The collapse of the FTX cryptocurrency exchange earlier in 2022 sent ripples of shock across the entire market, forcing users to question the reliability of the centralized storage solutions they were being offered by trading venues. The aftermath of the exchange’s failure saw a sudden increase in interest towards the types of wallets available on the market, specifically non-custodial solutions.
Custodial wallets are the default option for digital asset storage on various centralized exchanges, giving users access to their assets on-the-fly. Such wallets have an important shortcoming in security terms – the private keys are retained by a third party – the exchange, meaning that users do not have custody of their funds. Though such a measure does limit users’ functionality to sending and receiving digital assets, they do enjoy higher convenience in usability and the luxury of being able to restore passwords in case they are lost.
Non-custodial wallet solutions, also known as free of custody wallets, are decentralized applications that transfer all asset security responsibility and private keys to the user side. The users are in full charge of their assets and the security of their access credentials. Such wallets are not as convenient, as they require repeated login every time the user wishes to assess their funds, and there is no opportunity for password recovery in case it is lost.
In this material, we will explore the best non-custodial wallets available on the market and explain which crypto wallet among the list is the best for beginners in the crypto space.
The NOW Wallet application kicks off the list as one of the best decentralized wallets out there. Fast, secure and fully adapted to mobile devices, this crypto wallet app is the brainchild of the development team behind the hugely popular ChangeNOW Crypto Exchange – one of the vastest and most comprehensive cryptocurrency trading venues on the market.
The product is relatively new, as it has been fielded little more than a year ago, but it has managed to attract a significant following thanks to the massive amount of features included in it. NOW Wallet easily matches most other Dapps wallet solutions from the top by offering users direct exchange facilities inside the application thanks to the integrated ChangeNOW exchanger service, which also allows the purchase of cryptocurrencies for fiat. As such, NOW Wallet frees users from having to transfer their assets to external exchanges and lose on their commissions for performing operations.
As one of the best crypto wallets in the lineup, NOW Wallet boasts a round-the-clock support service, an exchange rate oriented in the benefit of the user, and a regularly updated list of supported assets. Alongside the desktop crypto wallet that can be downloaded from the exchange’s website, NOW Wallet boasts mobile versions for iOS and Android.
Among the other key advantages is the streamlined and comprehensive interface optimized for mobile devices, making it extremely friendly for newcomers into crypto. The wallet supports more than 40 blockchain networks and virtually all popular cryptocurrencies, bringing the total to over 500 on the list and 70,000 currency pairs.
When it comes to security, NOW Wallet piggybacks on the success of its host ChangeNOW exchange, which has excelled at perfecting its embedded security measures. The development team is constantly introducing new updates and has recently added protection against dust attacks, allowing the wallet to conceal spam transactions.
Among the additional features included in NOW Wallet are:
- Purchase and sale of cryptocurrencies for fiat;
- Staking options for BNB, NOW, TRX, ATOM, SOL, and XTZ;
- Facilities for storing, transferring and receiving NFTs;
- 1% cashback from every transaction with the native NOW token through the ChangeNOW Pro application;
- Availability of WalletConnect via QR code, giving direct links to any decentralized application on the Ethereum, BSC, Polygon, AVAX, Algorand, Fantom, and Optimism networks;
- Multiple portfolio creation options for various personal and business applications;
- Custom token addition options.
Among the drawbacks that keep NOW Wallet from occupying an absolute leading position is the lack of support for cold wallets, such as Trezor and Ledger Wallet.
Coinbase is a long-standing player on the crypto market, which has attracted the trust and admiration of millions of users. The Coinbase Wallet, a product of the Coinbase exchange, is a self-custody wallet that is being positioned as a solution giving users complete control over their assets. The decentralized application is truly convenient in that it hands over control of private keys to the users and ensures that they are stored directly on the host mobile device, not the parent Coinbase exchange and its servers.
As an established mobile application with roots into its parent exchange, the wallet supports all Ethereum network based ERC-20 tokens and assets released on EVM-compatible chains. The latter include Avalanche, Polygon, C-Chain, and others. Stablecoins are also among the lineup supported by the list on Coinbase wallet and include such favorites as USDC, DAI, USDT, and all others released on networks Coinbase grants support to.
Security is a serious business for Coinbase, which is why the Coinbase wallet boasts the presence of Secure Enclave Technology, which is specifically designed for storing private keys. Among the traditional lineup of security layers is 2-Factor Authentication via Google Authenticator, SMS authentication, phone number verification, and some others. Combined, these features provide ample layers of protection for ensuring the safety of user funds and access credentials.
