Cryptocurrency is a confusing subject. Knowing how and where to properly store your crypto can be even more frustrating.
Personally, I have experience using both exchanges and hardware wallets. Primarily I have experience with Coinbase and the Ledger Nano S, which I will be discussing today in this brief article.
Let’s compare the two.
Safety and Security
We’re starting to come out of the “Wild West” phase of cryptocurrencies. Crypto exchanges are becoming more sophisticated, and somewhat regulated, which gives users more peace of mind. However, you can’t rest easy just yet.
Hackers target these exchanges as the security is not foolproof yet. Moreover, these exchanges don’t have much recourse with insurance agencies and governments to go after these hackers. Their own their own.
This is why you must store your cryptos offline. Get your hands on a wallet like the Ledger Nano S.
I currently have my hardware wallet stored in a safe. It’s not that laborious to get access it, but it is not accessible as having the coins stored digitally. Instead of carrying around the wallet with me, Coinbase and Poloniex allows me to use these funds from anywhere it the world. I can also do it quickly, instead of jumping through hoops to get the funds off my wallet.
Coinbase is the winner here.
Buying and Selling
Coinbase is an exchange. It exists to allow easy access for users to buy and sell cryptocurrencies.
The Ledger is not designed for this. It is designed to safely store your cryptocurrencies.
If you don’t use an exchange to buy and sell coins, you’re life is going to be a lot more difficult.
The easy winner here is Coinbase.
Freedom and Privacy
The entire point of cryptocurrency was to create a decentralized currency outside the realm of the government and big banks. Well, that’s not happening, as far as Bitcoin is concerned.
Coinbase was ordered to provide information on over 14,000 accounts to the IRS. So much for anonymity!
When you use an exchange like Coinbase, those transactions are being tracked. Sure you could get away with not reporting it, but then you’re taking your chances with the Feds.
However, if you do not use an exchange to get a hold of Bitcoin, and keep your coins on the Ledgers Nano S, you’ll stay outside the reach of the government. If privacy and freedom is your concern, then avoid exchanges as much as possible and keep your holdings offline.
The Winner Is…
Coinbase and the Ledger Nano S, while both designed to send and store cryptos, are better suited for different purposes.
Coinbase should be used for buying and selling.
The Ledger for storage.
If you want to succeed in the cryptocurrency game you need both a quality exchange and a quality wallet.
The Ledger is definitely a quality hardware wallet and I would highly recommend it.
Coinbase, on the other hand, is not an amazing exchange. Personally, I am satisfied with it. It allowed me to seamlessly get into the crypto game. That said, there are numerous complaints about Coinbase I’ve heard from users including:
- High Fees.
- Conveniently being down during massive drops in prices.
- Small selection of coins.
- Cooperating with the IRS, in that they can turn over your personal information over to the government.
I plan on keeping my Coinbase account, as it allows me to by the big, “large-cap” coins with ease. Coinbase is also safe and secure. However, for trading purposes it is not ideal. I’ve heard good things about Binance and may join the club over there.
Do your own research though.
If you are a beginner though, I do recommend starting with Coinbase. You can use my link below and get $10 free when you buy more than $100 worth of Bitcoin. (I will get $10 free too!)
Or if you want to get the Ledger Nano S click here.