On February 27th, 2019, Casa has announced the launch of a new approach to its products and services: Sovereignty-as-a-Service. This concept is rooted in the idea that design and engineering are essential in maintaining high standards, but it’s actually the customer service that keeps customers around for a long time.
More precisely, Casa clients who bought (or will buy at some point in the future) the Node and/or the multisig Bitcoin storage solution, will receive the benefits of a Keymaster package. For instance, every owner of a Casa node becomes a Gold customer who gets 24/7 competent support, full access to the Keymaster iOS and Android apps, first access to new products that are still in development, and information about events and meetups.
Other features include the bragging rights of becoming a part of this decentralized internet initiative which encourages full financial sovereignty, as well as the chance to fund open-source software development that is beneficial for the entire space.
At press time, the distinction between the Silver, Gold, Platinum, and Diamond packages is still vague. However, one can observe differences in terms of quantity and magnitude: while Silver and Gold seem pretty basic and concern increased support for individuals, Platinum and Diamond appear to be more complex and oriented towards advanced users who own a lot of bitcoins and want to ensure the best protection possible.
Above everything, Casa is a software company which sells user autonomy via competent software. That’s why it makes a lot of sense to focus more on the needs of individual and collective users by granting extra benefits and establishing a framework that seems to also determine priority and urgency. It’s very likely that folks who pay $10.000 for a yearly Premium plan receive the Diamond plan and have their calls answered instantly, while the more casual Silver members have to wait in line – but getting what you pay for is absolutely normal and it’s great to see that Casa offers more features that one might expect.
Everyone who bought a Node in late 2018 probably didn’t expect the company to be so focused on customer support. Therefore, everything coming our way (including access to the Keymaster app) is a nice little bonus that’s meant to remind us that Casa is in this game for the long run.
Sovereignty-as-a-Service is also about privacy
Though the topic can be intensely and exhaustively debated, one can’t really have complete sovereignty without a layer of privacy. You can’t really affirm that you own your data (which also includes private keys) if a third party has access to data about the way you use your devices or information gets collected to “improve customer experience”.
Casa’s customer service is self-hosted, independent, and features no analytics or unwanted data collection. Instead of using cloud services that may routinely sell customer data to maximize their profits, the company of Alena Vranova, Jameson Lopp, and Jeremy Welch has decided to prioritize data security and minimize risks.
For quite some time, the norm on the internet has been that products and services that are offered for free turn the user into the data-mined product. In the case of Casa, everything is paid for and sometimes you might even think that you’re making the purchase at a premium price: for instance, the Casa Node can be built with an investment of $100 and a few hours of your time, while the multi-sig key management can also be done using free open-source software.
However, it’s the support and development for which you pay more money: and if you’re the kind of person or company that doesn’t want to troubleshoot using long FAQ files or without asking trusted buddies about the recommended fix, then you’re definitely better off to pay some professionals.
Financial sovereignty through cryptography is definitely complicated for general audiences, and most people are completely clueless in terms of understanding the terminology and making the key decisions. While Casa can be regarded as a trusted third party that can fail, it’s still a well-meaning actor that leads the way towards educating the masses in the spirit of true digital autonomy and financial independence (at least from an institutional perspective).
Maybe that one day the world will be filled with knowledgeable people who are well-educated in the fields of computer science and cryptography. But until then, we will be needing more companies and actors like Casa to release products and services that anyone can use. Until you discover your perfect balance to walk on the tight rope, you need a safety net and some instructions – and that’s exactly what Casa offers in this world of hackers and malevolent actors who would do anything for your precious bitcoins.
The American company has announced that more details about their sovereignty-enabling services would get released in the coming weeks. Until then, it’s useful to take notes and learn about how business should be conducted in this space in order to gain the trust and loyalty of your customers. The Bitcoin space needs more companies like Casa.
For more detailed information, read the entire blog post here.
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