For those of you following the developments of Copay, an open-source multi-signature wallet in development by BitPay, some new information is coming our with regard to its capabilities.
Specifically, the information relates to asynchronous multisig capabilities. Now, just in case you’re not familiar, Copay allows the transmission of funds from a wallet once all copayers sign a transaction (the amount of copayers is chosen when the wallet is set up).
But in order for this to have happened, all copayers were required to be online in order to spend the bitcoin. That, of course, is a minor inconvenience that would require some planning.
Thankfully, all copayers need not be online at the same time to sign a transaction. Here’s an example provided today by the Copay team:
[blockquote style=”2″]Say Alice, Bob and Claire created a Copay multisignature 2-of-3 wallet to store their shared savings for a trip. With previous version of Copay, to spend those funds, they all had to be online to create a bitcoin multisignature transaction and sign it off. Now, they can each open their wallets at any time, and they will be able to see, evaluate and sign or reject the transaction asynchronously.[/blockquote]
The team was able to make this possible using Insight, BitPay’s open-source blockchain API. And while the team admits the change does add a small amount of centralization to Copay operations they “think the compromise is worth it.”