Universal Login Is Now… UniLogin!

Alex Van de Sande
Published in
3 min readFeb 14, 2020


But there’s more! Stick around for some cool stories and unicorn drawings.

Here’s the short version: we’re rebranding ourselves from the long “Universal Login” name, to the shorter, fancier UniLogin brand, with some extra unicorn sparkle. But wait, don’t go yet! There’s a bit more, and you might learn what we’ve learned in the process.

(Neither Sean Parker nor Justin Timberlake are actual advisors for Unilogin. Yet.)

How many layers does it take to build an app?

A new logo is a little layer on top of the brand, which is itself a layer over the user experience, which can only exist thanks to many layers of underlining tech.

The idea of a universal Ethereum login started mostly as a research idea posted on Ethereum development forums which, thanks to a generous grant from ECF and ETHPrize in 2018, became a working prototype.

Soon, on top of that, we had smart contracts and a Javascript SDK for generating accounts, transactions, and confirming them. It felt like most of the work was done. Boy, we were wrong.

Apps don’t want to have to call directly the intricate patterns of generating meta-transactions. Developers don’t want to have to think about the best way to store client-side-only burner accounts, nor do they want to build a relayer network connection.

If you are already building a complex Ethereum app, you already have most of the calls going into this unique browser object called Web3Provider, which is usually injected by an Ethereum enabled browser like Brave or Opera, or an extension like MetaMask. So we created a connector that would translate all the meta-transaction magic into this standard.

It felt like it was ready to ship and we started testing it with a few live pilot projects. Boy, we were wrong.

The next layer we found was the user interface. In order to add new keys, generate a Gnosis Safe address, confirm new device connections or new transactions, you need to show some interface to users. That visual library needs to be neutral enough so it blends in with any app, while at the same time being rich enough so that new developers don’t need to write it from scratch. So we built that UI layer, full of buttons, dialogs and confirmations. And boy, it looks nice!

At this point, we needed more documentation and a new website, and it felt appropriate to shorten the name. Ethereum already has a unicorn theme to it, being the mascot of Devcon, Uniswap, and others. It also comes with some beautiful illustrations. Check them out!

As we are now close to production release, we know that no software is ever finished. But every so often in any walk it’s nice to stop and take a look back at how far we’ve gone. If you want to do that together, watch our talk in ETHDenver and maybe bump us to get some cool stickers!

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