cash from the top left corner. Once you have BCH selected, you’ll get the following notification that your wallet is still empty (but not for long!).
Click the [Receive] button to start the transaction process. Next, you’d see your Bitcoin Cash wallet address on your screen. Now you can simply make a transaction to this address from another wallet or exchange, wherever you have the coins right now.
Trezor isn’t any slower or faster than other wallets. The duration of each transaction depends on the cryptocurrency and the other wallet provider. Some currencies are almost instant, while Bitcoin transactions are usually available after 20-30 mins.
You don’t need to update the Trezor control panel. When the transaction is finished, it’ll become visible automatically.
How to send cryptocurrency using Trezor Model T
Now we can also make an outgoing transaction because there’s some Bitcoin Cash in our Trezor. It’s highly recommended to do these operations before you start to use any wallet or service. Send a small amount in and small amount out to make sure everything works just like it should.
Go back to your Trezor control panel, if you don’t have it open already. Select Bitcoin Cash from the top left menu. Next, click Send from the main menu.
The following form should open to your browser.
Now you have a very simple task: just fill in the receiver address and the amount you want to send. You don’t need to change the fee. Once you click the [Send] button, the transaction must be confirmed on your Trezor.
Your transaction is “shouted” to the network right away. The duration depends on the cryptocurrency you used and the software the receiver is using.
How to restore Trezor Model T using backup keys
As mentioned earlier, your Trezor wallets can be restored to a new device with backup keys. Trezor Model T is using 12 keys (= words), which you should create during the installation phase. This process is explained earlier in part three.
This is a good time to clear something, what newcomers tend to think. Even if Trezor is a hardware wallet, it doesn’t contain any virtual coins. This is not data storage like a traditional USB drive is. The information of each crypto address and its contents is always stored on the blockchain.
Trezor is holding your private keys, which are like a password to your e-mail account. Your public address (key) is always connected to a private key, which you only know. Trezor is storing this private key securely, so it won’t be exposed to hackers.
The best feature of a cold wallet like Trezor is the fact it’s offline. That makes it virtually impossible to hack.
However, it’s possible that you lose your Trezor wallet for one reason or another. It might get stolen, lost or damaged in some way. There is no need to worry, though. That’s why those backup keys are created.
You can buy a new Trezor and restore your wealth to it without any problems. Below is a video, which shows how this process is done. The backup is explained starting 17:24.
The backup process is very straightforward. Your backup keys (= words) are asked one-by-one during the process. Once you have input all the words correctly, your wallets can be accessed via the control panel.
If you want to store your backup codes really safely, check this Cryptosteel product.
It’s recommended to go through this backup process once before storing any significant amounts of cryptos to your Trezor. This way you can be sure you know what to do if you ever need to restore your wallets.
Trezor Model T vs Ledger Nano X comparison
Trezor Model T is the flagship product of Czech manufacturer SatoshiLabs. It’s a second-generation hardware wallet and a significant upgrade to Trezor One, which was published in 2016. In practice, we’d see Model T as a direct competitor to Ledger Nano X.
Which one is better, then? There is no easy answer to this question.
The older Ledger model, Nano S, is a hardware wallet, which uses a USB cable like Trezor Model T. However, the new Nano X can be used with your mobile via Bluetooth connection. There is no need for cables unless you want to plug it into your laptop as well.
Nano X is a better option if you want mobility and don’t like laptops or PCs.
If you are working mostly with your laptop and you use exchanges, trading tools etc. on your laptop as well, a USB cable is not a problem.
The image below has Trezor Model T contents.
Trezor Model T has a touchscreen, which is probably its biggest advantage. The installation process is also really fast if you want it to be. You can receive cryptos to your Trezor in few mins because it’s possible to skip the backup process.
Both Model T and Nano X support the most popular cryptocurrencies. The list grows and changes almost daily. It is also very easy to send and receive cryptocurrencies with both.
Decentralized exchanges (DEX) might be very popular in the future. They make it possible to trade cryptos straight from your hardware wallet. This is possible if your wallet provider supports the DEX in question.
Both Trezor and Ledger have DEX support, but it depends on the site. Trezor control panel has also Changelly and ChangeNow exchanges built-in, which are very useful tools.
Trezor Model T offers a safe, secure and user-friendly hardware wallet. It is a great choice for both amateurs and professionals.
How about Trezor One? The older and cheaper model is also a solid pick if you have a smaller budget. Trezor Model T has better usability and several hardware improvements as well, but Trezor One is also a good choice for small investors with small budget. Model T is a better option for active and professional investors.