This guide gives an overview of the best hardware wallets available.
What is a Cryptocurrency Hardware Wallet?
A crypto hardware wallet is a dedicated physical device. Its only purpose is to secure your cryptocurrency. They aren’t free like software wallets but they are far more secure. Anyone with a significant amount of crypto should invest in a hardware wallet.
Hardware wallets have enabled crypto users to manage their funds easily and securely. The top names are multi-coin wallets so you can put your entire portfolio on these devices. Older cold storage methods are complicated and put your funds at risk if set up incorrectly.
Hardware wallets are safe but poor security practices will put your funds at risk. If you save your seed phrase in a text file, or if you take a picture with your phone, your crypto will be at risk. You should write the seed phrase down and put it in a safe place.
Buy these wallets directly from the company or an official vendor to limit your risk. There have been Reports of look-a-like devices being sold to steal funds. You also want to be sure that your device hasn’t been tampered with.
A lot of hardware wallets are available these days. Ledger, Trezor and KeepKey are the most popular ones on the market.
The Ledger Nano S Hardware Wallet
Ledger is a well-known hardware wallet. They have built a strong reputation in the cryptocurrency space and provide high-quality customer support.
The Ledger Nano S is the iconic hardware wallet offered by Ledger. This is currently the best value option in the market. It’s an easy choice to make when you consider factors like usability, customer service, security and price. This device is easy for beginners to set up and use. It only takes a few minutes to generate wallets or send funds.
The Ledger is compatible with many different cryptocurrencies like Dash, Bitcoin, Litecoin, ETH, XRP, BCH and more. It can also be used in conjunction with other wallets like MetaMask, Mycelium, Fairy Wallet and more.
The Ledger Nano S is small enough to fit in your pocket so you can take it anywhere. It’s durable and has a sleek, smooth design. It currently costs $59.
Ledger recently developed a new wallet known as the Ledger Nano X. It comes with a rechargeable battery and allows users to interact with their wallet via Bluetooth. You can pre-order the Ledger Nano X for $119.
The Trezor Hardware Wallet
Trezor was the first hardware wallet for Bitcoin. They have since added a variety of other coins and features. This is the second best hardware wallet.
Trezor also has a good reputation and gives users the ability to interact with wallet software like Mycelium. The set up only takes a few minutes, but it’s a little longer than the Ledger
Trezor has a few advantages over Ledger. Trezor has native support for ERC20 tokens. Ledger has a few ERC20 tokens but sending something unsupported would require using the Ledger with MyEtherWallet or MetaMask.
A common complaint about Trezor is that sometimes firmware updates wipe the Trezor device. This will require you to recover the wallet with your seed phrase.
The Trezor One is portable but larger than the Ledger Nano S. The Trezor One is currently 69 Euros (about $78 USD).
Other Hardware Wallets
There are a few other options out there.
The Keepkey hardware wallet also enjoys some popularity. It was acquired by ShapeShift and allows users to swap their assets. Keepkey only supports a handful of coins.
The Blockchain Lock Box came from a partnership between Blockchain.com and Ledger. It allows for crypto-to-crypto transactions via Swap.
We also have the Bitbox, Archos Safe-T and Coldcard hardware wallets.
The two most reputable hardware wallets are Ledger and Trezor. Most of the other hardware wallets are new and haven’t been battle tested.
The Trezor vs Ledger debate is common but Ledger is the most popular. Both options have a smooth user interface and a diversity of assets. Both devices also have a high level of security. The set up process is faster with Ledger and the Trezor has been known to reset after updating the firmware.
Considering all factors, the Ledger is the best option. It is cheaper and has added functionality like being able to stake ONT and ARK. The Ledger Nano S also allows NEO holders to generate GAS. Ledger has a strong reputation for good customer service
If you value your crypto, buy a hardware wallet. Even beginners can use the Ledger hardware wallet to keep their coins safe.
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