Ledger Nano S Plus vs Nano X - February 2024

Ledger Nano S Plus and Ledger Nano X review to help you take full control of your crypto-assets

Jules Br0gn4
10 min readMay 19, 2019
Article’s featured image

You have finally decided to secure your precious cryptocurrencies and that is the question: what is the difference between Ledger Nano S Plus and Ledger Nano X?

Now that Bitcoin is going mainstream while its price keep rising, the value of your crypto-assets gets increasingly important.

If you wish to fully protect your money against online threats, that’s exactly what these products “magically” do…

What makes these devices so safe? Furthermore, as of February 2024 which is the best Ledger device to shut the door on hackers?

Thanks to this comparison between Ledger Nano S Plus and Ledger Nano X, you are going to know why a Ledger wallet does neutralize hacker attacks, which device best suits your needs and how to save on purchases.

For your own safety, only trust the OFFICIAL LEDGER WEB STORE

What are Ledger hardware wallets?

In 2016 “Ledger Nano S” was launched (Nano S Plus predecessor) and became an essential tool for people who used to deal with crypto stuff.

In a short time it established itself as the symbol of hardware wallets. These are devices - also known as “cold storage” - designed with specific features that fully protect the private keys.

Ledger Nano S, undoubtedly, proven superior to devices from other brands (e.g., Trezor), such that every enthusiast, trader or investor couldn’t do without the “key” manufactured by Ledger.

However a new and more innovative device has been around since 2019. This is Ledger Nano X!

That’s not all! As of March 2022, a new and enhanced version of Ledger Nano S is available. This is Ledger Nano S Plus!

Ledger Nano S Plus has replaced the old Ledger Nano S - which is no longer for sale - and features more storage space and a bigger screen size.

To make everything clear to you, let’s dig into the differences between Ledger Nano S Plus and Ledger Nano X. At the bottom I am also going to link a tutorial to teach you how to get started with your new device.

Ledger Nano S Plus

Ledger Nano S Plus is a hardware wallet and, as such, this device never exposes the private keys it uses to sign transactions.

Ledger Nano S Plus actually is a micro PC with its own O.S. called “Blockchain Open Ledger Operating System”, or BOLOS.

This device transfers data to a PC or a laptop via the USB-C to USB-A cable provided in the box.

Ledger device connected to a laptop via USB cable
Ledger device connected to a laptop via USB cable - Source: Ledger website

The private keys stay stored in a tamper proof memory area, accessible by the Ledger hardware only following O.S. calls.

These private keys are protected by a “secure element”.

This secure chip is locked through a PIN code and is certified using the Common Criteria (CC) EAL5+ process.

In simple terms, even if you were to use your Ledger Nano S Plus over infected computers, your cryptocurrencies would not be at risk: the private keys never leave the protected area of the device.

Ledger devices actually are the safest commercial solution ever. They can effectively protect your money against the daily cyber attacks.

All the operations are controlled through two buttons only and are displayed on the device screen.

In order to send a transaction it is mandatory to sign it by physically pressing the mechanical buttons of the device, after checking on the screen the amount and the destination address.

A transaction gets authorized only when you physically press the buttons. This means that no malware can steal your cryptocurrencies.

Ledger Nano S Plus features a screen with a 128x64 resolution.

It also benefits of more storage space than its predecessor. Ledger Nano S Plus capacity is 1.8.

This means that Ledger Nano S Plus supports up to 100 applications simultaneously installed, though the actual capacity depends on the size of the apps.

Ledger Nano X

Ledger Nano X is based on the same security features as Ledger Nano S Plus, though its secure element chip (ST33) is more powerful than the one provided for Ledger Nano S Plus (ST31).

This leads Ledger Nano X to superior hardware architecture, making it more responsive.

Anyway, what makes Ledger Nano X truly unique is that it is designed for mobile use.

It integrates bluetooth communication, which allows Ledger Nano X to be used wireless via smartphones or tablets thanks to “Ledger Live” mobile app.

