Best Bitcoin & Cryptocurrency Wallets

wallet

This guide will help you to find the best Bitcoin wallet or cryptocurrency wallet for YOU!

 

Hint:

 

There’s no “one size fits all” wallet. Wallets come on different platforms with different features.
If you want the best possible wallet, keep reading…

CHAPTERS

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 6

OUR TOP PICKS

Best Wallet For

Ledger Nano X

Secure storage for any cryptocurrency

The Ledger Nano X is the newest crypto hardware wallet, and is very easy to use. It connects to iOS, Android & desktop computers.

DropBit

Easy to use iOS & Android wallet

DropBit is new, but is very easy to use and friendly for new Bitcoin users. It supports Bitcoin only.

Electrum

Simple yet powerful desktop wallet

Electrum is a Bitcoin-only wallet that has been around since 2011. It’s easy to use, but has advanced features.

CHAPTER 1

What is a Bitcoin & Cryptocurrency Wallet?

A Bitcoin/cryptocurrency wallet is the first step to using Bitcoin or crypto.

Why?

A “wallet” is basically the equivalent of a bank account. It allows you to receive bitcoins and other coins, store them, and then send them to others.

You can think of a wallet as your personal interface to the Bitcoin network, similar to how your online bank account is an interface to the regular monetary system.

Wallets contain private keys; secret codes that allow you to spend your coins.

In reality, it’s not coins that need to be stored and secured, but the private keys that give you access to them.

In short:

A crypto or Bitcoin wallet is simply an app, website, or device that manages private keys for you.

This guide will show you how to create a wallet and pick the best one.

CHAPTER 2

Types of Bitcoin & Crypto Wallets

Let’s discuss the types of wallets and why you might want to use one kind over another.

Hardware Wallets

A hardware wallet is a physical electronic device, built for the sole purpose of securing crypto coins.

The core innovation is that the hardware wallet must be connected to your computer, phone, or tablet before coins may be spent.

The two most popular and best Bitcoin and cryptocurrency hardware wallets are:

Hardware wallets are a good choice if you’re serious about security and convenient, reliable Bitcoin & crypto storage.

Hardware wallets keep private keys separate from vulnerable, internet-connected devices.

Your all-important private keys are maintained in a secure offline environment on the hardware wallet, fully protected even should the device be plugged into a malware-infected computer.

As bitcoins and cryptocurrencies are digital, cyber-criminals could, potentially, target your computer’s “software wallet” and steal them by accessing your private key.

Generating and storing private keys offline using a hardware wallet ensures that hackers have no way to reach your coins.

Hackers would have to steal the hardware wallet itself, but even then, it can be protected with a PIN code.

Don’t worry about your hardware wallet getting stolen, lost or damaged either; so long as you create a secret backup code, you can always retrieve your coins.

The Ledger Nano S is one example of a hardware wallet

Why are hardware wallets good?

Easiest way to securely store bitcoins and other coins
Easy to backup and secure
Less margin for error; setup is easy even for less technical users

 

Why are hardware wallets bad?

They’re not free!

 

Hot Wallets

Hot wallets are wallets that run on internet connected devices like a computer, mobile phone, or tablet.

Private keys are secret codes. Because hot wallets generate your private keys on an internet connected device, these private keys can’t be considered 100% secure.

Why are hot wallets good?

Easiest way to store small amounts of bitcoin and crypto
Convenient; spending and receiving payments is easy and fast
Some hot wallets allow access to funds across multiple devices

 

Why are hot wallets bad?

Not safe for the secure storage of large amounts of bitcoins and crypto

 

Which Wallet is Best for You?

Why are you using Bitcoin & Crypto?

Investing or saving? Then a hardware wallet will keep your coins safe.

Otherwise, a software wallet will send and receive bitcoins & crypto just fine. Best of all, software wallets are free.

Each wallet has pros and cons, and different wallets are built to solve different problems.

Here is a video that may help:

Some wallets may be geared towards security, while some wallets may be more focused on privacy.

Your specific needs should determine the wallet you use, as there is no “best bitcoin wallet”.

