A bitcoin wallet is the first thing that you need before buying or selling digital assets. The wallets are designed differently but they all serve the common goal of allowing you to store, receive and send cryptocurrencies. Of course, some of them offer a lot more than that.
With hundreds of wallets at your disposal, it may be difficult to find a Bitcoin wallet that best suits your needs. But don’t worry. That’s precisely why we’ve prepared this article that reviews the best Bitcoin wallets in 2019: Coinbase, Blockchain.com, Crypterium, Luno, and BTC.com.
Some of these wallets target certain markets while others only support a limited amount of digital assets. These factors should guide you on how to choose a Bitcoin wallet effectively.
Coinbase Wallet Review
San Francisco-headquartered Coinbase is one of the biggest exchanges in the United States and extends its brokerage services to over 30 countries in the world. To date, it is the largest bitcoin broker worldwide with a valuation above $1 billion.
The Coinbase Wallet is a user-custodied cryptocurrency wallet and DApp browser. In other words, all private keys are stored in your devices. The wallet is available on both iOS and Android devices. This solution includes secure enclave and biometric authentication technology to protect private keys from security threats.
The wallet is compatible with Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ethereum (ETH), Ethereum Classic (ETC), Litecoin (LTC), ERC-20 and ERC-721 assets. Apart from storing these digital currencies, the wallet also allows you to participate in airdrops and token sales (ICOs), and transfer cryptocurrency to other Coinbase Wallet users instantly.
This mobile cryptocurrency wallet isn’t linked to Coinbase Consumer (also known as Coinbase Exchange), meaning you don’t need an exchange account to get a wallet. Unlike the exchange, which allows users to buy and sell cryptocurrencies in certain countries, the wallet doesn’t have geographical restrictions. In other words, you can get one anywhere in the world.
The wallet can be accessed from a web browser or downloaded to mobile devices compatible with Android and iOS operating systems. While Coinbase is safe, users are urged to transfer their cryptocurrencies to their private wallets such as hardware wallets.
Coinbase offers what is known as Coinbase Vault for those that want to store large amounts of digital assets. It is a multisig wallet where the private keys are held by the company, the client, and the other is shared. The funds can be spent using two of the three private keys.
Pros and Cons of the Coinbase Wallet
Pros of Coinbase Wallet:
- High liquidity coupled with high purchasing limits
- User-friendly to new users
- Credit card back up option for instant purchases
Cons of Coinbase Wallet:
- Limited support of payment methods
- Not able to purchase/cash out in all countries
- No crypto purchases available
Blockchain Wallet Review
The Blockchain Wallet is considered to be one of the most popular and oldest cryptocurrency wallets in the market. It was first launched back in 2011 and has been providing Bitcoin and Ethereum storage ever since. The Luxembourg-based platform is accessible via desktop, as well as iOS and Android mobile devices.
Blockchain.com has years of experience in the crypto space and serves millions of holders worldwide. While this isn’t the go-to wallet for high-volume cryptocurrency investors, it offers an easy-to-navigate interface that’s just perfect for entry-level users.
In terms of security, Blockchain.com upgraded its wallet’s safety features by becoming hierarchical deterministic in 2016, which guarantees blockchain addresses are not used more than once.
At the time of writing, the Blockchain Wallet supports Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ether (ETH), Stellar (XLM), and USD PAX (PAX)
The Blockchain Wallet allows users in certain countries to buy and sell cryptocurrencies, mostly SEPA nations. At the moment, non-SEPA countries have no access to this wallet service.
In terms of the Blockchain Wallet fees, it’s worth differentiating two types of transaction fees, static and variable. The fee for sending Ether (ETH) is static, meaning it will not change on quantity. On the other hand, fees for sending Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, and Stellar depend on the amount you want to transfer.
The wallet security is built on a three-tier infrastructure that goes from simple passphrase access to two-factor authentification and blocking IPs accessing through the TOR network, among other features.
When it comes to customer support, the Blockchain Wallet is sort of disappointing. There are tons of articles on the FAQ question, but this wallet offers no 24/7 live chat function like Crypterium.
Pros and Cons of the Blockchain Wallet
Pros of the Blockchain Wallet
- Hierarchical deterministic transactions
- Advanced security features
- Cryptocurrency purchases from the wallet
Cons of the Blockchain Wallet
- Limited range of currencies
- Not available in all countries
- No live support
Crypterium Wallet Review
Despite being one of the newest cryptocurrency wallets in the market, the Crypterium Wallet has quickly gained supporters all over the world thanks to the wide range of services it brings together. The wallet is available on a desktop version, and for iOS and Android devices.
Unlike most cryptocurrency wallets out there, the Crypterium Wallet has been able to combine popular crypto-to-crypto and crypto-to-fiat services into a single app. To date, customers are allowed to store, send, receive, buy, cash out, exchange and even spend cryptocurrencies without leaving the Crypterium Wallet.
Among the most distinctive features of this crypto wallet is ‘Send crypto by phone’. That’s right. Users only need to introduce the recipient’s phone number to transfer cryptocurrency instantly and commission-free. The recipients are always notified via SMS about the incoming transaction, even if they do not have an active Crypterium account.