This is a low energy (BLE) connectivity, thanks to which the device does not need a large battery.

Sending a transaction via smartphone using Ledger Nano X
Sending a transaction via smartphone using Ledger Nano X - Source: Ledger website

In order to protect user’s privacy, bluetooth connection is end-to-end encrypted.

Even if hackers were to manage to compromise bluetooth transport, they would not be able to get the private keys or to sign a transaction that the user does not want to send.

At this point the reason should be clear to you: the private keys always stay within the secure chip that protects them.

If you don’t need the wireless connection you will be able to disable bluetooth anytime, though.

Ledger Nano X can be used via its USB-C to USB-A cable as well, by connecting the device either to PCs or laptops.

This means that Ledger Nano X allows you to choose the option you prefer:

  1. You can use it with your smartphone or with your tablet, thanks to the bluetooth connection
  2. You can connect it to your PC or laptop (64-bit architecture only) via the USB cable provided in the box

Ledger Nano X battery capacity is 100 mAh.

It can be charged by connecting the device either to a PC or a laptop via the USB cable, otherwise through a power bank.

Battery life is up to 8 hours in case of use, while it is some months (up to 3) if the device is idle.

As for storage Ledger Nano X features the same capacity as Ledger Nano S Plus (1.8 Mb), allowing to install up to 100 apps at the same time.

Ledger Nano X screen size is the same as that of Ledger Nano S Plus (128x64).

Which Ledger device is right for you?

I have just explained the different characteristics of Ledger hardware wallets. It is time to figure out which one is the preferable choice for your use case.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution. The choice depends on the concrete needs of the user.

You may need just one specific device, or more than one for using them in combination, or even bundles.

Picking Ledger Nano S Plus

If you are a long term holder that only rarely sends transactions, a Ledger Nano S Plus - to be used via PC or laptop - might be suitable for you.

If you think that you will not need to send or receive cryptocurrencies via smartphone or via tablet, at any time and wherever you may be, maybe you could give up buying a Ledger Nano X.

All in all, Ledger Nano S Plus is not suitable especially for users who need a device to be used at any time along with smartphones or tablets, without being compelled to physically connect it to PCs or laptops.

Anyway, if a wired connection is not a bother, you can still link your Ledger Nano S Plus to Android smartphones or tablets through this OTG cable.

Aside from technical features, you may decide to pick a Ledger Nano S Plus because it cost less.

Ledger Nano S Plus is cheaper than Ledger Nano X because it does not feature bluetooth connection.

---> LEDGER NANO S PLUS

Picking Ledger Nano X

Would you like to have the best crypto hardware wallet?

Ledger Nano X is the appropriate solution for users who want to be able to send transactions even via smartphones or tablets, when they are not at home or have not a laptop with them.

For instance, if you are on the beach and need to send a transaction - either for trading reasons or to pay something - but you only have a smartphone, you can send and receive cryptocurrencies at any time thanks to the bluetooth feature of Ledger Nano X.

After the launch of Ledger Nano S Plus, the wireless connection is the unique characteristic of Ledger Nano X.

As a matter of fact, Ledger S Plus features the same storage space as Ledger Nano X as well as the same screen size. Nevertheless, it does not integrate bluetooth connection.

This means that you can’t do without a Ledger Nano X if you like a wireless solution to handle your crypto on-the-go.

---> LEDGER NANO X

Ledger bundles

Not just a single Ledger Nano S Plus or Ledger Nano X. The official Ledger website offers some interesting bundles as well.

These are designed to help new users understand and master the crypto world, or to offer more devices at a lower price.

Ledger Backup Pack

Why getting just one when you can have it all??

You might consider worthwhile to purchase both Ledger Nano S Plus and Ledger Nano X.

It is available a Ledger Nano S Plus + Ledger Nano X bundle being called “Ledger Backup Pack”, which lets you save about 10% on the purchase.

