Cryptotips George Shnurenko

Binance vs Coinbase- An Honest Comparison

💡 Cryptotips
Two of the most popular exchanges have a lot in common, but are definitely their own companies, so what’s the good and the bad of them both?
Binance vs Coinbase- An Honest Comparison

At first glance, they might seem very similar, but an in-depth comparison of Binance vs Coinbase reveals a stark contrast. While Coinbase is geared towards the new beginner who just wants to buy and sell cryptocurrency, Binance offers investors the opportunity to do so much more. They also have their peculiar limitations. Before we go into describing each, let’s see the different platforms for what they are.

What is Coinbase?

Coinbase is one of the most popular digital asset exchange companies and it has been adopted in over 190 countries worldwide. This platform is not just for digital assets as it also supports the fiat currency in 32 other countries. As far as reputation goes, Coinbase is undisputed. It has established itself as one of the most respected and most reliable exchanges in the world.

It was able to achieve this reputation based on the high level of security, the affordable cost of carrying out transactions, the very high volume of transactions, and the ability to support various cryptocurrency-to-cryptocurrency transactions. One more thing in favor of Coinbase is that it serves as the official exchange for currencies like Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin and Ethereum.

What is Binance?

If you’re familiar with Chinese exchanges for cryptocurrency, the probability that you’ve come across Binance is very high as it is another popular exchange. One of the major reason for its popularity is the fact that this exchange has about 260 crypto-to-crypto trading pairs. It also charges a meager 0.1 percent transaction fee.

In addition to the reduced cost of transactions, users get the chance to enjoy a 50 percent discount on the transaction fee for a year (the first year). This discount is valid, irrespective of the volume of the transaction carried out. The security support is also unparalleled. 
Now that we have an idea of the different exchanges, let’s attempt to carry out an honest comparison of Coinbase vs Binance.

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1. Binance vs Coinbase- The user interface

Coinbase was designed primarily for people who are new to the process of trading cryptocurrency. A novice investor will definitely have no troubles carrying out transactions on Coinbase as it has an extremely easy and friendly interface. In fact, options trading and margin trading are not supported, rather, you can just buy and sell digital assets.

Binance, however, is for the well-experienced experts in cryptocurrency trading. Some users claim that the amount of information available on the dashboard is enough to scare a novice away. But there’s an “Advanced view” and a “Basic view.” Some people sign up on both platforms, buy a coin on Coinbase, transfer it to Binance, and then carry out more advanced tasks there.

2. Binance vs Coinbase-The cryptocurrencies supported

There’s a clear winner here, Binance supports more cryptocurrencies compared to Coinbase. On Coinbase, you only have access to Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash. Plans are also ongoing to add ERC20 tokens. Binance, on the other hand, supports all the coins on Coinbase and hundreds of other currencies. Some of the coins include Ark, Cardano, VeChain, Ripple, NEO, etc.

3. Coinbase vs Binance- The transfer limit

Both platforms require you to fill in personal details and a photo identification before you are verified on the platform. On Coinbase, three major factors determine your transfer limit:

  1. Your track record of transactions
  2. How long you’ve had your account
  3. Your verification level

With a verified US account, you will be able to make transactions of $5,000 in a week. You also get a cap of $50 on your card. It is also good to note that the maximum amount you can deposit is much lower. If you choose to deposit using your bank account, you might have to wait for about four or five business days. If you use your card, it is effected immediately.

Binance, on the other hand, offers more flexible limits. You can deposit infinitely and your withdrawal limit depends on whether or not you’re verified. If you’re verified, you have a daily limit of 50 BTC. If you are yet to be verified, you can only make transactions below two BTC.

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4. Coinbase vs Binance- How the accounts are funded

Coinbase generally offers more options to finance your account and Binance is a little constrained in the area. With Coinbase, you can either buy cryptocurrencies or make deposits into your account from your bank account. The various methods available are ACH transfer, using your debit card or via wire transfer. 

With Binance, the limitation is that it is solely a cryptocurrency exchange. This means that you can only finance your account with crypto. For this reason, many people will first purchase crypto coins with fiat currency on platforms like Coinbase before going to Binance.

Conclusion

In this clash of giants, there’s no winner or loser. Binance and Coinbase carry out their different jobs excellently well. Although they have their limitations, for example, you can only trade cryptos on Binance and Coinbase doesn’t support so many currencies, both exchanges are still considered top-notch.
 