Below, we've listed wallets you can buy or download

We suggest using the wallets listed or doing research before buying or downloading any wallet.

Each day, new Bitcoin scam wallets are added to the Google Play Store and Apple app store that are designed to steal peoples’ bitcoins.

We only list wallets that have published and open-sourced their code.

Chapter 3

Hardware Wallets: Keep Your Coins Safe

Hardware wallets aren’t free.

The three most popular hardware wallets: KeepKey, Ledger Nano S, and Trezor.

But the price can be worth it if you own a significant amount of coins. A hardware wallet will protect a few hundred in bitcoin/crypto just as effectively as a few million.

How Hardware Wallets Work

Hardware wallets are secure, offline devices. They store your private keys offline so they can’t be hacked.

This means you can even use one on a malware infected computer.

Why A Hardware Wallet with a Screen is Important

In the table below, you’ll notice we show which hardware wallets have screens.

Screens provide extra security by verifying and displaying important wallet details. Since the hardware wallet is nearly impossible to hack, its screen is more trustworthy than data displayed on your computer.

Bitcoin & Crypto Hardware Wallet Comparison

Check the table below for a quick comparison. Note:

We also did a detailed comparison of the three main ones: Ledger Nano S, Trezor, and KeepKey.

The three most popular hardware wallets: KeepKey, Ledger Nano S, and Trezor.

Why was purchasing bitcoins with a credit card once difficult?

Credit card payments are reversible. Actually, merchants don’t receive the money from credit card payments until ~60 days after a card is swiped.

Because Bitcoin transactions are irreversible, it’s risky for a merchant to sell bitcoins for CC payments. Companies have found new ways to prevent fraud and thankfully this has made it much easier to buy with a CC, as evidenced by the many options listed above

 WalletScreenReleasedPriceBuy
Ledger Nano S
2019$119
Ledger Nano X2016$59
TREZOR One2018$165
TREZOR T2013$78
KeepKey2015$79

Pro Tip

Do you want to buy larger amounts of bitcoins? Try buying with a bank account and you’ll save on fees.

Is it risky giving up my ID in order to buy?

It depends how much you trust the exchanges. Just like any information you give up online, there is always the risk that it can be hacked or stolen from the website you give it to.

One thing that Bitcoin exchanges have going for them is that because they are constantly under attack, they have some of the best security and protections in place to protect against the hacking of your personal info.

There is always risk with anything related to information online. Even Yahoo was hacked and information on 400 million accounts was stolen.

What’s the deal with Wells Fargo and buying with credit card?

On June 11, 2018 there were reports that Wells Fargo blocked all its customers credit cards from buying BTC. However, this is not a huge deal as most credit cards have already been blocked by Visa and Mastercard from buying bitcoins since January/February. Wells Fargo likely took another step, although the bank said they may allow purchases of cryptocurrency again down the line.

How do I determine the best way to buy?

The best way is to read through the description for each exchange. Make sure you find one that supports your country and has fees that you’re okay with. You’re also free to try multiple exchanges to see which you like using the best.

RECOMMENDATION

Do you want to buy bitcoins more privately? Try buying bitcoins with cash instead.

Can you Buy Less than One Bitcoin?

Yes, it is possible to buy less than one bitcoin.

Each bitcoin is divisible to the 8th decimal place, meaning each bitcoin can be split into 100,000,000 pieces. Each unit of bitcoin, or 0.00000001 bitcoin, is called a satoshi.

how to buy bitcoin with paypal

When buying Bitcoin, you don’t have to buy a full bitcoin and can easily buy less than one.

Most Bitcoin exchanges will let you specify the amount of fiat currency you want to spend and in exchange sell you the equivalent amount of Bitcoin. For example, if one bitcoin is worth $250, and you want to buy $125 worth of bitcoin, you’ll receive 0.50 bitcoin–assuming there are no fees.

Vice-versa, most Bitcoin brokers also let you specify the amount of bitcoin you want and will charge you the equivalent in fiat. For example, if you want to buy 0.25 bitcoin and 1 bitcoin is $300, you’ll be charged $75.

