Bitcoin, as you know, is a virtual currency that came into being in 2009. The ideas that govern it comes from a white paper a Japanese developer Satoshi Nakamoto published that year. His identity remains a secret. Reports are that he uses pen-names when coming into the worldwide web.
Bitcoin offers a lower transaction fee when compared to its traditional counterparts. And it is a decentralized body that operates this currency. There exists no physical coin here. It is a sequence of private keys. Your Bitcoin balance is kept on a virtual ledger. You can also use wallets designed for the purpose.
What is a Bitcoin Wallet?
A Bitcoin wallet is your first step toward using Bitcoin currency. Wallets function in the same way as bank accounts. They let you receive Bitcoin currency and perform financial transactions with them. A Bitcoin wallet connects you to a network of computers in the same way as your online bank account connects you with the bank. Your wallet does not store coins but certain private keys. These keys let you access to a network of powerful computers that lets you send and receive Bitcoins. To conclude, a Bitcoin wallet is an application, a device or a website that lets you manage certain private keys.
Points to Remember When Choosing a Bitcoin Wallet
Keep the following points in mind when locating a wallet of this kind:
- Security: Your wallet should offer the security you need to store your private keys. You need to protect them from hackers to keep your storage of currency intact. You should have full control over the private keys you store.
- Backup and Security Features: Your choice wallet should have the mechanism to securely backup your private keys. Anything can happen to computers. Hard drive crash, the blue screen of death, virus; the list of disasters is endless. You have to make sure that your information stays safe irrespective of what happens to your phone or PC.
- Develop a Community: As mentioned above, it is a decentralized body that operates this currency. You will need a community of Bitcoin users to perform transactions here. Your favorite storage mechanism should have the feature to work along with a community.
- Ease of Use: The wallet should not cause any trouble. Transactions need to be fast. Thus you have to make sure that you know how to operate your wallet.
- Compatibility: Your choice wallet should be compatible with your device or computer.
Types of Bitcoin Wallets
Bitcoin wallets generally fall into the following categories:
Desktop Bitcoin Wallets – Best for Maintaining Your Privacy
These offer the highest security you can have when storing Bitcoins. You have to download software and install it on your computer. This may not work if you prefer to use your smartphone for the purpose. Besides, it may appear too technical to understand for a beginner in the field.
Mobile Bitcoin Wallets
These, as you know, offer the utmost You can add as many layers of safety as you choose. You will need to practice utmost caution when spending Bitcoins from your handheld device. Store just what you need. You can use other safer options to keep the rest.
Online Bitcoin Wallets – Access Your Bitcoin Wallet Digitally
These are fast, accessible and secure. Doing transactions here is a breeze. You can access them from wherever you are; all it requires is internet connectivity. However, protecting them, hackers may appear daunting. Combine it with a lack of information. It is highly recommended that you complement your online storage with a safer mechanism.
Hardware Bitcoin Wallets – Secure Storage for Bitcoin
These allow you full control over your Bitcoin storage. You have to connect it with a system when you need. These are the preferred modes of storage for well-informed users. You can store large amounts of Bitcoins here without having to worry about hackers.
Paper Bitcoin Wallets – Keep Your Bitcoin Addresses Safe
These too are favorites among Bitcoin users. They are safe from cyber thieves. They also let you have full control over your private keys. But there is no mechanism to recover information in the instance of loss or tampering of any kind. However, some services let you print your private keys on tamper-proof papers. Do your research and find the one that works for you.
Pick the Best Bitcoin Wallet as Per Your Needs
Given below are our top choices among Bitcoin wallets. They are secure, easy to access and offer maximum flexibility.
1. Mycelium – Best Mobile Bitcoin Wallet
Mycelium is the most-recommended mobile Bitcoin wallet. It boasts of bank-like features of security. You can get it completely free of cost from its official website. The features like watch-only accounts and hierarchical determinants set it above the competition.
2. Blockchain – Online Bitcoin Wallet
Building a Blockchain wallet is completely free of cost. It is the most preferred among online wallets. Blockchain features global support and is easy to operate. It works like a charm both on your phone and on your computer. But keeping your identity intact may appear daunting for a beginner here.
3. Ledger Nano X Hardware Wallet
Ledger Nano X is an affordable hardware wallet that resembles a USB. It will appear like a foldable drive and is hacker-proof. Ledger Nano X integrates with different software and is capable of running multiple applications. You can store up to 60 types of digital currencies in it. It works fine both on a mobile phone and on your desktop. below are the some supported coins:
- Bitcoin Cash
- Bitcoin Gold
- Egretia Token
- & many more
This hardware wallet available at $119 on the official website of Ledger.
4. Trezor Hardcore Wallet for Bitcoins
Trezor is a hardcore Bitcoin wallet millions trust. Simple to install and easy to operate, Trezor offers a disaster recovery mechanism. You may need to pay for the service. The more you are willing to pay, the safer your storage will remain. With the cost of $1665, the Trezor hardcore wallet support more than 500 coins such as:
- Bitcoin (BTC)
- Ethereum (ETH)
- Ripple (XRP)
- Tether (USDT)
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
- Litecoin (LTC)
- EOS (EOS)
- Stellar (XLM)
- Cardano (ADA)
- Monero (XMR)
- And Many more
5. Exodus – Best Desktop Bitcoin Wallet
Exodus is a mobile & desktop Bitcoin wallet capable of supporting up to 36 cryptocurrency. Ease of use and utmost security make it the best among desktop wallets. It pays the transaction fee directly to the network.
6. Atomic Cryptocurrency Wallet
Bitcoin users hail this wallet for the security and ease of use it offers. Choose your operating system and install the software. The wallet also features a regular exchange service.
7. Bitcoin Paper Wallet – Cold Storage Wallet for Your Bitcoins
Bitcoin Paper Wallet is the way for you if you prefer offline storage to its online variant. The website generates keys and helps you print them in tamper-free papers. Just make sure that you store these papers in a safe place. The wallet is free of cost. Still, you may be asked to donate a small amount to help the developers maintain the system. The website is also great for beginners. It features video tutorials on how to use your paper wallet.
8. GreenAddress – Free Online Bitcoin Wallet
GreenAddress is a free wallet. This is ideal for those concerned about the security of their Bitcoin storage. They watch it at regular intervals; logging in and logging off. This is dangerous if done using public Wi-Fi. GreenAdress resolves this issue. Its watch-only mode enables you to see your wallet without having to sacrifice security.
Bitcoin may not have the recognition its conventional counterparts enjoy. Still, it is affordable, secure and easy to use. All you need is the right kind of hardware and software. Share your opinion, which among all bitcoin wallets you prefer to use.