Home 15 Best Decentralized Crypto Wallets for 2024

15 Best Decentralized Crypto Wallets for 2024

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced investor, keeping crypto in a decentralized wallet is crucial. You’ll retain full control of the wallet – meaning third-party trust or authorization isn’t required. 

Put otherwise, you’ll become your own banker and the only person with access to the wallet’s private keys. 

But which decentralized crypto wallets are the best in 2024? Read on to discover 15 leading decentralized wallets for user-friendliness, security, fees, supported networks, and features. 

The Top Decentralized Wallets Ranked

We consider the following decentralized crypto wallets as the best options in the market:

  1. Best Wallet – The Overall Best Decentralized Wallet for Crypto Investors
  2. Zengo – Free Mobile Wallet App Without Seed Phrase Vulnerabilities
  3. Exodus – Popular Wallet for Desktop Users With Windows, Mac, or Linux
  4. ELLIPAL Titan 2.0 – Best Option for Safely Keep Coins in Cold Storage
  5. Ledger Nano X – Established Hardware Wallet With Unparalleled Security
  6. Trezor Model One – Trusted Self-Custody Crypto Cold Wallet for Just $59
  7. OKX Wallet – Top Decentralized Wallet for Storage, Trading, and Earning
  8. Bybit Wallet – Web 3.0 Wallet Supporting Over 10,000 Tokens and 20 Networks
  9. Blockstream Jade – Open-Sourced Bitcoin Hardware Wallet With Air-Gapped Security
  10. NGRAVE – Ultra-Clear Touchscreen Wallet for Crypto Beginners
  11. Coldcard – Secure Bitcoin-Only Wallet Device Retailing for $157.94
  12. Bitbox – One of the Best Offline Wallet Solutions for ERC-20 Tokens
  13. Keystone – Anti-Tamper Self-Custody Wallet With Data Isolation and Biometrics
  14. SafePal – Bridges the Gap Between Cold Storage and Web 3.0 Integration
  15. SecuX – Military-Grade Security for Crypto Asset and NFT Investments 

Best Decentralized Crypto Wallets Reviewed

We’ll now review the best decentralized crypto wallets listed above. Read on to choose the right wallet for safe crypto storage.

1. Best Wallet – The Overall Best Decentralized Crypto Wallet for 2024 

Best Wallet reviewBest Wallet is a decentralized wallet that comes as a mobile app. iOS and Android devices are supported, and it takes seconds to set up. Users must choose a PIN and write down their 12-word backup passphrase. Biometrics and two-factor authentication (2FA) offer additional safeguards. 

This user-friendly wallet currently supports three networks: Ethereum, BNB Chain, and Polygon. Bitcoin and other popular networks will be added in future development phases. Receiving and storing tokens is free and there are no extra charges when transferring funds. Best Wallet also offers a decentralized exchange. 

Best Wallet review

This means users can swap tokens without leaving the app. Swaps are executed in real time via partnered liquidity providers. Other pending features include a browser extension, staking tools, and an airdrop hub for new crypto launches. Best Wallet also offers a fiat on-ramp. This enables users to buy crypto coins with a debit/credit card.

Decentralized Wallet Wallet Type Price Supported Networks Fee to Buy Crypto Mobile App? Features
Best Wallet Software wallet Free Ethereum, BNB Chain, and Polygon Determined by the on-ramp provider Yes Decentralized token swaps, fiat on-ramp supports debit/credit cards, easily add custom tokens

Pros

  • The overall best crypto DeFi wallet
  • Store any tokens on the Ethereum, BNB Chain, and Polygon networks
  • Comes as a free, user-friendly app for iOS and Android
  • Offers decentralized token swaps without leaving the wallet
  • Robust security features, including biometrics
  • Enables users to buy cryptocurrencies with a debit/credit card

Cons

  • Some features are still being developed, such as staking and airdrops
  • Bitcoin, Solana, and other popular networks aren’t currently supported

2. Zengo – Free Mobile Wallet App Without Seed Phrase Vulnerabilities

Zengo reviewZengo offers a free yet highly secure decentralized wallet app. It’s a great option for beginners, considering Zengo comes without seed phrase vulnerability. This is because Zengo doesn’t use traditional private keys. Instead, the wallet’s credentials are backed by MPC security. 

