Coinbase Wallet Review 2023: Pros, Cons and How It Compares
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The bottom line: Coinbase’s cryptocurrency wallet is a simple but highly functional option for moving your funds off a custodial exchange and into your own hands. Coinbase Wallet offers a mobile app and browser extension that support thousands of cryptocurrencies and provide built-in access to decentralized applications for staking, yield farming and non-fungible tokens, or NFTs.
Pros & Cons
Easy transfer from Coinbase, the largest U.S.-based exchange.
Large selection of supported cryptocurrencies.
Decentralized application, or dapp, access includes staking tools and NFT marketplaces.
No desktop application.
Table of Contents
Where Coinbase Wallet shines
Selection: Coinbase Wallet can store a huge number of digital assets. Its website says the wallet supports thousands of coins, including all of the ERC-20 tokens built on Ethereum technology.
Web3 functionality: Coinbase Wallet allows users to buy, trade and earn rewards on cryptocurrency and NFTs without having to leave their assets in the custody of a centralized exchange.
Conversion to cold storage: Coinbase Wallet has a partnership with hardware wallet Ledger to help users easily transfer assets to offline storage.
Where Coinbase Wallet falls short
Not fully open source: Coinbase Wallet has an open-source protocol that developers can use to write applications to work with it, but the overall software is not open source. Some users may prefer wallet software to be fully open source so they can test the security of the code without putting trust in the wallet’s developers.
What Coinbase Wallet is best for
Mobile or browser-based hot storage with easy access to exchanges and dapps.
Coinbase Wallet at a glance
Coinbase Wallet does not use two-factor authentication or multisignature support. The software is not fully open source.
Coinbase Wallet supports all ERC-20 tokens as well as Bitcoin, Dogecoin and Litecoin.
Coinbase Wallet says it supports thousands of digital assets, including NFTs. It also has features that include purchases, swaps and staking directly from the wallet.
Coinbase Wallet is a hot wallet that can convert to dedicated offline storage devices such as Ledger.
Coinbase Wallet has a highly rated mobile app and browser extension but no desktop application.
Coinbase has educational content available on its website, plus data and market analysis tools to help you track the performance of your crypto portfolio.
Full details about Coinbase Wallet's ratings
Security: 2 out of 5 stars
Coinbase Wallet is a self-custody wallet, which can have some advantages over storing your crypto on an exchange: You can’t lose your crypto if an exchange fails or gets hacked. However, if you lose your security information like your password and recovery phrase, you could lose access to your crypto — and the wallet can’t help you recover it as an exchange could.
Coinbase Wallet has an open-source protocol that developers can use to write applications to work with it, but the overall software is not open source, so you’ll have to trust in the security of the code.
» Learn more: Hot wallet vs. cold wallet
Selection: 5 out of 5 stars
Coinbase says its wallet supports all ERC-20 tokens, which number in the hundreds of thousands, as well as Bitcoin, Dogecoin and Litecoin. However, Coinbase Wallet is dropping support for Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum Classic, Stellar and Ripple in 2023.
Integration: 5 out of 5 stars
With Coinbase Wallet, you can carry out purchases and trades directly from your wallet. According to Coinbase’s website, the wallet supports thousands of cryptocurrencies, including all tokens on the Ethereum blockchain and NFTs.
Storage: 5 out of 5 stars
Coinbase Wallet is a software, or hot, wallet, which means it stores the keys to your crypto assets using software on an internet-connected device.
If you’re interested in another layer of security for your crypto, you can consider a cold wallet, which stores your cryptocurrency on a physical device that keeps your keys offline. Coinbase Wallet has a feature that allows you to convert cryptocurrency to cold storage devices sold by the wallet maker Ledger.
» Looking for a hardware wallet instead? Here are our top picks
Functionality: 3 out of 5 stars
Coinbase Wallet can be accessed through a mobile app or browser extension, though there’s no desktop application available.
Tools: 4 out of 5 stars
Coinbase has a library of cryptocurrency education content to help you understand how to manage your digital assets, including Web3 tools. Coinbase Wallet’s mobile app and browser extension also offer basic tools for tracking the performance of your crypto portfolio.
Other details you should know about Coinbase Wallet
Pricing: Coinbase Wallet is free to use, but it's important to understand network transaction fees in cryptocurrency and how they work when using any digital wallet.
Legal issues: Coinbase Wallet was part of a legal complaint against Coinbase by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The agency argues that some transactions carried out using the Wallet app involve unregistered securities, an allegation Coinbase denies. Though the legal woes do not immediately affect the functioning of the service, the uncertainty is something to keep in mind as you select a crypto storage option.
Is Coinbase Wallet right for you?
If you’re looking to store a wide variety of cryptocurrencies with easy access to exchanges and the decentralized finance ecosystem, Coinbase Wallet could be a good option.
How we review crypto wallets
NerdWallet’s comprehensive review process evaluates and ranks products that allow U.S. customers to store, send and receive cryptocurrency. Our aim is to provide our independent assessment of providers to help arm you with information to make sound, informed judgments on which ones will best meet your needs. We adhere to strict guidelines for editorial integrity.
We conduct firsthand testing and observation, and the results fuel our proprietary assessment process that scores each provider’s performance across more than 15 factors. The final output produces star ratings from poor (1 star) to excellent (5 stars).
For more details about the categories considered when rating wallets and our process, read our full methodology.
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