All About Bitcoin & Ethereum Mobile Wallets
Crypto wallets let you store and protect your cryptocurrency. There are different types of crypto wallets, including web wallets, desktop wallets and hardware wallets.
This resource will focus on crypto mobile wallets. Included is a description of the different types of wallets available for both Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Read: What Is a Crypto Wallet?
What’s a Crypto Mobile Wallet?
A crypto mobile wallet is an app on your phone that lets you interact with your cryptocurrency. You may be surprised to know your cryptocurrency is not stored on the physical device, but rather on the blockchain.
Your phone essentially acts as a gateway to your cryptocurrency. When you make a new wallet, you get a private key. Your private key is stored inside your wallet and lets you access your cryptocurrency stored on the blockchain.
Mobile wallets are available on the App Store for iOS users and the Google Play Store for Android users.
Why Use a Crypto Mobile Wallet?
Accessibility is the main benefit of a crypto mobile wallets. You can easily manage your cryptocurrency anytime, anywhere. All you need is an internet connection.
This helps you be more nimble and agile with your crypto holdings, all while ensuring their safety by virtually holding them in the palm of your hand.
There are plenty of things you can do with your cryptocurrency, such as:
- Send your cryptocurrency to other people and businesses in an efficient and timely manner.
- Stake your cryptocurrency.
- Participate in the governance of a given blockchain protocol.
- Deposit your cryptocurrency into a smart contract to earn interest.
Crypto mobile wallets’ enhanced accessibility and speed are things you just don’t get with a hardware wallet. However, it’s not recommended you carry large amounts of cryptocurrency in your mobile wallet.
Read: Store Cryptocurrency In Crypto Hardware Wallets
This is because mobile wallets are a relatively insecure storage option. They are easy to use and allow quick access to your holdings. However, they aren’t as secure as offline hardware wallets.
Having all your cryptocurrency in an online wallet, stored on a vulnerable device you carry around all day, is the equivalent of walking around with your savings account in your pocket. It’s just too risky.
To get the best of both worlds, store some of your cryptocurrency in your mobile wallet and the remainder in a hardware wallet.
Bitcoin Mobile Wallets
The case for having a Bitcoin mobile isn’t as strong as having one for another blockchain such as Ethereum. Simply put, there are not as many things you can do with bitcoin compared to Ethereum-based cryptocurrencies.
Most of the staking, interest-bearing smart contracts, and participation in the governance of a blockchain occurs on Ethereum rather than Bitcoin.
As a result, it’s widely recommended that you store bitcoin on a crypto hardware wallet rather than a mobile or web wallet. Nevertheless, there are bitcoin mobile wallet options.
With over 43 million wallets created, Blockchain Wallet is the most popular bitcoin mobile wallet—available on both iOS and Android devices at no cost.
Although it’s a free mobile wallet, you’ll pay “industry-leading low fees” on your transactions.
You’re in control of your private keys rather than a third party—with Blockchain Wallet heavily focused on security. The app allows for two-factor authentication (2FA), TOR blocking to keep out would-be hackers, and even a backup and recovery method in case something were to go awry.
A great feature of Blockchain Wallet is the ability to buy bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in-app.
Electrum is a highly reputable bitcoin wallet which is mainly used for desktop. They have a mobile version available for Android devices.
Just like their desktop wallets, Electrum focuses on speed and simplicity. They ensure you have full control over your bitcoin—meaning no third party can freeze or lose your funds—thanks to a simplified validation method when verifying payments.
Transparency is a focal point of Electrum’s developers, who have published the source code for the client—meaning anyone can audit the code. The app has strong privacy protections such as using rotating addresses and Tor support.
Electrum also gives you full control over fees. They give suggestions based on network activity and let you modify fees after funds are sent.
BRD promotes itself as the crypto mobile app for beginners and experts.
The interface is very simple, as they try to make the app as easy to use and understand as possible—something that’s particularly helpful for those who are new to crypto. But most users appreciate a simple and easy-to-understand interface!
A couple of eye-catching features are the ability to buy bitcoin directly in the wallet and the ability to trade over 100 different cryptocurrencies in-app.
BRD Wallets boasts a global support team that can respond to queries within 2 hours. Cryptocurrency and wallets can sometimes be confusing for new users. Accessing a support team can help alleviate some of the stresses felt when using a crypto mobile wallet.
Ethereum Mobile Wallets
Below, we cover some of the more popular Ethereum mobile wallets like MyEtherWallet, Argent and Trust Wallet. This is by no means an exhaustive list of Ethereum web wallets and we encourage you to find an Ethereum wallet that works for you.
MyEtherWallet (MEW) is an established platform in the crypto space. Many years of hard work has led to MEW boasting a strong, loyal following. The MEW wallet is available for free on iOS and Android.
MEW provides you with a place to store your ETH cryptocurrency. You can swap and trade cryptocurrencies, sign messages using your private key, deploy smart contracts, and interact with the dApp and Decentralised finance (DeFi) platforms.
They offer unique security features such as fingerprint and facial recognition log-ins.
A reason for MEW’s sustained excellence is their educational resources covering things like wallet tutorials, crypto safety and wallet best practice.
Argent opens up the world of cryptocurrency by letting users access DeFi, earn interest, send and receive crypto, explore dApps and exchange over 60 cryptocurrencies in-app.
Available for free on iOS and Android, a popular feature of Argent Wallet is the Argent Guardians. Whereby your cryptocurrencies are held in a smart contract on the blockchain, which can be recovered without the need of seed phrases.
Given your cryptocurrency is held on your phone and your phone holds your private key you need to access your mobile wallet, what happens if you lose your phone or it’s stolen?
Enter, Argent Guardians. Your Guardian can be a hardware wallet, a MetaMask account, a human being or Argent Guard. All of these options have the unique ability to recover your wallet and cryptocurrency should you lose or break your phone.
Similarly to MEW and Argent, Trust Wallet is freely available on iOS and Android devices and boasts similar basic functionality.
Trust Wallet has some unique features. It lets you utilise decentralised exchanges (DEXes) such as Binance DEX and Kyber Network. This opens up the realm of possible cryptocurrencies—as these platforms can often list cryptocurrencies that aren’t available on other, more popular centralised exchanges.
Read: What Is A DEX?
Another unique Trust Wallet feature is the ability to hold a Game Wallet. This means you can trade and invest in gaming collectables like Crypto Kitties, store gaming achievements and collectables earnt in your favourite games.
We’d like to reiterate mobile wallets aren’t the recommended place to store the majority of your holdings. Rather, mobile wallets are used for your ‘spending’ money, as opposed to your ‘savings’ account. Your ‘savings’ are recommended to be stored in a hardware wallet for greater security and protection.