This means the credentials are split and hosted on multiple unconnected servers. So, if one of these servers is compromised, the hacker would be able to access the wallet. Moreover, instead of backup passphrases, wallet recovery is accessed via multi-factor authentication. This includes facial biometrics and email.  

Zengo wallet review

Zengo, which is used by over 1 million users, supports some of the best cryptocurrencies to buy. This includes Bitcoin, Dogecoin, Ethereum, BNB, and Polygon. Custom tokens on supported networks can also be added. Additional features include token swaps, fiat on-ramp services, and 24/7 customer support.

Decentralized Wallet Wallet Type Price Supported Networks Fee to Buy Crypto Mobile App? Features
Zengo Software wallet Free (also offers a premium plan with additional security features) Bitcoin, Dogecoin, Ethereum, BNB, Polygon, Arbitrum, and Optimism Determined by the on-ramp provider Yes MPC security, no seed phrase vulnerability, in-app token swaps

Pros

  • One of the best DeFi crypto wallets for MPC security
  • Wallet credentials are split on multiple unconnected servers
  • Uses multi-factor authentication for wallet recovery
  • Supports Bitcoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin, and other popular networks
  • Comes with in-built token swaps and a fiat on-ramp

Cons

  • Doesn’t come with staking tools
  • Doesn’t support Solana, Ripple, or Cardano

3. Exodus – Popular Wallet for Desktop Users With Windows, Mac, or Linux

Exodus logoFounded in 2015, Exodus is an established wallet provider that offers decentralized storage. While other device types are also supported, it’s one of the best options for desktop users. Exodus offers desktop software for Windows, Mac, and Linux.

It also offers a browser extension for Chrome. Exodus is free to download, and the interface is ideal for beginners. More than 50 blockchains are supported, meaning Exodus is a great choice for diversified portfolios. Some of the blockchains supported include Bitcoin, BNB Chain, Ethereum, Solana, Monero, and Dogecoin. 

Exodus wallet review

Custom tokens can also be added, which will come in handy when investing in new cryptocurrencies. Exodus offers real-time prices on coins being stored – simply select your preferred currency via the settings. We also like that Exodus supports in-wallet staking tools with competitive yields. For instance, Ontology APYs are over 17%.

Decentralized Wallet Wallet Type Price Supported Networks Fee to Buy Crypto Mobile App? Features
Exodus Software wallet Free Over 50 networks including Bitcoin, BNB Chain, Ethereum, Solana, Monero, and Dogecoin Determined by the on-ramp provider Yes Multi-device wallet, supports over 50 networks, in-wallet staking tools

Pros

  • One of the best DeFi wallets for desktop users
  • Supports Windows, Mac, Linux, and browser extensions
  • Also offers a mobile app for iOS and Android
  • Displays real-time crypto prices in your preferred currency
  • Established in 2015

Cons

  • Isn’t an open-sourced wallet
  • Comes with a limited range of security features

4. ELLIPAL Titan 2.0 – Best Option to Safely Keep Coins in Cold Storage 

ELLIPAL Titan 2.0 is the safest option on this decentralized wallet list. It comes as a hardware device that’s never connected to the internet. This means your crypto coins remain in ‘cold storage’ – so you won’t need to worry about online hacks or phishing attempts.

Unlike other hardware wallets, ELLIPAL Titan 2.0 doesn’t require a USB or Bluetooth connection when transferring funds. This adds an extra layer of security – especially if you’re holding a large balance. To transfer coins to another wallet, users must scan a QR code from the ELLIPAL device. The scan should be made via the ELLIPAL app for Android or iOS.

