Bitcoin is one of the most popular cryptocurrencies in the world and crypto enthusiasts have always been focused on investing in the latest global assets. However as blockchain and cryptocurrency are a relatively new technology, there is always some scrutiny on its security and how safe these digital assets actually are.
When you want to start investing in cryptocurrency, you require a secure digital wallet to hold and store your cryptos, this is where the Bitcoin wallet will come in. It is a storage app that is very similar to your bank account that allows you to store your Bitcoin and keep other cryptocurrencies’ keys to yourself. A crypto wallet also helps receive and send out Bitcoins to other wallets as well.
A crypto wallet whether it is provided by a crypto exchange or a stand alone service can be seen as a personal interface to the online Bitcoin network which provides you with private keys which are codes that allow you to send Bitcoins to the receiver.
Bitcoin wallets mainly come in two forms, the online storage or hot wallet and the offline storage also known as the cold wallet.
A hot storage wallet means that your Bitcoins are stored on the internet and are readily accessible as long as you have an internet connection. Since your Bitcoins can be accessed easily, they would however be prone to online hacking and theft.
If you were to opt for a cold offline storage wallet, this means your Bitcoins are stored on an external physical storage such as a hard drive or USB disk. Storing your Bitcoins on a cold storage means any theft attempted will be required to access your hardware physically and there is virtually no risk of being hacked.
However, such storages are complex to set up and require more time before you can access your Bitcoins such as plugging in the hard drive to your computer and inputting any passcode the offline wallet will require you to.
The Factors for Good Bitcoin Wallets
There are many Bitcoin wallets available to select from with all of them having their own pros and cons so you should watch out for the below features when deciding to select the best bitcoin wallet in India.
Type of cryptocurrencies supported
Not all Bitcoin wallets support every type of cryptocurrency that you can buy, most of them only allow you to store Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple and Litecoin so you need to make sure the bitcoin wallet you are opting for supports the crypto you are investing in
There are some online wallets on the web with both mobile and desktop compatibility for storing cryptocurrency that you just need to download and start using. These bitcoin wallets do not charge any initial fees but may charge you some transaction fees when you do a transaction which will go to coin miners.
When you are opting for a cold storage/offline wallet you may need to purchase them online or from local shops in India
Most wallets come with security features such as basic 2FA (Two-Factor authentication) and encryption of private keys. Most mobile app based wallets are online and security will depend on how the smartphone is secured itself and a passcode assigned to the wallet. These types of wallets would be deemed the least secure.
Hardware wallets would require physical access to complete transactions besides the passcode and are safe from hackers and virus attacks..
You need to select the best bitcoin wallet depending on your transaction requirements to see if you need instantaneous access to your cryptos on the go you need more security for hardware wallets.
When you are facing any problems you need to make sure there is a quick way to contact their customer support. Check their features if they offer an online chat or phone number that can be easily contacted to prevent lengthy come back times.
Best Bitcoin wallet in India
1. WazirX Bitcoin wallet
Bitcoin Wallet Features
WazirX is a great crypto wallet in India that you could choose. They are a fully fledged crypto exchange that also provides a wallet facility. WazirX is available on both the web and mobile so it allows its users to easily access their wallet anytime as long as they are connected to the internet. They are partnered with Binance to provide their services to its investors.
You would have to go through some basic verifications to open a WazirX account before being able to use this wallet. Once done, you can start storing up to 70+ supported coins that are also traded on the WazirX exchange which include Bitcoin, Litecoin and Ethereum.
The wallet is also compatible for P2P (buy and sell directly) transactions. For security WazirX employs a two-factor authentication using Google authenticator to ensure an added layer of security for its users.
A benefit of this bitcoin wallet would also be that since it is backed by a crypto exchange you can use this wallet to directly trade on the WazirX cryptocurrency exchange. However, there is a limit on the minimum and maximum withdrawal amount.
WazirX wallet does not charge any deposit fees when you store your coins in the wallet but any withdrawals are subject to fees which depend on the type of cryptocurrency and also the minimum withdrawal amounts.
2. Zebpay Bitcoin wallet
Bitcoin Wallet Features
A multi-cryptocurrency exchange that offers services which include a Bitcoin wallet for its users, Zebpay has recently gotten back to providing services in India after a brief closure under the RBI advisory.
When you store your coins on Zebpay, your assets will be held in a secured group and not in individual bitcoin wallets each with their own private key. This Bitcoin wallet in India allows its investors and users to easily transfer Bitcoin to other exchanges or wallets smoothly and effortlessly.
For the security side of things, Zebpay ensures that its storage of all invested cryptocurrency assets are secured in cold wallets/hardware storage in secured locations and signed using HSM (Hardware security). On top of that they also employ proprietary security protocol Omnitrixx to provide further security to its users’ transactions.
Currently in India, Zebpay supports up to 6 cryptocurrencies for storing and trading in several pairs which include Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin.
Instead of most wallets which incur a fee when transactions are made, Zebpay charges a monthly subscription fee of 0.0001 BTC per member. They have promised to reduce this amount once the full-fledged trading on the crypto exchange resumes. Due to its flat monthly fee, users who wish to perform large trade volumes can take advantage of this.
3. Coinbase Bitcoin Wallet
Bitcoin wallet Features
If you are looking for the best bitcoin wallet in India you can turn to Coinbase for your choice. Being easily one of the biggest crypto exchanges in India and also worldwide, it is an easy to use wallet that investors can employ to buy,sell and hold all sorts of cryptocurrencies. Coinbase ensures that your digital assets are all stored in one place and make any payments easily.
