Updated · Aug 03, 2022
Best for: Quick and easy buying and selling of cryptocurrency
Coinbase is a digital currency exchange platform headquartered in San Francisco, California. The company was founded in 2012 as part of Ycombinator, making it one of the oldest in the industry.
Its founders, Brian Armstrong and Fred Ehrsam, started it as a Bitcoin brokerage service — directly selling Bitcoins to clients. But its services expanded as its user base grew.
Coinbase exchange offers cryptos such as Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, and Ethereum in over 100 countries.
How Does Coinbase Work?
Coinbase is a secure online platform that enables selling, buying, transferring, and storing digital currency. The company’s goal is to create a global open financial system by helping people convert their crypto into local currencies.
Coinbase is the perfect starting point for beginners, as it is very user-friendly, and everything is located on one platform. But once you feel like you’ve gained enough experience, you can transfer from Coinbase to Coinbase Pro to use the more advanced features.
You can access Coinbase through Android and iOS apps and in-browser, allowing you to easily send and receive cryptos. The exchange also lets you buy cryptocurrencies manually or automatically by setting a weekly or monthly timer.
Coinbase has established itself as the top platform for buying, selling, storing, using, and earning cryptocurrency. With more than 35 million users worldwide, it continually upgrades existing and new features, including:
Coinbase Brokerage Service
Thanks to the Coinbase brokerage service, users can easily buy and sell cryptocurrencies - helping new users navigate the world of crypto.
Although the brokerage service intends to make trading easier, it has a notable disadvantage. Many user-written Coinbase reviews report a lack of control over their funds. As Coinbase stores everything for you, you don’t have direct access to your coins nor a private key.
Coinbase Pro is the more advanced version of Coinbase. It gives its users many additional features, which may seem a bit intimidating for novice crypto investors.
Thanks to Coinbase Pro, users can place market limits and stop orders with lower fees. Additional features like margin trading, upgraded charting capabilities, one-minute candle or line charts, and exponential moving averages overlays are also available.
Coinbase’s wallet is an easy and secure place to store and manage your cryptocurrency. The official independent mobile wallet was launched in 2018 for Android and iOS users, giving easier and safer access to your funds.
Coinbase also makes it possible for online merchants to accept cryptocurrencies on their own website through first-class plugins. Some of the most significant Content Management Systems (CMSs) support this, including Shopify, WooCommerce, and Magento.
In terms of Coinbase merchant fees, it’s free to accept crypto through the plugins.
Coinbase Supported Currencies
The number of available currencies on Coinbase might not top similar sites, but it includes the most popular ones. Take a look at the top 20 coins offered on the platform:
- Bitcoin (BTC)
- Ethereum (ETH)
- XRP (XRP)
- Chainlink (LINK)
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
- Bitcoin Satoshi's Vision (BSV) (Send Only)
- Litecoin (LTC)
- EOS (EOS)
- Tezos (XTZ)
- Stellar Lumens (XLM)
- USD Coin (USDC)
- Cosmos (ATOM)
- Dash (DASH)
- Ethereum Classic (ETC)
- Zcash (ZEC)
- Maker (MKR)
- Compound (COMP)
- Basic Attention Token (BAT)
- Algorand (ALGO)
- Dai (DAI)
Coinbase has two fee structures: Coinbase fees and Coinbase Pro fees.
For regular Coinbase users, there is a fixed spread of 0.50% for cryptocurrency purchases and sales. However, Coinbase retains the right to change it depending on market fluctuations.
In addition to this, Coinbase charges additional fixed fees:
- < $10.00: $0.99
- $10.01 - $25.00: $1.49
- $25.01 - $50.00: $1.99
- $50.01 - $200.00: $2.99
Fees on Coinbase Pro are different: there are taker and maker fees. When you place an order at the market price that gets filled immediately, you are a taker and pay a fee between 0.04% - 0.50% depending on your order’s pricing tier.
However, if you place an order that is not immediately matched by an existing order, it is placed on the order book. If another customer places an order that matches yours, you are considered a maker and pay a fee between 0.00% - 0.50%.
Coinbase transaction fees are 1.49% for standard buy and 3.99% for credit card buys. ACH transfer deposits are free, but wire transfers have a flat rate of $10. Instant card withdrawal fees are up to 1.50% of any transaction and a minimum of $0.55. Transactions between Coinbase accounts are free of charge.
As you can see, there isn’t a straight answer to the question of fees regarding Coinbase. Considering all of this, Coinbase fees are still among the lowest compared to other brokerage services.
New accounts have a buying limit, which only lets you buy a small number of Bitcoins. You can make your profile stronger by verifying your phone number, some personal information, and providing a photo ID. Once your account is verified, the limit will be lifted.
American citizens have a daily limit of $25,000. However, this also depends on your payment method. For instance, ACH transfer has a higher limit compared to credit cards. But if you’re dealing with SEPA payments, your purchase limit is $1,000 a week.
You won’t be limited in any way when making deposits via cryptocurrencies. But fiat currency deposits are limited in numerous ways, except for wire transfer deposits. The Coinbase withdrawal limit for Pro account holders is $25,000 per day.