ELLIPAL Titan 2.0 review

ELLIPAL Titan 2.0 supports over 10,000 coins and tokens from the most popular blockchain ecosystems. This includes Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, TRON, Bitcoin Cash, and Solana. However, ELLIPAL Titan 2.0 might not be suitable if you’re on a budget – it retails for $169 on the manufacturer’s website. This is in addition to shipping fees.

Decentralized Wallet Wallet Type Price Supported Networks Fee to Buy Crypto Mobile App? Features
ELLIPAL Titan 2.0 Hardware wallet $169 plus shipping 41 blockchains including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Solana, Cardano, Ripple, and BNB Chain Determined by the on-ramp provider Yes Air-gapped security, never connected to an external device, supports over 10,000 coins and tokens

Pros

  • The most secure decentralized wallet for 2024
  • Uses air-gapped security to avoid external connections
  • Transactions are authorized by scanning a QR code
  • Supports 41 blockchain networks
  • Comes with in-built token swaps and staking

Cons

  • Only 5 staking coins are supported
  • Costs $169 plus shipping fees

5. Ledger Nano X – Established Hardware Wallet With Unparalleled Security 

Ledger Nano logoNext on this list is the Ledger Nano X – an industry-leading hardware wallet with unparalleled security features. This small device looks like a USB stick – so it’s easy to store and transport. The wallet remains offline at all times – removing the risks of hacking attempts.

Moreover, transactions must be authorized on the device by entering the 4-8 digit PIN. Users can set the transaction up via the Ledger app. This either requires a USB type-C or Bluetooth connection. Ledger Nano X also comes with a backup passphrase. This enables users to recover the wallet if it’s lost, damaged, or stolen. 

Ledger Nano X review

Ledger Nano X is also a great option if you’re holding lots of different coins. It supports dozens of blockchain networks, including Bitcoin, Ripple, BNB Chain, Solana, Ethereum, and Cardano, not to mention Avalanche, Dogecoin, Polkadot, and TRON. Ledger Nano X retails for $149, although there’s also a $79 model with fewer features.

Decentralized Wallet Wallet Type Price Supported Networks Fee to Buy Crypto Mobile App? Features
Ledger Nano X Hardware wallet $149 including shipping Dozens of blockchains including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Solana, Dogecoin, Cardano, and Ripple Determined by the on-ramp provider Yes Cold wallet storage, supports ETH and SOL staking, fiat-on ramp

Pros

  • Popular hardware wallet that comes as a small USB-like device
  • Transactions must be authorized via a 4-8 digit  PIN
  • Remote recovery if the wallet is lost, damaged, or stolen
  • Prices include shipping fees
  • Supports the best meme coins – including Dogecoin

Cons

  • Retails for $149 – which might not be suitable for all budgets
  • Not as secure as an air-gapped wallet

6. Trezor Model One – Trusted Self-Custody Crypto Cold Wallet for Just $59  

Trezor logoThe Trezor Model One is also worth considering when choosing a decentralized hardware wallet. While Trezor is a secure and safe option, it’s also one of the cheapest; it retails for just $59 on the manufacturer’s website. Do note that shipping fees will be charged depending on where you live. 

Like any other hardware wallet, the Trezor Model One offers offline storage. Outgoing transfers require a PIN, which must be entered on the device. What’s more, even if the device is lost or stolen – the wallet funds can still be recovered remotely. Just make sure you keep the backup passphrase somewhere safe and accessible.

Trezor Model One review

In terms of drawbacks, the Model One supports fewer blockchain networks than other Trezor versions. Nonetheless, this includes Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Stellar, BNB Chain, and Dogecoin. Plus any sub-tokens on each supported network. Notable networks that aren’t covered include Solana, Cardano, and Ripple.

