When we first started building Signata we wanted to make sure we were offering a service at the lowest cost we could handle. We figured it would be easiest for customers to just pay a small monthly fee, and that would cover everything for us to keep operating.
The only problem with a subscription-based approach is we were punishing new and infrequent users, and punishing ourselves if someone uses the service heavily.
And, we found managing subscriptions gets tricky. Very tricky. There are so many things you need to manage on an ongoing basis, such as checking if the user's payment method is still valid, applying coupons for limited time frames, handling if users. Granted these aren't actually hard problems to solve, they're just time-consuming. And as we're still growing we just don't have the resources yet to handle all of that extra time needed.
So, we removed the whole subscription model, and have instead opted for a Pay-As-You-Go approach. Instead of a fixed monthly fee, you now just purchase "Transfer Tokens" if you need them. If you're just holding onto your currency, then great! You won't have to pay a thing. You only need to pay when you want to move them back out again.
Ultimately our largest expense is handling blockchain transactions. We utilise a third party to actually handle these (BlockCypher), and they do charge fees for their fantastic service. We're planning on actually running our own nodes on each chain that we support, but if we go down that route operating those won't be cheap for us, so we'll still need to charge somewhere.
Get Free Tokens (for now)
If you sign up for Signata while we're still in Beta, you'll be given 50 free tokens as a thank you for trying the service. All you need to do is provide your Billing Address, and the tokens will then be applied to your account:
Why the billing address? That's just the first point that we create your billing profile in our service, and it was the easiest to tack on the tokens there for now.
And, if you're happy with the service we provide, your billing address will already be set and you can just add your credit card to purchase more (or follow the instructions to buy them with cryptocurrency instead).
What do the Transfer Tokens do?
One token is deducted every time you submit a transaction. Basically when you transfer some value from one address to another via a blockchain.
We will deduct one token if the transaction is processed by our third party - if something goes wrong with the transaction, like you don't have enough balance to cover fees, then the token will still be deducted (because we still had to pay fees to submit the transaction).
If you have run out of tokens, then you won't be able to start a transaction until you get more. You can still import/export your addresses if you need, we aren't going to hold your currencies ransom.
Why not just have a cash balance from the money I paid?
We aren't trying to "trick" people in the way that in-game currencies work on mobile phones. If processing a transaction costs exactly 1 token, then it's much easier to work out how many tokens you have left instead of figuring out how what your remaining balance will give you. And it applies no matter what currency you purchase with.
What we're also planning to do is offer the ability to earn tokens. That's a feature still in the works, but in a nutshell we'll likely be adding some cross-currency trading services into our product to let you trade still with the confidence of the protection of your YubiKeys. More on this soon!
We'll keep reviewing our payments model as our product evolves. Our backlog is massive at the moment. Just to give some hints as to what's coming soon:
- More devices supported - Nitrokeys should be added next!
- International support - We're thinking of supporting Spanish as an alternative language first. What language would you like our service to offer?
- Cross-currency trading with ShapeShift, and maybe other providers too (let us know your favourite!)
- Better device management and feedback - we've got some big back-end changes happening right now to improve device management and performance.
- Mobile apps - we need to test how much of the YubiKey we can use with the latest versions of iOS & Android, but if we can use them just like we can on Desktop, then we'll totally start the app builds :)
- Linux support - our app already can be built for Linux, but we need to test the installation and device integration first in case we need to do more.
If any of the above excites you, or you want us to release something as a priority, let us know! We'd love your feedback!
Sign up for Signata today to get your free transfer tokens: https://signata.net/