Coinbase prides itself on the abundance of features it provides its users, and Coinbase Wallet is no different, as it includes the following options:
- Staking for or ALGO, ATOM, ETH, XTZ, ADA, and SOL;
- Facilities for transferring, storing and receiving NFTs;
- Browser-based decentralized application version;
- Crypto lending facilities;
- Market news and trend aggregator, revealing popular tokens and applications.
When it comes to drawbacks, some users have stated that the Coinbase Wallet has a rather cluttered interface and newcomers will find it difficult to onboard quickly. Another bizarre disadvantage is the lack of support for the Bitcoin network, meaning users will not be able to store BTC in their Coinbase Wallet.
A mainstay of the market that has been making traction for some time, positioning itself as a decentralized, non-custodial wallet with support for multiple cryptocurrencies and networks. Atomic Wallet has the necessary options for being called a cross-platform application, since it has both a desktop and a mobile version, the latter supporting iOS and Android devices. The built-in features of the wallet make it ideal for making swaps, exchanges, and conversion operations with a variety of digital assets.
Atomic Wallet has a special retention program based on a reward system that allows users to earn rewards right inside the application for various actions. Users can stake various cryptocurrencies and receive cashback for transactions as part of the program, which has effectively made the wallet a host platform for over 500 cryptocurrencies. The round-the-clock support service is also always at hand to provide troubleshooting.
In terms of security, Atomic Wallet may seem a bit old-fashioned at first, but it is deceitfully sophisticated when it comes to effectiveness. The wallet will require users to log in using their passwords, while conceiving several protection layers. Accounts can also be recovered using a randomly generated 12-word backup seed phrase that is provided at the user registration stage.
Additional features are what makes a non-custodial wallet stand out from their cold wallet counterparts, and Atomic Wallet certainly has some interesting options on offer, namely:
- Staking options for ATOM, ETH, XTZ, SOL, TRX, and other coins, 15 in total;
- Built-in facilities for the purchase of cryptocurrencies for fiat;
- 1% cashback for every exchange and purchase operation conducted via the application;
- Real-time cryptocurrency and digital asset price charts aggregated from online resources.
Atomic Wallet does not have that many disadvantages to speak of, apart from the fact that it does not have support for hardware wallets.
The Guarda Wallet is an application that is being positioned as a go-to, all-in-one decentralized wallet with non-custodial storage for users seeking a reliable and proven solution capable of safeguarding their many assets. The Guarda Wallet has both desktop and mobile versions, the latter being available on iOS and Android, making it accessible from any device with an internet connection. More importantly, it has crypto trading facilities built into the application, making exchange, swap and trading operations a breeze.
On the security side, Guarda Wallet does not stand out with any extraordinary solutions. It is a classical non-custodial wallet that grants its users full custody of their funds. Even if the parent company behind Guarda goes bankrupt, users can be certain that their assets will be safe and they will be able to withdraw them.
As a long-standing player on the cryptocurrency market, Guarda Wallet offers its users a host of classical and convenient features:
- Facilities for the purchase of cryptocurrencies for fiat;
- Staking options for 15 coins, including ATOM, ETH, XTZ, ADA, TRX, NOW and others;
- Up to 1% cashback for every operation made using the application;
- WalletConnect integration for connection to various decentralized applications;
- Crypto loan facilities in USDT and USDC.
NFT storing feature is unavailable at this moment.
The last non-custodial storage solution on the list is the Phantom Wallet – a simple and secure option for both novice and experienced users. The wallet is specifically designed for streamlining cross-chain interaction within the Solana ecosystem through the integration of multiple functions and features that allow users to transfer and receive a host of cryptocurrencies right inside the application.
As a browser-based wallet, Phantom prides itself on the security level it provides. The company is stating that the wallet’s underlying code was audited by the top software auditing firm Kudelski Security in independent fashion, revealing no vulnerabilities or flaws.
Like any non-custodial wallet worth its salt, Phantom Wallet offers users a number of interesting features:
- NFT storage options;
- Compatibility with the Ledger hardware wallet as an added security feature;
- Staking options for Solana’s native SOL token;
- Low fees as an added benefit from the Solana basis of the wallet.
As can be derived, the biggest drawback of the Phantom Wallet is its Solana ecosystem basis, meaning that users will be able to interact only with tokens and NFTs present inside the given network.
A crypto wallet is important as a means of storage, but there are caveats, since questions arise whether the selected crypto wallet is safe. All of the wallets on the list are worthy of attention for their many advantages and distinguishing features. However, if one is to be singled out, NOW Wallet occupies the first slot for a reason – it is an all-round non-custody wallet from a proven firm with a vast range of features and both on-ramp and off-ramp options.