So, yes, it’s 100% possible to buy less than one bitcoin. Companies like Coinbase will let you buy as little as $1 worth of bitcoin.

Should I leave my bitcoins on the exchange after I buy?

We really recommend storing any bitcoins you want to keep safe in a wallet you own. Many Bitcoin exchanges have been hacked and lost customer funds. If you don’t want to fall victim to these hacks then the easiest way is to store your coins in a wallet you control.

Can you sell bitcoins?

Out of the exchanges we listed, CEX.io is the only one that allows you to sell bitcoins to your credit card.

Will the fees for buying bitcoins with debit card or credit card ever get lower?

Probably not. Payment processors like Visa, Mastercard and American Express charge at least 2.9% per transaction. So any exchange selling bitcoins for CC payments is always going to pass this fee off to you, plus charge a bit more to make a profit. The fees could get lower if some exchange cuts a deal with a credit card processing company to get lower fees.

Can I buy other cryptocurrency using this method?

Depends on the exchange. Coinbase, for example, allows you to buy litecoins and Ethereum with credit card. Coinmama, on the other hand, supports Bitcoin, litecoin, ether and cardano.

If you want to buy lesser-known cryptos you can always buy bitcoins using the methods above and trade them for altcoins on another exchange like Binance, Changelly, Kraken or Poloniex.

Why do I have to buy bitcoins with credit card in order to buy other cryptocurrencies?

This is because most other cryptocurrencies are traded against Bitcoin. The liquidity for altcoins against the US dollar is often very poor. But on the other hand, the liquidity against BTC is usually very good. So it’s easy to get other currencies once you have bitcoins, but not easy to get other currencies without having BTC first.

Can you buy bitcoin with credit card at Walmart?

Although many people want to do this, it’s not possible to buy bitcoin at Walmart with a credit card, debit card or any other form of payment.

Did banks ban buying cryptocurrency with credit card?

In the USA, some banks are blocking users from buying cryptocurrency on credit. Debit cards appear to still be working. European users still appear to be able to buy crypto with a credit card. The US banks essentially felt as people were getting a cash advance since crypto is usable instantly and is basically like cash.

Why are some exchanges missing from your list?

We don’t want to overwhelm people, so we’ve hand selected what we believe to be the best exchanges available. You can use the home page tool to narrow down more exchanges.

Chapter 5

Exchange Comparison

A quick comparison of credit/debit card exchanges. These cover nearly every country in the world.

Buy Bitcoin with Credit/Debit Card at These Exchanges

 ExchangeFeesID RequiredCountries
LocalBitcoins1%SometimesGlobal
BitQuick2%YesUSA
Wal of Coins~1%No12 Countries
LibertyX1.5-8%YesUSA

Please note that fees are approximate and may vary based on your country or purchase size.

Chapter 6

Theft, Scams, and Storage

If you get one thing from this article let it be this:

Don’t store your bitcoins on exchanges!!!

Ledger Nano         Ledger Nano S     TREZOR T             TREZOR One

 

Bitcoin – What It Is, How To Use It And Bitcoin Wallets

As the world marks 10 years from the collapse of the Lehman Brothers Investment Bank, it becomes more relevant to think of Bitcoin. The reason for the statement is that after the collapse of the Lehman Brothers, Banks stopped lending to their peers and other financial entities for fear that the institutions had issued bad loans in the asset bubble burst. This created widespread panic, a credit crunch and consequential collapse of the financial system. In the midst of the turmoil, Bitcoin concept came into being. In this regard, it is good to review some aspects about the disruptive cryptocurrency.

 

KeepKey

What Is Bitcoin

Bitcoin is a protocol of a distributed network. This network manages a ledger of accounts of BTC, the network’s proof of work indicator, commonly known as the token. However, most people use the term Bitcoin interchangeably to refer to both the token (BTC) and the distributed ledger network.

