The Best Bitcoin Wallets of 2021: A Comprehensive Review
The interest in Bitcoin is currently at an all-time high, thanks to the cryptocurrency breaking all its previous records by the end of 2020. With the crypto hovering close to the record $50000-mark, interest among investors to acquire the asset has also increased which is reinforced by the bullish sentiment exhibited by traders on the market. As new investors move to become part of the crypto community, the interest in wallet solutions to store and manage cryptocurrencies has also gained prominence.
There are a variety of crypto wallets available out there, and each one of them comes with its own sets of advantages and disadvantages. The wallet solutions can be broadly classified into two types – hardware wallets and software wallets. While hardware wallets are the safest option to store cryptocurrencies, they need to be purchased, which involves an upfront cost. Meanwhile, blockchain wallet applications are mostly free and considerably secure. Some of these applications also offer additional features to suit the diverse needs of the crypto community.
This article presents few bitcoin wallets that not only offer safe storage but also packs few unique features that help users manage their crypto portfolio more effectively.
One of the best bitcoin wallets of 2021, YouHodler is the most advanced of the lot which not only provides users with a secure way of storing funds but also allows them to earn an interest of up to 12% APR on crypto assets. Apart from Bitcoin, the wallet application also supports multiple crypto and stablecoins including the likes of ETH, LINK, USDC, USDT, TUSD, PAXG, PAX, HUSD, BUSD, DAI, EURS and more. YouHodler combines the flexibility of usage with security, exchange features, and the earning potential of DeFi solutions.
Available for desktops as well as Android and iOS-powered mobile devices, the YouHodler wallet also enables users to avail crypto-backed loans from within the application. Further enhancing the experience, YouHodler also offers additional protection to funds stored in its wallets through Ledger Vault’s pooled customized crime insurance program. Led by Arch UK Llyods of London syndicate, the insurance covers crypto assets worth up to $150 million against risks including employee theft caused by collusion and third-party theft of private keys/master seed in the event of a physical breach of hardware security.
As an all-in-one app, the YouHodler bitcoin wallet allows users to purchase crypto, convert one currency to another with the universal conversion tool at a low conversion rate of 0.5%, and crypto multiplication tools like Turbocharge and Multi HODL for earning interest on deposits. It also supports fiat deposits and withdrawals through bank cards and wire transfers for buying and selling cryptocurrencies. While the platform doesn’t charge for any deposits, there is a small withdrawal fee applicable for fiat and certain cryptocurrencies. However, Bitcoin users don’t have to worry as all crypto deposits and withdrawals are completely free for them.
2. Ledger Nano S
Ledger Nano S is a popular hardware wallet ideal for those who are only concerned about the security of their crypto funds and don’t mind paying a small amount to purchase the device. Ledger Nano S is the first as well as the least priced among all the Ledger hardware devices, costing about $59.
Capable of supporting around 1500 different crypto assets including ERC20, ERC721, TRC10, TRC20, BEP2 and NEP5 token types, Ledger Nano S offers users a quick way to make payments while providing the highest levels of security. Some of the other features offered by the device include auto-lock and advanced passphrase security as additional layers of security. It can also be interfaced with desktop and mobile phones using the Ledger Live desktop and mobile phone to perform transactions. Meanwhile, like all the wallets, the Ledger Nano S also has a recovery phrase, that can be accessed on its display, to be noted down and stored in a secure place in order to ensure control over the funds stored in the wallet. Users can also verify and approve transactions using the built-in interface on the device.
While Ledger Nano S is capable of supporting a range of crypto assets, there is a constraint on how many assets one can manage at any given time. In order to use the device with various cryptocurrencies, users will have to set it up using compatible apps for the respective tokens. But the limited availability of storage space on the hardware can accommodate only up to 6 applications. So, those who deal with many cryptos will either have to procure multiple devices or go for other variants of the Ledger hardware wallet. Overall, Ledger Nano S is a great, value-for-money device for new crypto users.
Electrum Bitcoin Wallet is one of the popular open-source wallet applications that has been around for a long time. It is a no-nonsense software that works flawlessly with the Bitcoin network by connecting to any of the multiple supported servers. With easy set-up and support for the creation of multiple Bitcoin wallets over the same desktop application, Electrum is the quickest way to start using Bitcoin. However, the simplicity and speed offered by the wallet take a toll on privacy as network information of users is not completely masked from the servers one connects to execute transactions.
Electrum allows users to select between Legacy and SegWit wallets during creation and supports almost all types of private keys and recovery phrases available for Bitcoin wallets. It is also compatible with hardware wallets.
Security features offered by Electrum includes two-factor authentication and multisig wallet types, along with the ability to save and export wallet seed and private keys in an encrypted format to prevent unauthorized access and easy recovery of funds in case something goes wrong with the software or if needed to be installed or accessed on a different device.
Exodus is a strong contender in the Bitcoin wallet space, as its use is not just limited to one cryptocurrency but a host of different tokens. It is a multi-device, multi-chain online blockchain wallet available for use on Windows, Mac, Android and iOS powered desktop and mobile devices. In addition, Exodus also connects with Trezor hardware wallet, allowing users to securely manage their crypto assets.
The Exodus wallet currently supports over 125 different cryptocurrencies, including ERC20 and other token types belonging to some of the leading crypto projects. The wallet application is complemented by a couple of crypto apps that enable users to stake certain tokens and earn rewards.
When it comes to security, the wallet is protected by an additional 6-digit PIN. Users are always in control of their private keys, and the wallet itself can be backed up or restored using a 12-word mnemonic.
For starters, Kraken is not really a cryptocurrency wallet, but a crypto exchange and trading platform. As a centralized trading platform, users can acquire, trade, and store their crypto assets in their respective accounts on the platform. However, using any centralized platform to store crypto assets is not advisable, it may prove to be an easy option initially for those who are new to cryptocurrencies until they become familiar with regular, more secure hardware and software wallets.
Kraken offers various trading as well as staking features for its users. In terms of security, it has established a strong, trustworthy infrastructure that assures the safety of not just the stored crypto assets but also the personal and accounting information of its users. Other features include 2FA, SSL encryption, and more.
One thing to keep in mind while using centralized exchanges and wallets is that the user may not be always in control of the funds held in their accounts.
These 5 wallets represent different categories of Bitcoin wallets and are among the best in their respective spaces. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t other good ones out there. Users can always try different Bitcoin wallet apps and stick to the ones they find convenient to operate.