Let’s face it, Binance is an absolute beast of the cryptocurrency world. Having launched less than five years ago, it’s quickly grown into one of the world’s largest crypto exchanges, rivaling Coinbase, Huobi, and Kraken while consistently vying for that number one spot.
Founded in 2017 by CZ (Changpeng Zhao), a charismatic Chinese developer, it didn’t take long for Binance to take over. After setting Binance up in China, CZ quickly moved the company, first to Japan then to Taiwan, because of increasingly stringent market regulations.
Binance owes a lot of its quick success to unshackling itself from regulation and oversight. By moving from Taiwan to Malta via Bermuda, Jersey, and the Cayman Islands with an office in Singapore, Binance has kept one step ahead of its regulators and competitors, allowing it to grow and build upon its prior triumphs with a feature-rich and easy-to-use platform.
Now, Binance is a global company, with clients in over a hundred countries and customer support in seven languages. For Americans, Binance US is available in over 40 states and complies with all applicable US laws.
With that out of the way, in this Binance review we’re going to take a closer look at what makes Binance one of the biggest and most daring players in the global cryptocurrency investing frenzy.
Range of Offerings
Binance is one of the market’s leading crypto exchanges. Binance offers traditional brokerage and exchange services with one of the most extensive crypto coin lists you’ll see. Depending on where you live, Binance users can also buy crypto with a debit or credit card. In addition, Binance offers its own native coin – Binance Coin (BNB) – which comes with super-friendly rates and rewards.
On Binance, traders get access to:
- Spot trading
- Futures & Options
- Earning (locked and fixed, decentralized finance staking and yield farming)
- Pooling (mining, staking pools and rewards)
Binance Lite is the default application and it’s perfect for newbies. Binance Lite offers a slimmed-down features list and a more user-friendly trading experience for rookie traders.
If you have a little more experience, then switch over to Binance Pro with the click of a button. Binance Professional is jam-packed with tools and features, making it ideal for seasoned traders and people looking to access crypto derivatives.
Binance Futures allows traders to place more sophisticated, long and short trades, with leverage up to 125x.
Futures traders get access to markets on a select number of coins, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and Stellar.
Binance users can also use Binance Options to trade crypto options, with markets on Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, and Binance Coin. Binance options are low risk but come with a maximum duration of a day.
Click here for a full list of the features.
Binance offers some of the most competitive rates out there. Because of its size, Binance is able to offer its traders some of the lowest maker/taker fees on the market.
Like most exchanges, Binance operates on a maker/taker fee structure, where most takers pay 0.1% per slide.
This is definitely one of the hottest selling points of Binance. On top of that, rates decrease if you’re trading significant volumes every month.
If you’re using Binance Coin (BNB), Binance’s native coin, you get access to lower trading fees.
Binance Futures is even more competitive, with a 0.02% fee.
When it comes to debit and credit cards by Visa and MasterCard, Binance operates on a 2% variable fee. While this isn’t the lowest on the market, it still edges out Binance’s biggest competitor Coinbase.
Ease of Account Opening
Binance offers new traders an extremely straightforward pathway to set up an account.
All it takes is 5 steps to get a fully authenticated account on Binance where you can buy/trade/sell crypto and fiat:
- Open an account: Fill out the account set-up. You only need to provide your email if you plan on trading crypto for crypto.
- 2FA: Set up two-factor authentication. This can be SMS or Google Authenticator.
- Deposit coins: If you want to deposit crypto, you can now go ahead and deposit your funds using a dropdown list of possible coins. There are over 500 coins on Binance with more being added all the time, so you might have to scroll for a while.
- Trade: It shouldn’t take more than 20 minutes for your crypto to appear in your wallet, ready for trading. Hover over ‘Exchange’ and select either ‘Basic’ or ‘Advanced.’
- Level 2 ID (Optional): Upload a picture of your passport or driver’s license, and enter your card details if you want to buy Bitcoin with a debit or credit card.
>> Check out the massive guide we wrote on how to use Binance exchange.
When you download Binance, the default app is Binance Lite. The Lite version is perfect for newbies and beginner traders looking to carry out the basics and gain some simple exposure to the cryptocurrency industry. With Binance Lite, you get access to all the major features and it should be more than enough for new starters.
Seasoned traders can switch from Binance Lite to Binance Professional. That’s when things get a little more complex. Binance Professional gives users access to myriad trading tools, advanced charts and order books.
Binance Professional is awesome for experienced traders. For newbies, it can be complicated and confusing. The sheer number of trading options can be overwhelming, overheating your brain and phone.
So, if you’re just starting out, stick to Binance Lite.