Bitcoin was created by Satoshi Nakamoto, a software developer. The original concept was to create a substitute of the conventional currency that at the time, seemed to be elusive in the crippling 2008 Financial Crisis. The features of Bitcoin are:

The Token Supply is Scarce

The original plan is to create 21 million BTC tokens. This is done through the mining process where people download the Bitcoin software on their powerful computers called “nodes” and then solve mathematical processes. The process involves predicting numbers on a block until the program accepts the code and completes the transaction by assigning the BTC to the correct guess. The process is very hard but rewarding as the correct guess earns 12.5 BTC, a figure that reduces by half in a 4-year period.

Immutability

Bitcoin Blockchain is decentralized and the interactions are managed on the peer-to-peer level or individual basis in regards to mining. In this case, there is no reversal of transactions.

Why Banks Stopped Customers From Buying Bitcoin With Credit Card

At the beginning of 2018, Banks became weary of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency exchange. The banks expressed their dissatisfaction with Bitcoin by banning the use of credit cards in buying the BTC and other digital assets. Coincidentally, during the time, Bitcoin and other tokens had lost over half of their value. For instance, Bitcoin had slid from $20,000 in December 2017 to new lows of $8,000 as at mid-February 2018.

The first banks to issue the ban in the US were; the Bank of America, Discover, Citigroup, Capital One, JP Morgan, etc. On the other side of the Atlantic, other banks in the UK such as Lloyds, Virgin Money, and others have followed suit. The ban has since spread as Central/Reserve/National banks prohibit the trade in swift regulatory measures. The reasons for the bans are as follows:

The Risk was High

The volatility of cryptocurrency prices means that a high Bitcoin consumption could result in losses and plunge many borrowers into financial distress. This scenario would give rise to bad loans and directly expose banks to liabilities from non-performing or bad credit. One particular research by Lloyds showed that credit cards that were used in buying Bitcoin had higher than average rates of payment defaults.

Discouraging Money Laundering

Banks are responsible for monitoring their clients to ascertain whether there is any form of money laundering going on. However, when clients use credit cards in purchasing Bitcoin, they elude the monitoring system as credit money is usually legitimate, they then service their loans with the laundered money and the cycle continues. It was, therefore, necessary to curb money laundering that was happening through the use of cryptocurrencies and credit cards.

Other factors such as lack of cryptocurrency regulations, weak macroeconomic environments, and uncertainties in the digital assets’ markets may have also played a part in the ban issuance.

Why You Need A Bitcoin Wallet/What It Is

A Bitcoin wallet is a secure virtual environment for storing Bitcoin keys and receiving the BTC. The key in the wallet is used in accessing Bitcoin address. Note that the recipient’s key and the sender’s key is what is required in completing a Bitcoin transaction.

Accessing Bitcoin address is crucial to Bitcoin transactions such as sending the BTC on peer-to-peer transactions in e-commerce, or even exchanging the BTC for other cryptocurrencies or fiat money. There are several types of wallets. In selecting the appropriate one for your use, there are factors that you have to consider such as security, convenience, practicability, control, and anonymity.

You will find out that you need a wallet as Bitcoin is a decentralized distributed ledger network where each user is responsible for keeping account of their tokens. Further, no banks or institution offers solutions to storing the Bitcoin keys that are a must-have when accessing the Bitcoin address that contains specifics such as BTC balance, transaction encryptions, and other on-platform activities.

The various types of Bitcoin wallets to consider are:

Paper Wallet

The wallet is generated through the Bitaddress or the Bitcoinaddress. The wallet stores Bitcoin keys in the form of QR codes that are scanned for making a transaction.

Mobile Wallet

This is a form of a wallet that is accessed as a mobile phone app. It allows limited access of nodes on the Bitcoin blockchain for small BTC transactions. E.g. Jaxx, Bitcoin wallet, etc.

Desktop Wallet

The wallet applies the same principle as the mobile wallet. The only difference is the device, which in this case is a desktop computer or laptop. E.g. Electrum, CoPay, Bitcoin Core, etc.

Hardware Wallet

Hardware wallets are stored in portable and detachable computer hardware parts such as a USB stick, or external hard drive. It is easy to use and secure provided that the hardware has security futures such as passwords. E.g. Ledger Nano S, KeepKey, Trezor, etc.