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Thomas Hughes

Nearly $1 Billion Worth of Ripple’s XRP Changes Hands

$989,999,892 worth of XRP was transferred within a four-hour span, and the amount was split into 5 transactions
Nearly $1 Billion Worth of Ripple’s XRP Changes Hands

$989,999,892 worth of XRP was transferred within a four-hour span, and the amount was split into 5 transactions, with the top three largest going to the same address, which now holds 2.6 billion XRP.

It looks like Ripple, who owns 60% of the entire XRP supply, is moving some of their holdings for unknown reasons. Looking at the bright side, the transaction cost for the largest transaction (999,999,959 XRP) was just 0.000012 XRP, so at least we get another confirmation that XRP can be moved with measly fees.

Chart Analysis – XRP/USD

Chart Analysis – XRP/USD

XRP/USD is up almost 3% during the last 24 hours, but down more than 11% for the last 7 days. This compared to Bitcoin’s -3.50% and Ethereum’s -8% for the same period makes XRP the worst performer in the top 3, while just a few days ago it was considered to be the most resilient.

Strictly from a technical point of view, we can see that 0.40 resistance is still holding and has rejected price lower, into 0.37 area but the Bollinger Bands are moving upwards, and the pair is supported by a bullish trend line, albeit not a very strong one. These are mixed signals, so the overall bias is neutral. A break of either support or resistance could decide the next medium-term direction.

Support zone: 0.3770 and the bullish trend line

Resistance zone: 0.40

Most likely scenario: another failed break of 0.40 would generate a drop through the trend line

Alternate scenario: bullish break of 0.40 and extended move towards 0.44 – 0.45

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Past-ICO Review: Finney, the Blockchain Phone Ahead of its Time?

👁 ICO Watch
The Blockchain-powered phone is here, but is the world ready for it?
Past-ICO Review: Finney, the Blockchain Phone Ahead of its Time?

Sirin labs have used Finney as an ICO to raise some massive funding to run a project on Blockchain-powered devices such as smartphones and computers, citing that traditional operating systems are vulnerable to hacking and leave users exposed to risk.

Finney is the name of the smartphone that is currently in development, and in April 2018, it was announced that electronics manufacturer Foxconn will work with Sirin to produce the phone.

There is another Blockchain enabled phone called Solarin and ultra-secure Blockchain phone and Sirin labs have an all-in-one Blockchain computer.

For the purpose of this article, we will stick to Finney only.

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By the numbers

The Finney ICO raised some $158 mln during the massive buying fest that was in December 2017; Dec. 12-25 to be precise. The Sirin Labs’ token (SRN) debuted at $0.90 and subsequently plunged to $0.32 per token, a loss of 64 percent of value.

While the idea of a Blockchain-powered phone is novel, will there be mass adoption of the technology that fast?

The Finney phone is sold via Sirin Labs’ website for $999, which is rather expensive, but the newer iPhones are in a similar price range. However, its advanced big brother, Solarin, is selling for a whopping $13,200! That is not a typo: Thirteen-thousand two-hundred dollars.  

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Phone features

Finney, Solarin and the all-in-one computer will all be powered by IOTA’s Tangle technology. The following are features that will be found on the Blockchain-based phone.

Blockchain Features

  • Shield OS:

  • Secure P2P resource sharing

  • Built-in cold-storage crypto wallet

  • Distributed Ledger Consensus

Sirin Labs Cyber Protection suite

  • Behavioral-based Intrusion Prevention System (IPS)

  • Blockchain-based, full tampering proof

  • Physical security switch (for wallet protection)

  • Secured communications (VoIP, text, email)

  • Three-factor authentication: Biometric, Lock Pattern, Behavioral

Phone specs

  • 5.2-inch QHD Display

  • 256GB of internal memory storage

  • 8GB RAM

  • Wi-Fi 802.11ac

  • BT 5.0

  • 16MP Main camera

  • 12MP Wide-Angle selfie camera

Furthermore, Sirin Labs plans to deliver a “decentralized app store run by the community” where “cost-bearing apps are based on a secure P2P resource-sharing system, which distributes fees between users and developers.”

However, which community are they talking about? This leaves a lot of questions to be answered.

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Lofty sales goals

While the media has been relatively quiet about the Finny phone, it was announced in April that the Switzerland-based company said that it’s already received more than 25,000 pre-orders, and hopes to sell between 100,000 and a few million units in 2018.

Further down the line, the plan is to license its tech to other hardware brands; Sirin is said to have been in talks with Huawei about that. Foxconn is the manufacturer of Apple’s iPhone and Sirin Labs had stated that the phones should be shipping out in October of this year, putting them well within striking distance of hitting the goal of selling almost a few million units.  

