The Solana phone is the leap that Google and Apple won't take, says Anatoly Yakovenko

Episode 60 of Season 4 of The Scoop was recorded live at The Block headquarters in New York with The Block’s Frank Chaparro and Anatoly Yakovenko, co-founder and CEO of Solana Labs.

Listen below, and subscribe to The Scoop on AppleSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you listen to podcasts. Email feedback and revision requests to [email protected]


Many Web3 platforms require users to connect their crypto wallets before engaging with the platform in any meaningful way.

Consequently, the Web3 experience on mobile devices is tedious at best, given current devices are not designed with such functionalities in mind.

Solana Mobile — a subsidiary of the development team behind Solana — hopes to address the difficulties that surround the Web3 mobile user experience with its new Android phone called ‘Saga,’ which is slated for release in early 2023. 

Last week, Solana Labs co-founder and CEO Anatoly Yakovenko announced the new mobile device, which will run a ‘Solana Mobile Stack’ (SMS) operating system and will feature a marketplace for decentralized Web3 applications.

In this episode of The Scoop, Anatoly Yakovenko said he believes Saga’s early success will be linked to its ability to significantly enhance the mobile crypto user experience:

“The theory is that crypto users might be crazy enough to switch from iOS to Android because of crypto. It might be so important to have that experience, that they're willing to change their habits.”

If Solana Mobile is successfully able to prove there is consumer demand for crypto-forward mobile products, Yakovenko believes it will inspire major tech companies to integrate crypto infrastructure into their own mobile devices moving forward:

“You need Google and Apple to do it, but they're not going to do it until there is proven demand that people need it — and so somebody has to kind of make that leap…”

During this episode, Chaparro and Yakovenko also discuss:

  • Yakovenko’s background working for Qualcomm
  • The $10 million fund to bring developers to SMS
  • How the ‘Saga Pass’ NFT will allow early adopters to guide development

This episode is brought to you by our sponsors Chainalysis & IWC Schauffhausen

About Chainalysis
Chainalysis is the leading blockchain data platform. We provide data, software, services, and research to government agencies, exchanges, financial institutions, and insurance and cybersecurity companies in over 60 countries. Backed by Accel, Addition, Benchmark, Coatue, Paradigm, Ribbit, and other leading firms in venture capital, Chainalysis builds trust in blockchains to promote more financial freedom with less risk. For more information, visit www.chainalysis.com.

About IWC Schaffhausen
IWC Schaffhausen is a Swiss luxury watch manufacturer based in Schaffhausen, Switzerland. Known for its unique engineering approach to watchmaking, IWC combines the best of human craftsmanship and creativity with cutting-edge technology and processes. With collections like the Portugieser and the Pilot’s Watches, the brand covers the whole spectrum from elegant timepieces to sports watches. For more information, visit IWC.com


© 2022 The Block Crypto, Inc. All Rights Reserved. This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

About Author

Davis Quinton covers topics ranging from digital assets to financial markets as a Podcast Editorial Fellow at The Block. When the global pandemic disrupted his progression through law school in 2020, Davis discovered the digital asset space for the first time. Davis started at The Block in early 2022 and works closely with leaders across divisions to produce content for The Block’s flagship podcast, The Scoop. He previously held positions at Wells Fargo and Finsbury Glover Hering. He holds a degree in Social Research & Public Policy from New York University in Abu Dhabi.