Another interesting thing about the Crypterium Wallet is the range of supported digital currencies. In the last year, the wallet has added support for Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, USD Coin, Bitcoin Cash, and Ripple. The wallet also supports its ERC-20 token CRPT, which users can swap for BEP-2 with a 1:1 rate in case they wish to trade it on Binance DEX.
The exchange feature is perfect for those who don’t want to deal with messy exchange platforms. You can exchange crypto in a secure, straight-forward app with competitive rates. The Crypterium Wallet is integrated with the top 10 cryptocurrency exchanges and its AI-based bid-offer matching system picks the best rate for each transaction.
The Crypterium Wallet also offers a global cryptocurrency card – the Crypterium Card – that allows you to spend digital currencies in over 175 countries and withdraw in more than 2 million ATMs worldwide. The prepaid Bitcoin card is delivered everywhere, making it one of its kind. Coinbase offers a similar card but it’s only available in a handful of countries. All transactions are recorded in the Crypterium Wallet, and users can easily top it up, change their PIN, block/unblock, etc.
Pros and Cons of the Crypterium Wallet
Pros of the Crypterium Wallet
- Buy cryptocurrency with debit/credit card
- Cash outs to bank card in minutes
- Services are available worldwide
- Global cryptocurrency card
- Wide range of cryptocurrencies: BTC, BCH, XRP, ETH, LTC, USDC
Cons of the Crypterium Wallet
- Not all services launched yet
- Express cash outs only support MasterCard
- Maintenance periods aren’t scheduled
Luno Wallet Review
Luno was established in 2013 as BitX but rebranded to its current name in 2016. It has offices in several countries including the UK, Singapore, and South Africa.
The company raised more than $13 million from investors such as Digital Currency Group and Ventura Capital. The company serves over 2 million clients from nearly 40 countries.
Luno has carved its name in emerging markets and provides services to countries such as South Africa, Nigeria, Malaysia, and Indonesia.
Though Luno has competitive fees, they are confusing at times and requires users to check in advance how much they will pay in the end for their transactions.
Luno offers users a simple way to buy cryptocurrency by allowing you to purchase directly from the app although they will charge you a premium for that. The charges vary from country to country and it may not be easy to predict how much you will be charged for each transaction.
Luno provides a custodial wallet to its users and their app is available for both iOS and Android devices. To date, Luno supports Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Ethereum (ETH).
Luno allows users to buy cryptocurrencies in the following regions/countries: Europe, Indonesia, Malaysia, Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda, and Zambia.
To buy cryptocurrencies, users need to deposit funds on their Luno Wallet first. They can do so using debit/credit cards or bank transfers. The payment methods depend on location and the fees are different for each payment type.
The following fees are associated with Luno, including deposit, withdrawal, transaction and blockchain fees. These fees vary on the jurisdiction, as well as cryptocurrency.
Luno has several account levels tied to your identity verification (Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3). Each of these levels offers different deposit and withdrawal limits.
Luno is considered to be safe as it has never been on the receiving end of a major hack. They have included features such as 2FA and “disabling” the send feature.
Pros and Cons of the Luno Wallet
Pros of Luno Wallet:
- User-friendly mobile interface
- Easy to top up with debit/credit card/bank transfer
- Desktop version available
Cons of Luno Wallet:
- Not available in all countries
- Limited range of supported cryptocurrencies
- Low deposit/withdrawal limits
BTC.com Wallet Review
BTC.com is an open-source wallet that supports Bitcoin (BTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). This wallet was created in 2016 by one of the world’s largest makers of bitcoin mining equipment, Bitmain. The wallet not only allows users to store Bitcoin but also to send and receive using the web-based service or their Android and iOS devices.
The wallet is mainly focused on simplicity, which is reflected in the reduced number of features offered by it. BTC.com doesn’t allow customers to buy cryptocurrencies, a major disadvantage against other players like Blockchain.com or Crypterium.
This is an HD hybrid wallet, meaning that the keys are kept on your hardware. Users can register an account using their email address and setting a password only.
After registering for an account, the user is required to download a PDF recovery datasheet of their wallet. The wallet advises users to print out the document before safely storing it on digital places. This is more like creating a backup of a backup.
Sending and receiving BTC is very easy and quick due to a simple user interface and QR code reader. Overall, it has been deemed as a wallet for storing small amounts of digital currencies.
Pros and Cons of the BTC.com Wallet
Pros of BTC.com Wallet:
- Bitmain brand behind it
- Two-factor authentication (2FA) available
- Available in multiple languages
Cons of BTC.com Wallet:
- No cryptocurrency purchases
- Only supports BTC and BCH
- Limited features: store, send & receive
The Bottom Line
There many Bitcoin wallets and each of them is designed for different users. We have reviewed five of the best Bitcoin wallets in 2019 and the one you choose will depend on the digital currencies you want to manage, and where you are located.
Users in emerging markets such as South Africa may opt for Luno as it is specifically suited for these crypto holders while Coinbase might be preferred by Americans. Some users will prefer a truly global experience with solutions like Crypterium.
The five wallets above are strong on security and have not suffered major hacks in the past, making them a solid choice for cryptocurrency holders. Whatever your needs may be, there is always a Bitcoin wallet for you.
The question is: which one will it be?