What To Do With Bitcoin After You Buy It

Buying Bitcoin is becoming easy. If you are an institutional buyer, the CBOE and CME offer options arrangements to buy Bitcoin. Additionally, there are endless points of sale and even ATM machines where you can buy Bitcoin. On the other hand, as an individual buyer, all you need to have is money and access to any of the platform that offers Bitcoin for sale such as Crypto Exchanges, financial institutions, etc. Once you buy Bitcoin, you use the BTC for the following:

Buy Goods And Services

Many merchants are accepting Bitcoin. Companies such as Microsoft, Overstock, SurfAir, etc. accept BTC in exchange for goods or services. The good thing is that you could get better discounts on the purchases as Bitcoin is considered more valuable than the fluctuating fiat currencies that are prone to inflation or devaluation.

Bitcoin Buying Options

Bitcoin continues to be an ultimate investment choice due to the immense probabilities of gains. The options for buying the leading cryptocurrency are diverse:

Credit Transactions

Although most Banks do not authorize the use of credit cards to buy Bitcoins, some credit card providers whose sole business is to offer credit are flexible and offer the service. If you are considering using your credit card to acquire Bitcoins, you can follow the steps below:

• Find the Best Bitcoin Marketplace such as Coinbase, Coinmama, Bitpanda, etc.

• Sign up an account

• Connect to your credit card

• Trade your local currency in the card

• Transfer the Bitcoin into a secure wallet

The credit card transactions, however, attract fees that average 3.75% that is considerably expensive. Moreover, the credit purchase can be considered as cash advances that may attract higher fees making the transaction expensive. However, the credit card can increase the credit line if the exchange is considered as a purchase to enable you to spend more on Bitcoin exchange.

Debit Card Transactions

The protocol for debit card transactions in Bitcoin purchases is almost similar to credit card transactions. The steps are the same, as you have to open an account in your preferred exchange and follow the process as outlined under credit card transactions. The only difference is that you are to select the debit card option as opposed to credit card selection.

Under this category, the fees are usually lower than on credit cards. The only major hurdle is that your bank may not be allowing Bitcoin transactions due to regulatory or precautionary measures that are being adopted in almost all countries in the world.

Cash Solutions

There is a Bitcoin ATM that offers one-stop solutions to people with cash who want to buy Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies. The machines are places in people’s businesses, malls or high traffic areas that accessible to the public. However, a prerequisite for buying BTC is that you have to have a wallet from which you can directly deposit the BTC after the cash purchase. The machine is convenient, easy to use, and safe as the risk of being scammed is almost zero. The safety factor is underpinned d y the fact that the machines operate under KYC regulations as per the jurisdiction of operation.

Online Money Transactions

Online money is different from digital cash. The difference is that online money is fiat money denoted by online codes such as numbers, etc. On the other hand, the digital cash represents tokens such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, etc. that are generated through mining, in addition to being decentralized and supporting private transactions. In this regard, the option for online money in Bitcoin transaction is possible through various platforms.

PayPal

The PayPal platform enables you to buy Bitcoins within Bitcoin exchange platforms such as Virtual World Exchange (Virwox), eToro, Cryptex24 Exchange, xCoins P2P Bitcoin Lending, and many other crypto market platforms. To complete a transaction, you will need to have an account of Second Life Linden Dollars (SLL)-the currency for the virtual world.

The PayPal platform has recently applied for a patent right on the Expedited Virtual Currency Transaction System (EVCTS). This means that the BTC can be bought in the Virtual world mainly for speculative purposes. Additionally, the EVCTS allows instant transaction time frames as the PayPal platform supports the creation of “mini wallets” to act as blocks for authorizing transactions that support BTC exchange.

Other Similar Platforms are:

  • Google Wallet
  • Skrill
  • Intuit

Conclusion

Bitcoin continues to be a major investment both as an asset and a cryptocurrency. With such a potential, it is worthwhile to consider aspects of Bitcoin such as its history, payment options, biggest scams in history and the wallet.