The Blockchain phone ahead of its time?

While it is hard to say whether the world is ready for a Blockchain-based phone, many people think Blockchain is only Bitcoin, it does have some unique uses.

Should the company be able to achieve their goal of selling more than one mln units, then there could be some support for the phone and the continued manufacture of it. But if Sirin Labs does not sell their intended number of phones to reach their goal, then the phone was ahead of its time and the market was not there.

This will be a continuing story as we await the release of the phone in October and see if a Blockchain phone is really something the masses want to buy.

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What Lightning Network Means for Bitcoin Scalability

Bitcoin’s developers are pinning their scalability hopes on an off-chain solution called Lightning Network.
What Lightning Network Means for Bitcoin Scalability

Bitcoin’s developers have been investigating scaling solutions for several years, and when they finally settled on a combination of SegWit and Lightning Network, the community was bitterly divided. With the fork of Bitcoin Cash and the death of the potential SegWit2x fork, it seems like the majority of “big blockers” have left the community, leaving the path open to implementing Lightning Network (LN).

Payment channels

LN uses a concept called “payment channels” which enable transactions to be made outside of the Bitcoin Blockchain. All these “off-chain” transactions are eventually aggregated, and the net changes are posted to the Blockchain. To make this easier to understand, consider what happens if you are trading on an exchange.

Let’s say you start with 10 BTC, then you earn 2 BTC by trading, then you earn 4 more BTC from another profitable trade, and finally you lose 1 BTC in a bad trade. The exchange doesn’t actually make three Blockchain entries; instead, the exchange waits until you decide to withdraw your funds and then creates only one transaction on the Blockchain. Instead of making three entries on the Blockchain for +4 BTC, +3 BTC and -1 BTC, the exchange would send you +6 BTC in a single transaction.

This is also similar to what happens when you use your credit card. Banks don’t actually send each other millions of small transactions each day. Rather, at the end of the day, banks aggregate the total debits and credits and settle their accounts with each other in a single transaction.

Criticisms

Lightning Network has its critics, though. Some have argued that the use of LN defeats the purpose of the Blockchain. By taking most transactions off-chain, you no longer have a universal, auditable ledger. Supporters argue that LN is an optional feature, so nobody will ever be required to use it. People who want to send Bitcoin to each other in the same way as before, directly on the Blockchain, can still do it.

Other critics think the idea won’t really allow Bitcoin to scale that much, because payment channels won’t save that much space on the Blockchain. They contend that most people don’t regularly transfer value back and forth between the same parties multiple times. If Bob sends Alice 1 BTC, and the two parties never transact with each other again, then the use of LN would not have saved any space on the Blockchain. LN only really shines when two or more parties transact with each other repeatedly.

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Governance Will Be Essential to Success of Cryptocurrencies

Governance has already shown its importance with both Bitcoin and Ethereum, and it could become even more vital in the future.
Governance Will Be Essential to Success of Cryptocurrencies

Governance is one of the most critical aspects of a cryptocurrency, because it sets the stage for how problems will be managed and how consensus will be developed. Digital currencies, like all software projects, are constantly evolving and responding to changes within their environment. Most software updates are uncontroversial, and the entire community simply follows along. The real test of a project’s governance, however, is how the community handles controversy or crisis.

Bitcoin: scalability

Bitcoin is probably the classic example due to its infamous scalability controversy. As early as 2013 it became obvious that changes were going to have to be made to the Bitcoin software in order to enable the network to process more transactions. Many suggested increasing the block size from 1 MB to 2 MB or even 8 MB. Others thought this wasn’t a viable solution due to centralization issues, and because it didn’t permanently solve the problem.

Unfortunately, as debate raged in the community, there was no formal method for deciding which scaling proposal to accept. Ultimately the choice came down to bigger blocks or the implementation of SegWit and Lightning Network. Many businesses and the vast majority of miners supported a compromise proposal called SegWit2x, which would combine aspects of both solution. SegWit2x would bring bigger blocks and would implement SegWit.

The community ended up accepting SegWit but rejected the increased block size, causing the network to fork between Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash. While this fork wasn’t devastating, it undoubtedly has created confusion for new crypto users and was not ideal.

Ethereum: TheDAO

Likewise, in 2016, Ethereum faced a massive crisis of its own when a massive entity called “TheDAO” was hacked and millions of Ether were stolen. Because of the staggering size of the hack, many called for a hard fork to be executed which would effectively roll back the hack. However, this solution was controversial because Blockchains are intended to be immutable, and a rollback was thought to be a dangerous precedent.

