If you’re looking to store your first Bitcoins and you own an Android mobile device this post is for you. However, before I review the best Android Bitcoin wallets out there I just want to give you a word of warning.
Mobile wallets (Android, or iOS) are the least secure form of Bitcoin wallets. This is mainly due to the fact that mobile devices tend to get stolen, lost and break down. If you hold your Bitcoins in a mobile wallet, it means that the private key is stored on the device, and therefor if the device is ruined or stolen you can’t access your coins.
Having said that, you can always create a backup for your wallet by using the 12-24 word seed phrase shown to you when you first install the wallet. That’s why it’s important to keep this seed phrase in a safe place and out of anyone else’s reach but your own. PROTECT YOURSELF!
Before we get started, I want to emphasize that COINBASE is NOT a WALLET. DON’T DO IT! Use coinbase to transfer bitcoins if you want to immediately CASH them out and get cash into your bank account…. or to buy Litecoin or Ether.
The BEST OPTION to store bitcoin wallets are HARDWARE Wallets. I will write about that in a separate article.
EDIT: WAIT! I Had to edit this article because my students asked for a recommendation on hardware wallets. So quickly, here is what I recommend. Hardware wallets are the ultimate in security. This particular wallet has a great price point and can be used as both a Bitcoin wallet AND an Ether wallet.
The winner is…. The Ledger Nano S ! For such security and privacy, you will have to pay just as you do with ANY hardware wallet. But the price point is affordable for everyone at $58. GET YOURS TODAY!
Now let us continue…
MyCelium is a popular mobile app wallet that features a wealth of advanced privacy and security features. Yes, the wallet can be a bit complicated for newbie users but it’s still one of the safest and fastest on the market. As an open source software program, MyCelium is constantly being upgraded. Go to the App Store, download it and go to https://wallet.mycelium.com/ for more information.
The wallet doesn’t have a web or desktop interface meaning coins can be accessed only through your mobile wallet. The good news is that you can use Mycelium together with a hardware wallet in order to get maximum security for your coins.
BitPay is a great wallet. SEe https://bitpay.com/wallet for more information. Not even BitPay can access your money.
Get real security by using a real wallet. Create a normal wallet for immediate payments, or lock down your security by requiring payments to be accepted by up to 12 different devices.
You can also buy and sell bitcoin directly to and from your wallet. Load and manage your BitPay Card (USA Only), accepted at all Visa® merchants and Visa® compatible ATMs worldwide.
It is available on all major mobile and desktop platforms. Find it on the iOS App Store, Google Play, available on Linux OS, Windows OS, macOS Sierra, and can be downloaded from Windows Store.
*** BREAKING NEWS! ***
Bitpay’s new statement about BitcoinCash and the Bitcoin Fork.
For users of the BitPay and Copay wallet apps, we also have no immediate plans to support BCC. Since these apps are true bitcoin wallets, users hold the private keys and have full, exclusive access to their funds. While users will not be able to observe a BCC balance or create BCC transactions with our apps at this time, it is possible to access BCC at a later date with additional software.
If you have a BitPay or Copay wallet, it is essential that you retain your wallets (or your backup words) and not delete them, even if you empty the BTC balance out of your wallets. While BitPay does not have any plans to write software to support BCC at this time, it is possible for third parties to build tools to allow access to BCC balances from Copay or BitPay wallets.
As a matter of fact, MOST wallets won’t allow you to access the BitcoinCash coins you receive. But don’t panic. There will be BitcoinCash clients out there. All you would have to do is install the BitcoinCash wallet and use the SAME Bitcoin wallet’s private key to access your BitcoinCash coins. So don’t panic. All is well!
Jaxx is one of my favorites because you can store multi-currencies including Bitcoin, Ether, DASH, ETC, and LTC. In addition, it is integrated with ShapeShift which allows you to exchange 1 cryptocurrency for another one right there in your wallet! Check out https://jaxx.io/ for more information.
You’re in control – The way it should be. All keys are created on your local device and never sent to any servers. This means you have full control of your wallet and Jaxx neither holds nor has access to your funds.
Coinomi is another one of my favorites. You can store A LOT of cryptocurrencies in this wallet. See photo below of all of their supported coins. WOW!
It is available on Android via Google Play Store and will be available in the IOS App Store soon!
This is one of the few wallets that is multi-lingual as well.
Go to the Play Store and go to http://coinomi.com. Very secure and anonymous!
That should get you started.
Remember the following rules when using a mobile wallet:
- Always set a pin code protection for your wallet if possible
- Never store large amounts of Bitcoin on your mobile wallet. We’ll talk about hardware wallets in another article
- Write down the 12-24 word seed you get when you set up your wallet and keep in a safe place.
Faith “CryptoQueenWiki” Sloan