They are an online hot storage wallet that secures your private Bitcoin keys using Secure Enclave technology and their app is available on both the iOS Apple store or Google play store.
Since Coinbase is an incorporated crypto exchange, it is very user friendly and the wallet boasts a simple user interface to start storing and trading cryptos.
Coinbase currently supports more than 20 different types of cryptos and you can also earn free Bitcoin through a program called Coinbase Earn and to do this you need to watch advertisement videos and take their quizzes.
The Coinbase wallet on this crypto exchange boasts a strong historic security record and also a customer support base to ensure its users get any help that they require. Coinbase wallet page also provides a dedicated FAQ section and security features include two-factor authentication which you need to set up as well as SEPA deposits and withdrawals.
Coinbase wallet is free to install and use immediately and does not require a separate Coinbase Account to use. However, Coinbase does charge a miner fee for any payments made using the wallet which is passed to the cryptocurrency miner and this rate depends on the network transaction fees
4. Unocoin Bitcoin wallet
Bitcoin wallet features
Unocoin is an Indian-based crypto exchange and Bitcoin wallet to store digital cryptos. A prominent feature that makes Unocoin stand out from other Bitcoin wallets is the opportunity for cryptocurrencies to be purchased using SIP (Systematic Investment Planning) which can be used to set up a deduction of a set amount from a linked bank account of one of its users.
As this is an automatic process, users will be able to purchase BTC at the prevailing market rate and have it done on set intervals either daily, weekly or monthly.
The Unocoin bitcoin wallet also supports purchases of digital assets with fiat currencies and also its withdrawal which you need to link to a bank account
Currently, Unocoin only supports Bitcoin and Ethereum and all in all is easy to use.
Most funds stored on the wallet are secured offline and on top of this, investors can generate multiple addresses for their offline storage with no internet connection and encrypted with AES-256.
Funds are also sealed in envelopes and safe deposit lockers as a counter-measure against hacking, loss and theft of user funds. Unocoin also employs Two-Factor authentication which requires its users to verify their identity before logging in.
However with all the security features put in place, user anonymity is low as Unocoin collects personal details such as your Aadhard card details, PAN card details, contact number and other information that you need to provide in order to verify and identify you.
The details collected however are secure and are used to prevent illegal activities and confirm user identity with third party electronic identification professionals.
Unocoin charges buying and selling fees at a standard rate of 0.7% or 0.5% for gold members. There are also flat maker and taker fees with each at 0.4% and 0.6% respectively. \
No fees will be charged for deposits, withdrawals and storing your cryptos on the wallet while network fees vary with the type of cryptocurrency being traded. Their fees are considered low compared to other crypto exchanges available
5. Ledger Nano X
Bitcoin wallet features
Ledger Nano Ex is a hardware multi-currency Bitcoin wallet that you can safely store and secure your cryptocurrencies. They support a wide variety of cryptocurrencies too, with over 1,500 different cryptos and are being added further everyday.
The ledger Nano Ex being a hardware wallet means that it is the most safest way to store your coins, as this prevents hacking or the device being infected with a virus that will lead to loss of your private keys.
Once you have purchased this wallet, you are required to choose a pin number and you can select one with a minimum of 4 digits and you need to ensure you are the only person who knows this pin number,
One added layer of security that the Ledger Nano Ex provides you is that once you complete the confirmation of your pin number, you will be given a 24-word recovery phrase which you must write down. This is because in the event that you forgot or lost your pin, you will be prompted with the recovery phrase in order to create a new pin.
Physical layer of security that Ledger has is that they are built using durable materials such as a cover being made from stainless steel. This means you can make the mistake of dropping it and it would be difficult to cause any physical damage to it.
Unlike most software wallets though, the Ledger Nano X is not free and can only be purchased online or from local stores. You have to make sure the seller is legit as there is always the possibility of the seller installing a virus within the hardware device so in order to prevent this, you can always opt to buy from the official manufacturer.
Again, with the advantages of being highly secured, a hardware wallet does come with its disadvantages such as being inconvenient to access as you are required to plug your Ledger Nano X device into a desktop and enter your pin number in order to start transferring coins.
As mentioned earlier in this article, setting up a hardware wallet is a complex process so make sure you can read and understand the instruction manual when setting it up so this would mean it is less user-friendly for beginners.
6. Trezor Wallet
Bitcoin wallet features
Trezor is a hardware wallet where you can keep over 8 different types of coins and 1000+ ERC-20 tokens safely in a secured offline environment. Trezor wallet is light and employs firmware signature verification and constantly updates its security procedures to protect you from physical theft.
In the event there is a failure of invalid firmware signature, the wallet will automatically erase the device memory to protect itself from any potential threats.
A final security feature that Trezor provides is that it is packed in ultrasound hardware seals which cannot be restored once it is broken so this is important if you need to check if the wallet has been previously tampered with. You need to use a USB connector is required to connect it to your PC or mobile device to perform transfer of cryptocurrencies
On the market, the Trezor wallet can be gotten within the range of RS.12,500 to RS. 14,000.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Q: Which is the best Bitcoin wallet?
Best overall would be Coinbase and Trezor and Ledger Nano X can be the best hardware wallets in terms of both Security and Durability.
Q: How can I get a crypto wallet?
Most software wallets can be downloaded immediately on the web or through the app store while hardware wallets require being purchased online or through retailers
Q: Is bitcoin legal?
The Indian government has not authorized nor regulated Bitcoin as a legal tender but the purchase and holdings of cryptos are not illegal in any way