Decentralized Wallet Wallet Type Price Supported Networks Fee to Buy Crypto Mobile App? Features
Trezor Model One Hardware wallet $59 plus shipping fees Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Stellar, BNB Chain, Dogecoin, Polygon, Mantle, Cronos, and Arbitrum Determined by the on-ramp provider Yes Transactions must be authorized on the device, wallet recovery via the backup passphrase, comes with staking tools

Pros

  • One of the cheapest cold storage wallets for Bitcoin
  • Also supports Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and other popular coins
  • Retails for just $59 on the manufacturer’s website
  • Top-notch security features with a simple wallet recovery
  • Enables users to easily stake crypto

Cons

  • Shipping fees can be high depending on where you live
  • Doesn’t support Solana or Ripple

7. OKX Wallet – Top Decentralized Wallet for Storage, Trading, and Earning 

OKX logoOKX Wallet is a great option for active crypto investors. It has developed a bridge aggregator that connects with hundreds of Web 3.0 applications. This enables users to buy and sell thousands of coins and tokens without leaving the OKX Wallet interface. 

Users always get the best price based on the required trading volume. Not only that, but users can also earn competitive yields on idle crypto investments. Just search for the crypto, and OKX Wallet displays supported staking pools based on the APY and total value locked (TVL). Liquidity farming is also supported, which often comes with double-digit yields. 

OKX Wallet review

In terms of storage, OKX Wallet is safe, secure, and completely decentralized. It comes as desktop software for Windows and Mac, plus a mobile app for iOS and Android. A browser extension for Chrome is also supported. OKX Wallet also offers MPC security as an extra safeguard, which removes a single point of failure on private key storage.

Decentralized Wallet Wallet Type Price Supported Networks Fee to Buy Crypto Mobile App? Features
OKX Wallet Software wallet Free Over 80 blockchain networks including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Solana, and BNB Chain Determined by the on-ramp provider Yes Connects with hundreds of liquidity pools, swap and earn yields on thousands of tokens, supports over 80 blockchain networks

Pros

  • Supports Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and Chrome
  • Optional MPC security add-on for enhanced safety
  • More than 80 blockchain networks are supported
  • A great option for earning yields on idle tokens
  • Also offers in-wallet token swaps from over 400 liquidity providers

Cons

  • Doesn’t offer a fiat off-ramp for cash withdrawals
  • Swap fees are built into the exchange rate

8. Bybit Wallet – Web 3.0 Wallet Supporting Over 10,000 Tokens and 20 Networks  

Bybit Wallet reviewBybit – considered one of the best exchanges for leverage and margin trading, offers a decentralized wallet app for iOS and Android. Users can also install a browser extension for Chrome. Either way, the Bybit Wallet comes with seedless phrases and MPC technology. 

This makes Bybit Wallet a good option for beginners, as there’s no requirement to safeguard the wallet from remote hacking attempts. More than 10,000 coins and tokens are supported from over 20 networks. Bybit Wallet also supports NFTs from multiple chains. It also connects to Web 3.0 applications from the Solana and Mantle ecosystems.

Bybit Wallet review

This includes decentralized exchanges, staking protocols, and NFT marketplaces. Bybit Wallet also supports crypto airdrops, not to mention first-mover access to initial direct offerings (IDOs). The wallet also directly connects to Bybit’s centralized exchange, which supports margin products with leverage of up to 125x.

Decentralized Wallet Wallet Type Price Supported Networks Fee to Buy Crypto Mobile App? Features
Bybit Wallet Software wallet Free Over 20 blockchain networks including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Solana, and Mantle Determined by the on-ramp provider Yes Supports storage, swaps, and earning, seedless phrases are ideal for beginners, offers access to new IDOs

Pros

  • Free decentralized wallet for iOS, Android, and Chrome
  • Seedless phrases via MPC technology
  • Supports thousands of crypto assets from over 20 networks
  • Users have access to new IDOs and crypto airdrops
  • Connect to the Bybit exchange to get 125x leverage

Cons

  • Doesn’t offer desktop software for Windows or Mac
  • The browser extension is rated 2.6/5 on the Chrome Web Store

9. Blockstream Jade – Open-Sourced Bitcoin Hardware Wallet With Air-Gapped Security  

Blockstream JadeBlockstream Jade is an open-sourced hardware wallet. Being open-sourced is an important feature for many crypto investors, as it ensures the wallet’s software code is transparent. It also enables the Blockstream Jade community to identify potential vulnerabilities.