In the end, Ethereum’s developers created code that would implement the rollback and submitted it to the community. If enough miners decided to run the new code, the rollback would occur. If not, it wouldn’t. Miners voted with their hashpower, and an overwhelming number of them supported the new code, thus rolling back the hack and ending the crisis.

As with Bitcoin, Ethereum ended up splitting as well, with the Ethereum Classic Blockchain being born. Ethereum Classic shared all the same features as Ethereum and the same Blockchain, up until the point of the rollback. Supporters claimed this was the “real” Ethereum since it had the network’s entire, uncensored transaction history.

Some progress

Some digital currencies have created formal governance systems, such as Dash. Owners of 1,000 Dash can set up a so-called masternode, and vote on proposals to make changes to the network. One such vote was put to the network in early 2016, resulting in approval to increase the blocksize. The vast majority — over 99 percent — of masternode owners approved the change within 24 hours. However, only large holders of Dash are allowed to vote, and the currency has faced low voter participation on many community-sponsored proposals.

Nobody has completely solved the problem of governance, but progress is being made. The future undoubtedly holds many challenges for digital currency, and one day, time could be of the essence. Emergency changes might need to be made — for instance, if somebody builds a quantum computer – and cryptocurrency projects must be able to pivot extremely quickly at such times.

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🕵️‍ ICO Watch Eric Eissler

Better than Bitcoin and Ethereum, But Something is Missing:Past-ICO Review

👁 ICO Watch
Zen protocol combines the best of Bitcoin and Ethereum, but no marketing may lead to its silent demise
Better than Bitcoin and Ethereum, But Something is Missing:Past-ICO Review

Bitcoin is a great payment system but lacks scaling. Ethereum is a fantastic platform to build other platforms that run with smart contracts but is not the most secure place to store value on. What if you take the best of Bitcoin and Ethereum and combine them and leave out the negatives?

So you get Zen Protocol, at least it what they claim. It is attempting to build a better platform: Its decentralized, peer-to-peer, has a smart-contract platform that’s capable of creating, issuing and trading digital assets.

Zen assets

Zen Protocol’s ICO ran from Nov. 30 to Dec. 24 and raised $46.3 mln in that period. It’s token, released almost six months before the ICO on June 1, has done better than most altcoins that have been reviewed here, considering the long-lasting bear market that 2018 has been thus far.

The token started at $10.75 and is trading, at time of writing is at $27.13. In the interim, it reached a peak of $65.16 in January 2018. It is ranked 82 by CoinMarketCap and has a market cap of $117 mln and a daily trading volume of $1.4 mln.

However, don’t let the high prices fool you, Zen is a utility token and according to the website: “Zen is not another competitor to become digital cash. We believe that Zen is most valuable as a financial complement to Bitcoin.”

The token’s role is to power the execution of contracts on the network, akin to gas on the Ethereum network.

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Bitcoin sidechain

Zen Protocol observes Bitcoin’s network. Anything that happens in the Bitcoin Blockchain can trigger contracts on the Zen Blockchain.

Zen can act as a sidechain to Bitcoin, using a federated peg, collateral deposit, or, in the future, mechanisms such as Drivechain.

Drivechain allows multiple Blockchains to all agree to share the same 21 mln Bitcoins. These networks are otherwise autonomous. Zen Protocol uses the full Bitcoin consensus, storing a record of the valid Bitcoin chain with most proof of work.

Team

Adam Perlow- CEO

Perlow has a degree in finance from the University of Miami and he is a marksman in the Israeli army.

Nathan Cook- CTO

Has a BA from the University of Cambridge in Mathematics. He co-founded two companies: one journalistic in nature and the other one related to crypto, before joining Zen Protocol

Sharon Urban- Lead Developer

Urban has extensive experience in IT and development. He did some consulting for Kodak for several years before moving onto app development at several other companies before coming to Zen Protocol.

While the team may be capable of taking Zen Protocol far, one my question the lack of experience that the executive team has or just an incomplete LinkedIn profile.

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Great premise, little marketing

While Zen Protocol has a great premise and is seemingly going to deliver, it has been completing its tasks on the roadmap, it is suffering from little to no marketing. Imagine your company is taking the best of Bitcoin and Ethereum, you must advertise and get the word out. In the cryptosphere, competition is fierce, the industry is much like the Wild West still, and to top it off more than half the ICOs out there are not even worth mentioning because they will fail. As a Blockchain-backed company, Zen Protocol simply must advertise, otherwise, it might not have a shot at being successful.

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