Deposits and Withdrawals
If you want to buy crypto with a UK credit or debit card, you get access to a limited number of coins on their brokerage service:
If you want to trade crypto, though, there are over 500 crypto coins, including
- And literally hundreds more.
When it comes to withdrawal limits, you’re limited to trading 2 BTC per day if you haven’t provided ID.
Taking a selfie with some ID gets you Level 2 verification and your withdrawal limit increases to 100 BTC. There’s no charge for depositing or withdrawing funds using crypto.
If you’re buying crypto with a UK debit/credit card, you need to submit a copy of your passport or driver’s licence. There’s a 2% fee for using a UK debit or credit card.
You can also pay via direct bank transfer using Faster Payments Network. There’s no fee with bank transfers but you will be hit with a withdrawal charge.
Withdrawal times using crypto tend to be twenty minutes or less on Binance. Withdrawing fiat currency takes a little longer.
Platform and Trading Experience
Traders can access Binance on its website and mobile crypto trading app. You can use Binance on:
Overall, Binance might not be quite as user-friendly for rookies as a couple other trading exchanges. But it’s still smooth, sleek, and relatively instinctive to use.
Binance Lite, the default download, is better suited for first-time traders and people looking to buy crypto with a debit or credit card.
If you want to access Binance’s next-level trading experience, then switch over to Binance Professional. Here, the trading experience gets very complicated very quickly.
If you’re new to trading, the overwhelming number of options, coins, and charts might result in poor decisions and confusion.
Though, if you’re on Binance to learn about trading, then its many options and features are excellent for upskilling.
Like practically all crypto exchanges out there, Binance doesn’t have much to write home about when it comes to customer support.
There’s a decent self-service section on the site. You can access account issues, a pretty detailed FAQ on their site which goes through most of the general account issues, and a good number of articles on introductions to trading, what is crypto, etc.
If you don’t find your answer in the FAQ, the users can submit a query to the Binance team. Responses are usually within around 24h. There is also a live chat where you can type in your questions. Responses can take anywhere from 15 minutes to 24 hours.
Binance is also on all the major social networks. You can always try sending a message on Twitter and see if they respond.
Regulation and Security
Binance got hacked in 2019 for 7,000 BTC which, at the time, was worth US $40m. Unsurprisingly, this damaged Binance’s reputation for a while. Surprisingly, perhaps, it did little to slow the company’s insane growth.
Maybe this was because customers didn’t actually lose any money due to the hack. This was down to Binance’s Secure Asset Fund (SAFU), set up in 2018. By taking 10% off all trading fees, SAFU acts as reserve fund, reimbursing customers if (and when) they’re hacked.
Then, there was a scathing report by Forbes in 2020, and, in May 2021, the IRS and DoJ opened investigations into Binance on claims of money laundering and tax offenses.
While this might all sound serious and a little off-putting, this is nothing new when it comes to crypto exchanges. Crypto is new and the market is volatile. Plus, added scrutiny equals tougher security and Binance is one of the safest of all crypto exchanges.
Binance works with Chainanalysis Inc., a blockchain forensics firm with ties to US federal agencies to improve its security systems. It’s also recently hired a former Treasury official and boasts a Democrat Senator as adviser.
Since 2019, it seems like Binance has doubled down on security. Users have to set up 2FA – SMS or Google Authenticator. This means you get sent a unique pin every time you access your Binance account.
You also have to authorize your devices to use Binance. All this means is clicking the link on a confirmation email, but it means anyone trying to access your account on a different device will be stopped.
Binance also offers Wallet Address Management which limits withdrawal addresses. New ones require email authentication.
And, finally, there’s Binance’s Anti-phishing code, which takes a codeword from your account, and uses it for authentication.
It’s a crazy world out there with threats coming in from all sides. Scams, phishing, and hacks are commonplace, as are punitive and overzealous regulations. But through it all, Binance just keeps on growing and toughening its security. If you want safety, then Binance is one of the best in the business.
The Verdict of This Binance Review
Sheer size means more coins, more complex trading options and more competitive rates, and this is exactly what Binance gives its traders.
Binance’s two platforms, Lite and Professional, mean there’s something for everyone, from a slick, pared-back introductory platform for newbies to an extensive trading platform full of advanced charts and trade books for seasoned traders.
Binance doesn’t have a totally clean bill of health and the IRS is on its tail, but at the moment, Binance is one of the clear winners of the bitcoin revolution.
Binance is one of the biggest crypto exchanges in the world. Operating in over 100 countries and 40 states, Binance offers basic to advanced trading features.
Binance offers some of the toughest security features in the crypto game. If you really want your coins to be safe, move them to an external wallet.
You can access Binance US, which complies with all regulations and is available in 40 states.
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