While our grandparents invested their money in current accounts, savings bonds, or building societies, our parents trade stocks. Nowadays, there are even more options available for modern investing. Cryptocurrencies are fascinating more and more people, and suitable crypto trading apps aim to make buying and selling as easy as online shopping. We present 5 apps for you to consider.
Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are no longer new, but their potential is far from being exhausted. Technically savvy and brave financial experts have been investing for a while, but most ordinary folks still hesitate and have concerns. And these concerns are not unfounded. Complex blockchain technology, vulnerability of Bitcoin exchanges, and significant price fluctuations make potential investors uneasy.
On the other hand, there remains the hope of significant returns, which is what makes cryptocurrencies so fascinating. However, be cautious: Investing in cryptocurrencies carries high risks, and even the best app cannot change that. As always, only invest money that you can afford to lose if necessary.
Buying Cryptocurrencies with Apps
Trading apps want to take advantage of the growing interest in crypto assets by making trading as simple as possible, directly on your smartphone. We will introduce you to five apps: Bison, Coinbase, Etoro, Justtrade, and Trade Republic.
Bison: For Crypto Beginners
Bison (visit provider) is a good choice for those who are concerned about getting ripped off by dubious Bitcoin apps. The Buffalo app is backed by the Stuttgart Stock Exchange, which not only advertises its German location but also its credibility as a stock exchange. Euwax AG, a subsidiary of Stuttgart Stock Exchange GmbH, is the trading partner for Bison. That sounds good and is also easy to use. You can register on the website or directly in the app.
During registration, the password strength is displayed, but users can also use weak passwords if they choose. The account can be activated via a confirmation link. After the first login, you will enter a demo mode, where you can test the app with a fictional portfolio. If you want to start trading for real, you need to switch to the live mode. This requires a video identification process, for which you need a valid ID card or passport, along with a bill or document in your name. To trade on additional devices, such as your home computer, you need to unlock them with your account and an additional SMS code.
The selection of cryptocurrencies on Bison is still manageable but growing steadily. Currently, you can buy and sell Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, and Litecoin, among others. Bison does not charge fixed transaction fees; it earns money through the spread, which is the difference between the buying and selling prices. Bison takes 0.75 percent. To trade, you need to link a SEPA-compatible bank account to the Bison app, from which you can then transfer money. Once the money has arrived at the provider, you can start trading. The downside is that this can take a few days and doesn’t really fit with a dynamic crypto trading app. It would be desirable to have faster deposit options such as PayPal or credit cards.
There are a few interesting convenience features, such as the Cryptoradar, which evaluates tweets from the crypto community using AI. This way, you will stay informed about current trends. Price alerts, automatic savings plans, and limit orders are also interesting features. You can let the app work for you in an elegant way.
Coinbase: For Crypto Professionals
The name Coinbase (visit provider) is familiar to many, especially since its IPO. Although the provider has had a few hacking incidents in the past, it now benefits from solid partnerships, such as with Adidas, and acquisitions of other crypto companies. Although Coinbase is headquartered in the USA, it has a well-made German website that claims to be licensed in Germany. And it is indeed, as the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) granted Coinbase Germany GmbH permission to conduct crypto custody business in mid-2021. However, when it comes to details, you will often find yourself back with English descriptions or English-only customer support. Coinbase now has its own wallet.
With Coinbase, you can trade almost anything that isn’t nailed down—around 70 cryptocurrencies are offered. You can deposit money via SEPA transfer, and cryptocurrencies can also be purchased with a credit card, although this option is more expensive. Name and email address are required for registration, and the account is activated via a confirmation link. However, you need to set up 2-factor authentication before that. Then you will be asked to provide your nationality and place of birth before going straight to the identity verification process. There is no way to test the app without committing.
The fees are higher than those of competitors: Coinbase charges 0.5% as a trading fee and 1.49% of the invested amount for purchases. If you use a credit card, the fee is 3.99%. Coinbase charges $0.18 for withdrawals from your Coinbase account. In addition to the spread, a variable transaction fee is also charged, which varies depending on the amount. All in all, it is not only quite complex but also expensive. Currently, a subscription model is being tested, which could potentially solve the issue of high costs.
Etoro: Social Trading
Two things stand out immediately with Etoro (visit provider): Firstly, in addition to cryptocurrencies, stocks and ETFs can also be traded on the platform. Secondly, the provider emphasizes the concept of social trading. This means that you can also use other users’ investment strategies. The registration process is kept very simple, and verification is not necessary unless you deposit more than €2,000.
You can try out a demo account by switching to “Virtual.” There, you will receive $100,000 in virtual money to test the app. If you want to start trading for real, various options are available to top up your attached account, such as credit cards, Klarna, PayPal, or bank transfers. A variable spread applies as fees, e.g., 0.75% for Bitcoin. For Ethereum, it’s 1.90%.
To help users keep track of the fast-paced business, there are numerous charts and analysis tools. You can create your own watchlists to monitor cryptocurrencies and stocks (if supported) that interest you. Conveniently, there is also a dedicated wallet available to securely store the purchased coins.
Justtrade: Stocks and Crypto in One
With Justtrade (visit provider), you can not only buy cryptocurrencies but also trade stocks. This may be of interest to some users who are looking for an app that offers more functionality. Unfortunately, during account opening, you are required to go through the entire verification process right away. You won’t get a simple test environment to play around with.
The focus is on stock trading, but you can also buy cryptocurrencies. You can deposit real money via SEPA transfer, but there is no option for PayPal or credit cards. 13 cryptocurrencies are currently available, which is not particularly abundant, but the well-known players are there, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum.
There are no transaction or network fees, but Justtrade charges a variable spread, with a minimum of 0.3 percent. This value depends on the order volume (€50 to €50,000) and market conditions.