Coinbase’s services are supported in more than 100 countries, making it difficult to name them all in this Coinbase review. If you’re interested in the full list of supported countries, you can find it on Coinbase’s official website.
Due to the high-level safety and security, Coinbase isn’t available in some restricted areas. Any jurisdictions subjected to US Treasury-administered sanctions programs and other governing bodies do not have access to Coinbase services.
Supported Payment Methods
You can withdraw from Coinbase with just a few clicks. To move your cryptocurrency to fiat currency, you will need to convert your funds to USDC or withdraw them to your Coinbase account.
There are a few supported Coinbase payment methods, including:
- Wire transfer, including ACH in the US and SEPA in the EU
- Credit cards
- Debit cards
- PayPal (withdrawal only)
- Crypto deposits and withdrawals
Coinbase currently doesn’t accept any new credit or debit cards. The minimum withdrawal limit is $0.10 to ensure every user has access to its funds as a precautionary measure.
Coinbase vs. Coinbase Pro
Here are the differences you can expect between Coinbase and Coinbase Pro:
|Number of supported countries||100+||42|
|Number of supported currencies||30+||30+|
|Ease of use||5/5||4/5|
|Trading pairs||Home country currency only||Home country currency + USD, EUR, GBP|
|Trading power||Market buys and sells||Buys and sells on market, limit, and stop order|
Any crypto exchange account relies on using strong passwords and security features. Once you’ve done your part, it’s up to Coinbase’s safety measures to protect account holders.
So, is Coinbase safe? With biometric fingerprint logins, two-step verification (2FA), and insurance if the company ever gets breached, and stores 98% of users' funds in offline cold storage, we can confirm that it’s very safe. Do note that Coinbase’s insurance is not applied if your account is breached due to your lack of security measures.
Unfortunately, spear-phishing commonly occurs on crypto websites. Hackers can access sensitive information through emails, SMS texts, social media posts, or fraudulent URLs. Naturally, Coinbase continuously upgrades its security performance to prevent any scams from happening.
Coinbase’s knowledge base is quite extensive and can be accessed on Coinbase and Coinbase Pro. If you experience any issues or have standard inquiries, there’s a high probability you’ll find an answer there. But apart from the knowledge base, there’s nothing to praise when it comes to its customer support.
From our personal experience and other Coinbase reviews, we can confidently state that its support is a huge flaw.
You can get in touch with support agents through email and by phone. For email support, be prepared to wait 48 to 72 hours for a response. While the support team will help you with your inquiry, waiting three days for an email reply from a top crypto platform in the industry is unacceptable. But contacting them by phone isn’t much better, as it’s unlikely you will get a straight answer from them.
We didn’t find a lot of positive customer reviews. Unfortunately, it seems that Coinbase has not lived up to its previously-set expectations lately. However, most of these reviews are focused on Coinbase’s poor customer support service.
As our Coinbase review already mentioned, the platform’s support is lacking and falling behind its competitors. Most users fail to get in hold of the support team—those who do, receive canned responses.
On most review sites, Coinbase’s average rating sits around two stars, which is genuinely disappointing considering the powerhouse this company is.
Verdict - Is Coinbase Worth It?
Coinbase is the perfect starting point for beginners looking to dive deep into the cryptocurrency world. It’s worth your time and money if you’re looking for an integrated wallet and currencies available in over 100 countries.
Upgrading your account to Coinbase Pro will give you smaller fees and additional amenities that don’t come with the regular Coinbase account. But if you think you’d rely on good customer support, it’s best to skip Coinbase altogether.
All in all, Coinbase is a platform with high security, low fees compared to other digital currency exchange companies, and eye-catching features that will come in handy for both novice and expert users. If you don’t mind the virtually non-existent customer support, go for it.
Looking for a Coinbase alternative? Check out our Binance review.
Is Coinbase legit?
Yes, it is. Coinbase is a legitimate online platform specializing in the exchange of digital currencies. Your sensitive information is secure with Coinbase.
Can you transfer money from Coinbase to a bank account?
Yes, but not directly. You have to convert your funds to USDC or withdraw them to your account on Coinbase. From there, you will be able to transfer the money directly to your linked bank account.
Is it safe to keep Bitcoin on Coinbase?
Yes, it’s safe. Our Coinbase review confirms that it’s one of the safest platforms out there for storing funds, as they are stored in offline storage that can't be accessed. That also includes Bitcoin, as well as any other cryptocurrencies.
Is Coinbase wallet free?
Yes, it is. Coinbase offers USD Wallet and Hosted Cryptocurrency Wallet Service free of charge.
Deyan has been fascinated by technology his whole life. From the first Tetris game all the way to Falcon Heavy. Working for TechJury is like a dream come true, combining both his passions – writing and technology. In his free time (which is pretty scarce, thanks to his three kids), Deyan enjoys traveling and exploring new places. Always with a few chargers and a couple of gadgets in the backpack. He makes mean dizzying Island Paradise cocktails too.
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