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Blog posts, Product | 09/16/2020

Coin Control, Now Available in Ledger Live

Coin Control

Ledger Live version 2.11.1 brings yet another powerful feature to its arsenal with Coin Control. You can now set up your Bitcoin (and derivatives) transactions up the way you want to through it. 

More Power over your Transactions with Coin Control

At Ledger, we are always looking at interesting, powerful and popular features that are desired by the community to integrate within Ledger Live. Yesterday’s Ledger Live version 2.11.1 release didn’t only add a native Algorand integrationit also added the much anticipated Coin Control feature for Bitcoin and its derivatives! This allows you to set up your Bitcoin transaction exactly the way you want it, choosing for optimal fee usage or perhaps opting for privacy instead.

This feature that especially caters to advanced users’ desire can now be used by going into “Advanced Options” when creating a Bitcoin or derivative transaction. You can read more about how to use it here.

What is Coin Control?

Coin control is an advanced feature for Bitcoin and its derivatives. This feature only exists for these cryptocurrencies, since they make use of Hierarchical Deterministic (HD) wallets. This means that a single Bitcoin account in Ledger Live manages a multitude of different Bitcoin addresses.

Before today, Ledger Live would choose to use your oldest received coins for a new transaction, meaning it would use them on a First-in, First-out (FIFO) basis. These previously received coins are also known as Unspent Transaction Outputs – or UTXO in short. Coin Control gives you more choice in this. When you are creating a transaction through Coin Control, you will now be able to manually pick which addresses and UTXOs you want to use for compiling the transaction. With this update, we’re giving you more power and control over your own funds – a trend that we intend to expand on even further.

Why does Coin Control Matter?

There can be a large variety of reasons as to why someone would want to pick the addresses they’d like to use. 

Firstly, it adds protection against a potential privacy threat known as Dusting Attacks. In this, you’d receive tiny bits of BTC. This tiny amount would then be tracked, which could potentially through thorough analysis find out the identity of the owner. With Coin Control, you can simply choose to not use this tiny Unspent Transaction Output (UTXO). As such, they cannot track any movements. In short: it can be a game changer when it comes to your privacy.

Equally a big deal, you can choose the coin selection strategy for reducing the fees you’d need to pay. By choosing UTXOs with a higher value rather than the oldest ones, this strategy is able to reduce the byte size of your transaction. This would optimize the network fees to pay.

Lastly, you can now choose what you’d like to use a specific Bitcoin address for. Let’s say you’re running a blog and are open to receiving Bitcoin donations. You could opt to share a single Bitcoin address for this purpose. With Coin Control, you can access and make transactions purely for this specific address, not revealing others linked to it in the process.

Better Clarity on Replaceable Transactions

Another addition to enhance awareness and security is that Ledger Live will now differentiate between unconfirmed incoming transactions that are pending, and ones that can be replaced through Replace By Fees (RBF). The latter will now be referred to as a “Replaceable” transaction.

This grants our users better visibility on the status of incoming transactions, and will make them less likely to fall to a specific form of phishing through social engineering. As a reminder: it’s best practice to consider a transaction as “not yet received” until it is confirmed.

Coin Control is the latest feature to be added to Ledger Live – a powerful asset in the extensive arsenal that Ledger Live provides. We’re constantly looking into which new and useful features our much beloved community is asking for, and Coin Control was definitely high up there. Thank you everyone for your feedback, it is much appreciated and helps us to make Ledger Live even better for all of you.

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