As the developer platform for verifiable credentials, Trinsic has focused on abstracting the complexities of advanced open source technologies and protocols away into easy-to-use APIs & SDKs used by hundreds of developers. We’ve also pioneered digital wallets in both technology and user experience, releasing the first wallet to achieve multi-vendor interoperability and introducing the iconic card-like UI which has other vendors around the world following suit.
Today, we are pleased to launch the next big innovation for our developers and mobile app users.
Introducing interactive connections
At Trinsic, we seek to provide developers with the best, most flexible tooling for implementing any use case. That’s why after pioneering connectionless credential exchange, we’re now pleased to support connections that are more useful and powerful than ever before. This brings flexibility and additional functionality to the hundreds of developers and companies that build on Trinsic.
Current digital wallet implementations fall short of the vision of self-sovereign identity (SSI) because they only allow wallet holders to respond to, not initiate, interactions with institutions. This reduces wallet holders to a passive role, which at best delivers suboptimal utility to the holder, and at worst can reinforce the unhealthy power asymmetries between institutions and people that exist today.
Interactive connections solve this problem by creating a two-way street between a wallet holder and an institution. Instead of a passive responder, the wallet holder is a peer who can initiate actions of their own. In addition, wallet holders can interact not only with institutions, but also with other wallet holders, to communicate securely and share verified information.
Interactive connections are supported in the new Trinsic Wallet 3.1.0 release available in the App Store for iOS and Play Store for Android. Like the other features in the Trinsic platform, interactive connections will continue to evolve over time based on the needs of our developer community. We’ve implemented four new features that help us get closer to the rich interactions people should expect with SSI.
- Proactive credential sharing
- Interoperable chat messaging
- Activity log
- Connection invitation
Sharing your credentials proactively
Historically, wallet holders couldn’t share information from their credentials unless someone requested it through something called a verification request (or ‘proof’/’presentation’ request). That means you wouldn’t be able to share, for example, your business card with a new connection, or your address with someone who needed directions to your home, unless those people somehow conjured up a presentation request to send you first.
You can now share information from your credentials in a way that others can verify instantly conveniently from the Trinsic Wallet. When sharing credentials proactively, make sure 1) you and your connection are using the same network and 2) both of you have the Trinsic Wallet mobile app open throughout the credential sharing process.
Interoperable chat messaging
Basic messaging functionality has been highly-requested ever since we removed messaging during our rebrand from Streetcred ID to Trinsic. It was a favorite feature of many. Use cases range from the practical—eg., what if your name was misspelled in a credential offer—to the critical—developers in the UK and USA have created local contact tracing solutions using messaging.
We chose to implement the feature using DIDComm—specifically the Aries Basic Message RFC 0095—and display it in a chat-like interface on the Trinsic Wallet. That means messaging is interoperable between Trinsic and any other Aries-based implementations.
Integrating communication and credential exchange tightly in a single experience ensures developers have the tools they need to create rich experiences with their users. The Trinsic API supports messaging (in beta) and has been used to send thousands of messages by a handful of developers. Our next release will include full messaging support in the API, SDKs, and documentation.
A historical log of activities with a given connection can now be found in the chat interface of the mobile application. You can view:
- messages you’ve sent or received
- credentials you’ve shared or received
- credentials others have shared with you
Our beta testers unanimously preferred embedding the activity inline with chat messages. At Trinsic, we frequently call upon familiar mental models to explain complex topics, like we did by introducing the credential card design to the market. Displaying historical credential exchange in a chat-like format invokes a similarly familiar mental model, making credential exchange even more accessible to people everywhere.
You can now connect with anyone by creating your own connection invitation. Instead of waiting for a QR code to scan, you can now create your own QR code. You can also send a connection invitation to someone through email, SMS, WeChat, or whatever your preferred method of communication is.
We encourage you to try interacting with your connections as a standard part of your SSI workflows. Soon, using Trinsic’s full-stack verifiable credential platform, you’ll be able to implement end-to-end interactive connections for any application. See the table below for the status on each product and its support for interactive connections. For more information on getting started with these products, click here for our documentation.
The Trinsic platform
We’ve been amazed to see the things that our community of hundreds of developers have built using the Trinsic Platform. It’s inevitable that you’ll build something we hadn’t anticipated when designing these features, and we can’t wait to see it.
- Trinsic Studio: An easy-to-use web interface for managing credential exchange with no code. Also serves as the mechanism to acquire API keys and manage billing for paid plans. Try it for yourself completely free, and issue a credential in less than 5 minutes!
- Provider API: Our newest API enables developers to programmatically provision issuer and verifier cloud agents. Learn more about the provider API in the recent launch announcement.
- Credentials API: Our core API enables developers to have a turnkey way to issue, verify, and manage verifiable credentials on any Hyperledger Indy network. Check out our documentation or one of our reference applications to get started.
- Wallet API: An API for creating and managing cloud wallets on behalf of credential holders. It’s the backend of our Mobile SDK, which you can read more about in our recent post about building your own SSI wallets. Get started with the API by checking out the documentation.