AirGap — The step by step guide

Your old smartphone is your new ‘hardware wallet’ — follow this guide to setup AirGap and create your first transaction. More information about AirGap can be found on our website.

Published in
7 min readApr 23, 2019

Decisions — Do I need the highest security?

Before you start setting up you should decide how you want to use AirGap. If you plan on using it for all your funds or if you want to secure some of your spending money.

¬ Offline Approach— two apps, two device
AirGap Vault,
the private key is generated and securely stored on another device with the AirGap Vault app. The companion app AirGap Wallet is installed on your every-day smartphone. One-way communication with QR codes.

¬ Same Device Approach — two apps, one devices
AirGap Vault
, the private key is generated and securely stored in the AirGap Vault app and installed on the same device as the AirGap Wallet. Secure communication through app switching.

Step by Step — From installation to a successful transaction

Now that you’ve decided how you want to setup AirGap you can start by downloading both apps.

¬ Download AirGap Vault & Wallet
1 ¬ Download & Install AirGap Vault app

Vault for Android, iOS or direct download of the Android apk.

2 ¬ Download & Install AirGap Wallet app

Wallet for Android, iOS or direct download of the Android apk.

¬ Setup AirGap Vault

1 ¬ Disclaimer / 2 ¬ “Generate” / 3 ¬ Permissions

1 ¬ Open AirGap Vault

Open the AirGap Vault mobile App on your phone, read through the disclaimer and if you agree with it accept the terms.

2 ¬ Select “Generate”

“Generate” a new secret, you can also import an existing mnemonic phrase. We recommend that you generate a new secret on the air gapped device and not import one that was previously used in a device with network connectivity.

3 ¬ Accept the permission request

You have to give AirGap Vault video and audio permission, this is needed for the secret generation.

4 ¬ Generate / 5 ¬ Rules / 6 ¬ Backup

4 ¬ Generate your secret

The enhanced entropy concept adds video, audio, accelerator and touch data to the entropy seed alongside the device’s pre-shipped secure random generator in order to generate a cryptographically secure seed used for the secret generation.

5 ¬ Read & understand the rules

If your phone gets damaged or lost, you can still access your funds with the secret mnemonic phrase. To keep your secret safe, you need to follow these rules.

6 ¬ Backup your recovery phrase on a piece of paper

In order to have a backup of your secret, you need to write the following words on a piece of paper. Remember the rules!

7 ¬ Verify / 8 ¬ Save / 7 ¬ Authenticate

7 ¬ Verify your secret

Verify the secret you wrote down on a piece of paper, by selecting the correct word for the slot.

8 ¬ Secret name

Give your secret a name, so that you can identify it easier later.

9 ¬ Access the secure storage

Use your fingerprint to store the secret in the secure enclave of the mobile device.

Your secret has been created and is now safely stored in the secure enclave of the mobile phone. It can only be accessed by fingerprint and password through the AirGap Vault app.

¬ Sync AirGap Vault with AirGap Wallet

1 ¬ Add Account / 2 ¬ Onboarding / 3 ¬ Authenticate

1 ¬ Add a new account

Add a new account of your desired protocol, currently possible are Tezos, æternity, Ethereum and Bitcoin.

2 & 3 ¬ Allow access to the secret

Access the secret in the secure enclave of the AirGap Vault app with your fingerprint, pattern or Face ID.

4 ¬ Select Account / 5 ¬ Sync Account / 6 ¬ Wallet interaction

4 ¬ Select the newly added account

A new account for the selected coin has now been created.

5 ¬ Select “Sync Account”

AirGap Vault needs to “sync” the wallet with AirGap Wallet.

6 ¬ Wallet interaction

You can select a preference for how AirGap Vault interacts with AirGap Wallet. Select “offline device” if you’re using the offline approach or “same device” if you’ve installed both apps on the same device.

AirGap Wallet has never access to the secret.

7 ¬ Sync Account / 8 ¬ Confirm Import / 9 ¬ Overview

7 ¬ Sync Account

If you’re going down the offline route you will be shown the Sync QR code, which you need to scan with AirGap Wallet. For this open AirGap Wallet, go to the “Scan QRs” tab and scan the QR code. If you’re using the same device approach, you’ll be automatically forwarded to the “Confirm Import” screen

8 ¬ Confirm Import

The account is visible in AirGap Wallet and ready to “Import”.

8 ¬ Account added

After importing the account, it’s now available and visible in the “Accounts tab”

¬ Create a new transaction

1 ¬ Account Detail / 2 ¬ Create Transaction / 3 ¬ Vault interaction

1 ¬ Create a new transaction with “Send”

To create a new transaction, select “Send” in the account you’ve added to AirGap Wallet.

2 ¬ Enter transaction details

Enter the address, you can also scan an address QR code. Enter the amount and select the fee you’re willing to pay for the transaction.

3 ¬ Vault interaction

Like in the AirGap Vault you can also choose how you interact with the other app.

4 ¬ Transaction QR / 5 ¬ Sign Transaction / 6 ¬ Authentication

4 ¬ Created transaction can now be signed by AirGap Vault

The transaction is now prepared, you need to sign it with AirGap Vault. Scan the transaction QR code if you’re using the offline approach. You’ll be automatically forwarded to the Vault if you’re using the same device approach.

5 ¬ Sign transaction with AirGap Vault

The transaction prepared transaction is now ready to be signed in AirGap Vault.

6 ¬ Unlock the secret

Access the secret in the secure enclave of the AirGap Vault app with your fingerprint, pattern or Face ID.

7 ¬ Signed Transaction / 8 ¬ Confirm Transaction / 9 ¬ Success

7 ¬ Signed Transaction

The transaction has been signed with your secret and is ready to be broadcasted. Scan the QR with the AirGap Wallet app or broadcast it on the same device. If you’re using the same device approach you will be automatically forwarded to the AirGap Wallet app.

8 ¬ Confirm transaction in AirGap Wallet to broadcast.

After confirming the transaction in AirGap Wallet it will be broadcasted to the blockchain.

9 ¬ Success! Your first AirGap transaction has been broadcasted!

Interested in AirGap? Stay in touch.

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Secure Key Generation & Wallet