The advent of Bitcoin in 2008 introduced a new chapter to the world of digital technology. Not only has the concept of Blockchain freed us from the grip of financial institutions and conventional currencies, it has instilled the masses with a sense of self-governance and autonomy that they always needed. However, everything comes with a set of pro and cons, and if there is anything we can learn from history, it is that some of the biggest Bitcoin thefts in terms of value, such as Bitfinex Hack (11956 BTC), Linode (46703 BTC), Bitstamp (19000 BTC) vouch for the fact that investing in Bitcoin is, indeed, a risky affair. This is where we witnessed the intersection of mobile app development companies with blockchain startups, as there have been many cryptocurrency wallets and exchanges that have been created in the past few years that allow blockchain users to store or trade cryptocurrencies, securely.
But then if you take a closer look at these incidents, you will find that most of the times, hackers went for Bitcoin exchanges, and not wallets. And the reason behind that is, because of the high trading volumes and high liquidity; hackers can slip away with a rack of money in a single raid, compared to other sources. Thus, instead of exchanges, you should always use a wallet to store your Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies.
To help you choose the best cryptocurrency wallet to safeguard your Bitcoin, here is a list of top 10 hardware and software wallets that are secure, reliable and offer great functionality:
Nano Ledger S
Good things come at a price; and with a €58 price tag, Nano Ledger S with FIDO Universal Second Factor authentication, is quite a safe hardware option to park your Bitcoin. Other than Bitcoin, the wallet can be used to store Ethereum, LiteCoin and many other cryptocurrencies. To ensure utmost security, Nano Ledger S allows you to set up a PIN code and also generates a recovery phrase to let you get your cryptocurrency back, in case you lose the device. With Nano Ledger S, one can manage accounts, send and receive cryptocurrencies using the desktop or mobile app that come with a pretty simple interface.
Another credible option for storing bitcoins is the much-popular Mycelium, which is a Hierarchical Deterministic Bitcoin wallet that facilitates managing multiple accounts, and unlimited private key generation, thus, ensuring better security. One of the few wallets with a BIP38 key support, Mycelium also enables users to create paper wallets. For a private and faster connection with the Bitcoin network, one can use super nodes capable of creating instant connections. Integrated with popular hardware wallets like Trezor, KeepKey and more, Mycelium is one of the most preferred choices for storing bitcoins.
Blockchain.info is known for two things: its mobile app wallet and its website wallet, which also allows you to check cryptocurrency transaction details. And because the website is one of the most credible sources for blockchain information (as the name itself suggests), Blockchain.info wallet was readily adopted by people as soon as it was released. Blockchain.info app can be used to manage both Bitcoin and Ethereum through desktop and mobile app. This one also comes with a 12-word recovery phrase for easy recovery of Bitcoin in case of a functional failure, and a Google authenticator with 2-step verification, which is quite a unique feature in this wallet. For advanced security, Blockchain.info offers Login IP Restriction (allowing only your personal devices to log in to your wallet), brute force password protection and protection from Tor networks that hackers often use to access wallets.
The reason why some users chose to continue using Electrum wallet is that it has a very user-friendly and comprehensive interface. At service since 2011, the unique thing about Electrum is that it is decentralized, which means no one owns it, and at the same time, everyone owns it. Another benefit of decentralization in case of Electrum is that it doesn’t go down anytime, because the servers are distributed, which means you can transact without the fear of a transaction getting late. But then, expect the usual latency. This one as well has a secret phrase which can be used to recover passwords. Also, the servers at Electrum are dedicated, which results in faster indexing, hence, low latency transactions and higher throughout for the same Bitcoin blockchain. Allowing you to use the same private key for other Bitcoin clients, this wallet also has no lock-in, and keeps your private keys offline for even more security.
Quite popular in Asia, Unocoin is a wallet-cum-cryptocurrency exchange that allows one to trade and store Bitcoin. At present, Unocoin deals only in Bitcoin, and plans to trade Ether in future. The wallet has a much segmented design and has two separate sections to keep your traditional cash and cryptocurrencies in an organized and concise way. You can keep your traditional cash ready in the currency section and use it to buy cryptocurrencies anytime. So, basically, faster exchanges are the core feature of Unocoin. In terms of security, Unocoin has earned a reputation in the market with a slew of security protocol it uses, such as AES-256 keys, which are safely kept in different locker locations. Other than that, it also comes with Google Authenticator, popularly known as 2-step verification. In simpler words, every time you login, you will need to enter the secondary code or a one-time password to enter your wallet and be able to spend funds. And when signing up, keep your personal information and official ID ready, because the wallet, of course for better security, requires you to prove your identity. It is because of these security measures that we have included Unocoin in the list, despite being the fact that it is a crypto exchange.
One of the few multi-currency wallet, Xapo is among the most downloaded cryptocurrency wallets in the world. Xapo started with a website-based wallet, which quickly gathered enough positive responses to start a mobile wallet. Instant transfer and easy payment system are the striking features of this wallet as debit cards are also accepted here for buying cryptocurrencies. Interestingly, using Xapo’s debit card system, you can also buy Bitcoin through Bitcoin ATMs around the world. The reason why more than a hundred thousand people use Xapo is that it has faster and optimized interface for buying and selling cryptocurrencies, and at the same time, it has low fees.
So these were some of the best cryptocurrency wallets that you can instantly start using by downloading through Google Play Store or App Store. And in the wake of the threats that surround the world of blockchain, we would suggest you to immediately get one if you already hold cryptocurrencies.