In terms of security, Blockstream Jade is also an air-gapped hardware wallet. So, rather than authorizing transactions via Bluetooth or USB cables, users scan a unique QR code. Although Blockstream Jade is a safe decentralized wallet, do note that it only supports Bitcoin. This means investors with diversified portfolios will need to choose another option.

Blockstream Jade review

Nonetheless, Blockstream Jade retails for just $64.99 – making it an affordable option for cold storage. Shipping charges are added when checking out – fees vary depending on the delivery country. Blockstream Jade is purely for long-term storage, so it doesn’t come with staking, fiat on-ramp services, or other popular features.

Decentralized Wallet Wallet Type Price Supported Networks Fee to Buy Crypto Mobile App? Features
Blockstream Jade Hardware wallet $64.99 plus shipping fees Bitcoin N/A Yes Open-sourced code, protected by air-gapped security, supports the Bitcoin Lightning network

Pros

  • Affordable hardware wallet for storing Bitcoin
  • Robust security features including air-gapped technology
  • Compatible with the Lightning network for fast Bitcoin transfers
  • Open-sourced code for enhanced transparency

Cons

  • Doesn’t support altcoins
  • Shipping fees are only displayed when checkout out

10. NGRAVE – Ultra-Clear Touchscreen Wallet for Crypto Beginners  

NGRAVE wallet revioewAnother top-rated hardware wallet on this list is NGRAVE. Unlike other hardware wallets, the NGRAVE device comes as a touchscreen device. The device has a 4” ultra-clear touchscreen, making it easy for beginners to transact just like a small smartphone. 

What’s more, the NGRAVE wallet comes with air-gapped security – so there’s no requirement for WIFI, Bluetooth, or USB connections. On the contrary, outgoing transfers are signed via unique QR codes. This ensures the wallet’s private keys are always offline. Another innovative feature is how backup passphrases are secured.

NGRAVE wallet review

Users can order GRAPHENE alongside their NGRAVE wallet, which allows passphrases to be engraved on stainless steel. The main drawback with NGRAVE is pricing. Its touchscreen wallet retails for $398. If you also want the GRAPHENE stainless steel, the total cost is $498. This means NGRAVE is only suitable for large crypto holdings. 

Decentralized Wallet Wallet Type Price Supported Networks Fee to Buy Crypto Mobile App? Features
NGRAVE Hardware wallet $398 plus shipping fees 15 blockchain networks including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Dash, Dogecoin, and Solana N/A Yes Touchscreen wallet with a 4” screen, transactions are approved via QR scanning, supports 15 blockchain networks

Pros

  • State-of-the-art hardware wallet with a 4” touchscreen
  • No external connections with USBs, Bluetooth, or WIFI
  • Supports Bitcoin and 14 popular altcoin networks
  • Users can store backup passphrases on stainless steel

Cons

  • Huge price-tag of $398 plus shipping fees
  • Non-EU customers will likely pay extra taxes

How We Ranked These Decentralized Wallets

We’ve ranked the best decentralized wallets in the market. Summarized below are the core features and factors we focused on.