Should you decide to get both, you could take advantage of the devices in the following way:

  • Ledger Nano X on-the-go, only to store a small amount you need in that moment
  • Ledger Nano S Plus at home or into a safe, to safely store the bulk of your cryptocurrencies

Last but non least, you should take into consideration that your Ledger Nano X might break. In this case it would be temporarily replaced by your Ledger Nano S Plus.

Gift idea! Should you feel like making a gift you could keep one device for you and give somebody the other as a present, taking advantage of the discount you will get on the overall purchase.

---> LEDGER BACKUP PACK

Ledger Family Pack

Do you want to get your family into crypto?

Still few people are aware of that! Cryptocurrencies are going mainstream and people habits are going to change accordingly.

Soon in families each member will have his or her own crypto wallet, just as you now owns a common wallet for banknotes and coins.

That’s why Ledger has launched the “Ledger Family Pack”. This is to introduce your relatives into crypto and help them to secure, manage and grow their assets.

Thanks to these promo bundles Ledger is willing to give you 3 Ledger Nano S Plus (Ledger Family Pack S Plus) or 3 Ledger Nano X (Ledger Family Pack X), rebating about 10% of the price.

---> LEDGER FAMILY PACK S PLUS

---> LEDGER FAMILY PACK X

Wrap-up

Ledger hardware wallets are similar to a small USB pendrive.

They are built with the highest quality materials which protect the device from physical damages. They have a sturdy plastic interior enclosed by a rotating metal sheath, which safeguard them in the event of a fall.

As for usage, a Ledger hardware wallet lets you do much more than just store your crypto.

By installing Ledger Live, from within this app, the owner of any Ledger device can buy, sell, swap and stake cryptocurrencies, as well as use DeFi dApps, and even purchase gift cards of several brands with crypto through Bitrefill.

Last but not least, Ledger devices are not only designed to store and manage cryptocurrencies. They can be also used as devices for two-factor authentication through the FIDO Universal Second Factor (U2F) standard.

This is not related to cryptocurrencies. It is an additional feature for your Ledger device to secure online accounts.

Ledger Nano S Plus features

  • Secure element chip: ST31
  • Wired connection only
  • USB-C to USB-A cable
  • Storage space: 1.8 Mb
  • Screen size: 128x64
  • Two factor authentication (U2F) feature
  • 5 flavours: Mattle Black, BTC Orange, Ice, Deepsea Blue, Mystic White
Ledger Nano S Plus black
Ledger Nano S Plus black - Source: Ledger website

Ledger Nano X features

  • Secure element chip: ST33
  • Bluetooth and wired connection
  • USB-C to USB-A cable
  • Storage space: 1.8 Mb
  • Screen size: 128x64
  • Two factor authentication (U2F) feature
  • 3 flavours: Onyx Black, Blazing Orange, Cosmic Purple
Ledger Nano X black
Ledger Nano X black - Source: Ledger website

Why should you prefer a Ledger hardware wallet over those of other brands?!

Because Ledger devices are among the best hardware wallets, well designed, very safe, practical and easy to use (follow the Ledger Nano X tutorial below).

Never forget, these are the most widely supported crypto devices across third-party wallets (e.g., by Samsung Galaxy Blockchain Wallet) and blockchain apps and services you will want to use.

In order to prevent the devices from being tampered with, buy them only via the OFFICIAL LEDGER WEB STORE HERE

---> LEDGER NANO X TUTORIAL to learn how to get started with your new device and manage your cryptocurrencies.

Hopefully this Ledger Nano S Plus vs Ledger Nano X review helps you figure out which device is right for you. Should you have any doubts or questions ask me in the comments below, even if you need technical assistance.

Disclosure: This post includes an affiliate link that allows you to securely get the devices via the official Ledger web store, avoiding fake websites and scams.

--

--

Jules Br0gn4

Belgian researcher and consultant, crypto activist and DeFi expert.