Top 10 Best Bitcoin Wallets for 2018
If you’re a Bitcoin user, the first and probably most important step you need to take is to create a Bitcoin wallet. A wallet is what allows you to receive, send, store and spend your bitcoins.
But what is it really? Well, while the normal wallet analogy is a fitting portrayal of what a Bitcoin wallet does, there is so much more to it. A Bitcoin wallet is, therefore, more like a personal interface to the Bitcoin network that can be likened to an online bank account that is an interface to the regular banking or monetary system.
Bitcoin wallets are simply containers of private keys or secret codes that allow you to transact in Bitcoin. Therefore, in reality, it is not your bitcoins that are stored in the Bitcoin wallet, and instead it is the private keys that allow you to access these bitcoins that are.
In summary, a Bitcoin wallet is an app, a website or a hardware device that is used for managing Bitcoin private keys for Bitcoin users.
Types of Bitcoin Wallets
a) Hardware Wallets
These are physical electronic devices that are built specifically to secure private keys and they are also the best bitcoin wallets. Hardware wallets store your Bitcoin private keys offline which means that unless you are connected to the internet they cannot be stolen by hackers. The hardware wallets must be connected to computers with internet connections before they can be spent. Even though they are expensive, they are secure, convenient and reliable Bitcoin storages for users. These are also the most recommended type of Bitcoin wallets.
b) Software / Hot Wallets
These are Bitcoin wallets that exist online and can be used on internet-enabled devices such as computers, mobile phones, and tablets. Hot wallets are very convenient options for quickly sending, receiving and spending Bitcoin, but for storage of large amounts of cryptocurrency, you may need to find an extremely secure service or buy a hardware wallet.
The focus of this article is to present you with a some of the best wallets that you can use today and in the coming years. We tell you which Bitcoin wallet is the best and help pick the most secure Bitcoin wallet from a pool of only the top ranked ones.
This cryptocurrency wallet established itself by being one of the first multi-asset hardware wallets that was designed to resemble the familiar form of a foldable USB drive. Since its inception, it has been lauded for being the most secure Bitcoin wallet.
Ledger Nano S can store Ethereum, Bitcoin, and many other forms cryptocurrencies. It is very safe since transactions can only be confirmed when the hardware wallet is connected to an internet-enabled device via USB. It is also malware proof and rather inexpensive compared to many other hardware wallets.
This is the first Bitcoin wallet that has ShapeShift built into its interface in order to facilitate rapid conversion between various cryptocurrencies or altcoins – this makes it the most secure Bitcoin wallet we have come across. On top of that, Exodus prides itself in being a multi-asset wallet that lets users store their private keys in a single application which also happens to have a customizable user interface. Users of Exodus are given total control over the encrypted private keys on a Linux, Windows, and Mac.
Copay prides itself in being a secure shared Bitcoin wallet rather than just being a mere account service. Users can secure their personal bitcoin funds using either just one signature or if they wish, multiple signatures. Copay accounts can further take the form of joint-checking accounts and hence one account can have more than one user and to send money, each member of the group needs to approve the transaction.
Furthermore, being one of the first Bitcoin wallets that fully support the Bitcoin Payment Protocol (BIP 0070-0073), safety and reliability are guaranteed. For instance, when money is sent to a merchant who is also Bitcoin Payment Protocol-enabled, Copay guarantees through secure verification that the payment will be sent to the right destination.
This is the one of the best Bitcoin wallets available and it offers optimal performance on all platforms including Android, Windows and Apple devices. As such, it is pre-configured with Bitcoin’s core node and offers a plethora of features to its users. It is also very fast and quite user friendly, hence, beginners will definitely find it to be very useful. Also, the company behind this software wallet is pretty serious about transparency, thus making it a very secure program despite being a web-based wallet.
This was the first ever hardware cryptocurrency wallet, and to date it has shown a great deal of promise by being the ‘most private and anonymous’ Bitcoin wallet available. The industry-leading hardware device is quite easy to setup and use, hence its popularity – they even have an extension for Google Chrome browser that users can use to communicate with the hardware. It also integrates its safe and easy setup process with a token that is useful for authentication purposes and can also be used as a security key for the newer U2F authentication process. It is a highly recommended Bitcoin wallet.
Mycelium is one of the top 10 Bitcoin wallets and mobile apps in existence – it even won Blockchain.info’s prestigious “Best Mobile App” award. It offers its users the ability to send and receive bitcoin with the added advantage of being backed by bank-grade security.
The Android-based multi-asset cryptocurrency wallet further allows for integrations with hardware Bitcoin wallets such as KeepKey an Trezor – there are several unique features added into it to assist users in managing their private keys as well as the secret numbers that allows them to spend their bitcoins. Other than just integrating with existing hardware wallets, Mycelium has also developed its own hardware wallets and is pursuing the development of several decentralized applications that should be in use by mid-2018.
Supported in over 30 different countries, Coinbase is a reputable and well established cryptocurrency exchange. Coinbase offers virtual currency wallet services for both Bitcoin and Ehtereum, and was recently voted the ‘Best Bitcoin Wallet.’ The website itself is graced by an outstanding and very user-friendly interface. As it stands, the company has facilitated transactions of over $20 billion for more than 10 million of its users.
It is a unique Bitcoin wallet that will cater for or appeal more to individuals that are into a little more privacy than what other Bitcoin wallets have to offer. It is a completely decentralized wallet which means that your money cannot be accessed by either Blockchain.info or any other third-party company. They also offer a ton of other great features that are available for web and mobile – this makes it the perfect blend of anonymity and unique feature required by Bitcoin users.
Electrum is an open-source MultiSig Wallet that allows users to spend their bitcoin between several different cryptocurrency wallets. Even though the private keys are encrypted and are tied to your computer, you also have the liberty of exporting the private key. Its speeds are also pretty impressive and this is all thanks to its utilization of servers that directly index the Bitcoin blockchain.
As far as reliability is concerned, your Electrum wallet will never be down as the servers it uses are decentralized and redundant. Security is guaranteed as the company has also invested in cold storage facilities that are used to keep the private keys offline.
Like Bitcoin Core Wallet, BreadWallet is an open source Bitcoin wallet that is ideal for beginner thanks to its user-friendly interface. If you are just starting out with bitcoin, then this wallet is the best option you have as the learning curve is quite bearable and the site was designed with intuitiveness and ease-of-use in mind. It allows users to control their private keys and supports passcode features as well.