  • Complete Decentralization – At a minimum, all of the wallets ranked offer a decentralized experience. This means only the wallet user has access to the private keys. What’s more, users can send and receive funds without requiring approval from a third-party custodian. This ensures users have full control over their crypto investments.
  • Security – Decentralized wallets should offer adequate security features, although the specifics vary depending on the device type. For instance, hardware wallets are the most secure option, as private keys are always offline. Hardware wallets can also offer MPC and air-gapped security. Software wallets have alternative security features, such as two-factor authentication and biometrics.
  • Supported Coins – We prioritized decentralized wallets that support a wide range of coins, such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, BNB, and Solana. Additional preference was given to wallets supporting custom tokens on each network. For instance, if the wallet supports Ethereum, it should support all ERC-20 tokens.
  • Fees – We included a selection of free software wallets to ensure that budget-conscious investors are catered for. We also ranked hardware wallets with various price tags. For instance, the Trezor Model One costs just $59. In contrast, NGRAVE retails for $398. We also examined fees for additional features like token swaps, staking, and fiat purchases.
  • User-Friendliness – Some wallets are ideal for beginners, as they require little to no experience in crypto storage. That said, we also included decentralized wallets more suited for intermediate and advanced users. This ensures that all skill sets are catered for.
  • Device Type and Operating Systems – We included decentralized wallets for all device types, including desktop software, mobile apps, and browser extensions. The most popular operating systems are covered, such as Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iOS.

What is a Decentralized Cryptocurrency Wallet?

Decentralized crypto wallets are also known as ‘self-custody’ or ‘non-custodial’ wallets. They enable crypto investors to become their own bank. This is because decentralized wallets do not rely on custodians – such as exchanges. As such, users can send and receive crypto coins without needing approval from a third party.

What’s more, only the wallet owner has access to the private keys. This is essentially the wallet’s password – without it, access isn’t possible. Put otherwise, decentralized wallets are synonymous with keeping assets in a safe at home. In contrast, centralized wallets are controlled by intermediaries, meaning investors never truly own their coins.

For instance, if the crypto custodian is hacked and your account is impacted – your coins could be stolen. Similarly, transferring coins to another wallet requires authorization. This goes against the broader blockchain ethos – which believes in a decentralized, fair, and inclusive ecosystem for all.

Benefits of DeFi Crypto Wallets vs Centralized Wallets

This section explores the key benefits of using a decentralized crypto wallet.

Make Transfers Without Third-Party Approval

One of the core functions of a crypto wallet is sending and receiving coins. However, the process varies depending on whether the wallet is centralized or decentralized. 

  • For instance, let’s say you’re using a centralized wallet offered by Coinbase, Binance, or another popular exchange.
  • You want to transfer some Bitcoins from the exchange to another wallet.
  • You’d need to log into your account, request a withdrawal, and wait for the exchange to approve the transfer. 
  • The Bitcoins won’t reach the destination wallet until approval is received
  • This could take minutes, hours, or days.
  • Delays can happen for many reasons, such as a request for KYC documents

Now consider the transfer process when using a top DeFi wallet. You’d simply need to provide the destination address and authorize the transfer. For instance, by entering a PIN or by providing biometrics. Either way, the transfer is approved automatically, meaning the Bitcoins will be received in about 10 minutes.

Build Wealth and Become Your Own Bank

As mentioned, decentralized crypto wallets allow users to become their own bank. After all, there’s no reliance on custodians and other intermediaries. This isn’t the case when keeping coins in a centralized wallet. 

  • For instance, suppose you have $5,000 worth of Ethereum held in a crypto exchange account.
  • Only the exchange has access to the wallet’s private keys. This means they control the Ethereum coins, as transfers can’t be made without the exchange’s approval.
  • Now, let’s say the exchange is hacked, resulting in a loss of client funds – including your $5,000 Ethereum balance.
  • The exchange does not have the means to repay its clients – so it declares bankruptcy. This means your Ethereum coins are gone forever.

In contrast, you don’t need to trust the provider when using a decentralized wallet. You, as the wallet owner, are the only person with access to its private keys. So, even if the wallet provider runs into financial issues – this won’t impact your investments.

Put otherwise, your crypto assets are safe – even if the provider goes bust. This also means that, unlike a traditional bank, wallet balances can’t be frozen. Nor can accounts suddenly be closed for uncited reasons.

Access Web 3.0 Products On-Chain

We’ve established that the primary functions of decentralized wallets are storage and transacting That said, many decentralized wallets connect with Web 3.0 ecosystems. This means users can access on-chain products without using third-party intermediaries.   

For example, suppose you currently hold BNB. You want to swap some of those BNB coins for Ethereum. Ordinarily, you’d need to use a centralized exchange to complete the transaction. Once again, this means going through custodians and third parties.

Best Wallet offers a decentralized exchange

However, using a decentralized wallet means you can swap BNB for Ethereum without leaving the wallet interface. Similarly, some decentralized wallets support earning tools like staking and liquidity farming. This means you can earn yields on idle crypto assets without trusting a centralized provider.

Decentralized Wallets are Anonymous

Another benefit of using decentralized wallets is they offer an anonymous experience. Simply download and install the wallet to your preferred device type – no personal information is required. This means incoming and outgoing transactions are associated with a wallet address rather than your identity. 

Conversely, most centralized wallets are backed by exchanges – many of which have KYC processes. For instance, let’s say you’re using Coinbase’s web wallet. Before accessing the wallet you will have opened an account. In addition to personal information, this would have required a government-issued ID.

Therefore, any transactions sent from the Coinbase web wallet can be traced back to your identity documents. This isn’t the case when using a decentralized wallet. However, there is an exception – hardware wallets are usually purchased from the manufacturer. This means you’ll need to provide a name and delivery address, plus financial details.

Types of Decentralized Crypto Wallets

Decentralized crypto wallets can be downloaded as software or purchased as hardware devices. The key differences are summarized in the below sections.

Software Wallets

Software wallets are typically free to download and install. Supported device types and operating systems will depend on the wallet provider. For example, Best Wallet is available as a mobile app for iOS and Android. The wallet app is secured by traditional safety controls, such as facial biometrics.

Some software wallets are designed for browser extensions. Security is weaker when compared to mobile wallets – as they’re only secured by a password. That said, browser-based wallets are popular with active crypto traders, as they easily connect with exchanges. 

Another option is to download a desktop software wallet. These are often designed for Windows and Mac, although some providers also support Linux. Desktop wallets often come with two-factor authentication – meaning access also requires a secondary device.

Nonetheless, all software wallets are exposed to internet threats – such as hacking attempts, viruses, and phishing scams. A simple mistake – like clicking a suspicious link, can result in a wallet breach. Therefore, those with a safety-first mindset might be more suited to a hardware wallet.

Hardware Wallets

Hardware wallets are the safest way to store crypto coins. So, if you’re a long-term investor and/or you’re holding large balances – hardware wallets are a must. Unlike software wallets, they’re never connected to the internet. This is known as ‘cold storage,’ which removes virtually all hacking-related risks.

What’s more, transactions must be confirmed directly on the hardware device. This often requires a PIN. There are also hardware wallets that use air-gapped security. This removes the need for external connections like Bluetooth – which is another solid safeguard.

ELLIPAL Titan 2.0 Cold Wallet

Hardware wallets are still considered safe if they’re stolen. This is because hardware wallets come with a backup passphrase – which is usually a string of 12-24 words. Entering the passphrase on another wallet (software or hardware) will recover the funds – meaning the thief is left with a worthless device.

There are a couple of drawbacks to consider before choosing a hardware wallet. First, hardware wallets aren’t free. We discussed options ranging from $59 to $398, which might not be suitable for everyone. Second, although hardware wallets can connect with Web 3.0 applications, the process is more cumbersome when compared to software wallets.

Are Decentralized Wallets Safe?

In general, decentralized wallets are safe. However, some risks should still be considered. For a start, it’s important to remember that you’re 100% responsible for the crypto coins. After all, the wallet doesn’t rely on custodians and other third parties, so there’s nowhere to turn if things go wrong.

For example, let’s say you’re using a decentralized wallet app. You lose the smartphone that the app is installed on. Ordinarily, this isn’t an issue – as the wallet can be recovered via the backup passphrase. Entering the passphrase on any wallet will import the crypto coins to the new device.

However, if you’ve also misplaced the backup passphrase, those coins can never be recovered. Not even the wallet provider can access the required credentials. Similarly, let’s suppose the decentralized wallet is hacked. The thief will immediately transfer the coins to their own wallet.

This means the coins are gone – as per the anonymous nature of blockchain transactions. This is why hardware wallets are the safest option, as they don’t connect to internet servers. This means hacks are virtually impossible. If you do opt for a software wallet, ensure it offers adequate security controls, avoid clicking unknown links, and keep the passphrase safe.

How to Setup a Decentralized Crypto Wallet

We’ll now explain how to get started with a decentralized crypto wallet. This walkthrough shows the steps with Best Wallet – which is a secure and trusted wallet app for iOS and Android.

Step 1: Download Best Wallet

Visit the Best Wallet website and download the app to your smartphone.

Best Wallet review

This will ensure you’re downloading the official app.

Step 2: Set Up a New Wallet

Open the Best Wallet app to begin the setup process. Click on the ‘Create Wallet’ button and follow the on-screen security instructions.

You’ll be asked to choose a PIN and set up biometrics. These are required whenever you want to access the wallet balance. Next, Best Wallet will display 12 random words – this is your backup passphrase.

Best Wallet recovery phrase

Write them down in the right order. Before proceeding, make sure they’ve been written correctly. Keep the sheet of paper somewhere safe. If you lose access to the wallet, the backup passphrase will help recover the crypto coins.

Step 3: Add Crypto to Best Wallet

You’ve now set up and secured the Best Wallet app. The next step is to transfer some crypto coins to your wallet. Click on the ‘Receive’ button and choose which crypto you want to deposit. Make sure the correct network is selected.

A deposit address will then be displayed. Transfer the coins to this address. The coins will show in your Best Wallet balance in a few minutes. Although the time frame will vary depending on the network.

Receive coins on Best Wallet app

If you don’t have any coins to transfer, you can buy some on the Best Wallet app. Click on the ‘Buy’ button from the main wallet interface. Choose which coin you want to buy.

Select the purchase amount (e.g., $100), currency (e.g., USD), and payment type (e.g., credit card). The on-ramp provider will ask for a government-issued ID, as fiat money is being used. Complete the purchase, and the coins will be added to your Best Wallet balance.

Conclusion

Decentralized crypto wallets are the best option for long-term investors. They enable users to send, receive, and store crypto assets without third-party involvement. This means users can become their own crypto bank – without needing to worry about frozen accounts or blocked transactions.

However, no two decentralized wallets are the same, so users should consider their core requirements. Explore security controls, supported networks, and pricing, not to mention user-friendliness and side features like token swaps and staking.

FAQs

Which crypto wallets are decentralized?

What is the best decentralized wallet?

Is Binance wallet decentralized?

Are decentralized wallets better?

Are decentralized wallets safe?

Is Trust Wallet really decentralized?

Is MetaMask a decentralized wallet?

Is Coibase a decentralized wallet?

References

  1. Custody Services (Office of the Comptroller of the Currency)
  2. Crypto Investors Lost Nearly $4 Billion to Hackers in 2022 (CNBC)
  3. Verify Your Identity on Coinbase (Coinbase)
  4. Types of Crypto Wallets (Blockchain Council)

About ReadWrite’s Editorial Process

The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

Kane Pepi
Crypto Expert

Kane Pepi is a financial and cryptocurrency writer who has written over 2,000 articles, tutorials, and market analyses. Kane's expertise in specialized domains such as asset appraisal and analysis, portfolio management, and financial crime prevention has earned him a reputation for providing succinct explanations of difficult financial subjects. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance, a Master of Science in Financial Crime, and is currently working on his Doctorate degree, which will focus on the challenges of money laundering in the cryptocurrency and blockchain technology industries. Kane's wealth of industry experience make him a valuable resource for traders and…

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