Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)

Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)

Want to jump in the cryptocurrency world? You’re not alone. Statistics show that many people these days are interested in using cryptocurrencies at some point. Cryptocurrencies have vast applications. Some of the reasons why you may want to be in the cryptocurrency bandwagon include; using as a payment option, trading for money, in order to get off the radar from government control. Applications can be many, or you may also want to accrue cryptocurrency as assets to sell at a later date when the value is bumped up.

But before enjoying some of the benefits mentioned above, knowing where to get your crypto is also fundamental. You want to look for that platform where security is guaranteed, and you can also buy many assets as you like, availability of different altcoins, and even the amount of fees charged when buying or selling crypto. All of these are some of the critical factors that you should be considering before choosing a platform to buy/sell crypto. 

Looking at Gemini vs Coinbase, these are some of the platforms that you can use to buy crypto and have your first cryptocurrency assets. Both of the two platforms are quite popular, and choosing can be a hard task. But before jumping into any of the two bandwagons, we are going to break down to you some of the features offered by the two platforms. These range from exchange fees, availability, security, volume, and any other relevant information that can be valuable in your decision making.

In the end, your needs also matter. So, let us jump right into it already.

Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Want to jump in the cryptocurrency world @sarahjason447

Basic Information Gemini VS Coinbase

Before we dive into the feature of the respective exchangers, lets first have an introduction about the two platforms. Starting with Coinbase, it was started back in 2011 by Brian Armstrong and Fred Ehrsam. Coinbase has been around most of the cryptocurrency boom and is headquartered in California, USA.

The company started in Y-Combinator a startup accelerator program and received total funding of $5 million in the first round. Since then, Coinbase has grown into one of the most reputable exchanges around the world, allowing people to buy, sell, or store their cryptocurrency in its wallet.

Gemini, on the other hand, is also another digital currency exchange platform that was started back in 2014. Master heads of Gemini are Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss. The company is a New York Trust company led by the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS). Although Gemini came at a later date, the platform has hit several milestones in the general cryptocurrency industry. Gemini boasts itself as The Regulated Cryptocurrency Exchange.

Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Coinbase app @coinbase

Ease of Use Gemini VS Coinbase

Both of the two platforms are not complicated to use. Ease of use highly contributes to whether a platform is appropriate or not, especially when your hard-earned money is at the center of the equation. Gemini as a cryptocurrency exchange is more sophisticated than Coinbase. Gemini has more buying options that I’d say were solely meant for pro-traders or people who know their ways around trading. Gemini has more buying and selling options like limit orders, stop orders, Good-till-day (GTD) and even Market Buy/Sell orders, among others. 

Coinbase is pretty easy to use; you do not need to know what a GTD is, by the way. Coinbase provides the best alternative for novice users with a pretty simple to use platform, which sets the platform at its unique position in the industry.

Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Gemini buy btc screen

Transaction Fees Gemini VS Coinbase

Since buying cryptocurrency is similar to buying the legacy stocks and assets in the stock market, transaction fees come in to play also. Fees charged can be pretty low, but over time, this accumulates into a large number for those who would like to trade on a regular basis. 

When it comes to fees comparison between the two platforms, Gemini offers lower fees than Coinbase. Coinbase supports variant methods that you can be able to buy/sell cryptocurrency. Coinbase charges fees depending on the method used in purchasing cryptocurrency. Apart from that, Coinbase also charges a flat fee for all transactions below $200. But you don’t need to worry about that, the amount to be charged will be blatantly indicated when you want to make a transaction.

Coinbase fees

So, Coinbase’s mode of charging fees can be a bit complicated. However, between the two modes of charging, Coinbase will choose the one that bags them more money!

Coinbase charges a 3.99% transaction fee when you use your Credit Card or Debit Card, 1.49% when using your Coinbase wallet and a 1.49% ($0.15 minimum) when using a US bank account. Bank transfers, on the other hand, are free, but withdrawal attracts a $0.15 transaction fee. Keep in mind that not all supported countries will have all the payment options available.

Gemini fees

Gemini does not charge deposit fees. That does not mean your bank won’t cost you money, of course, in most cases, they will do so keep that in mind. On Gemini, only withdrawals are slammed with a transaction fee. Although I previously bashed Coinbase for having a complicated mechanism of charging fees, Gemini does the job in its unique way also. Fees charged depend on the number of transactions a user has made in the recent past, also known as Dynamic Maker-Taker Fee. But again, it also depends on the type of account; Gemini offers individuals and institutions that exchange large volumes of crypto. 

Withdrawal Type Cost (≤ 10 per calendar month per withdrawal) Cost (> 10 per calendar month per withdrawal)
Bitcoin Free 0.001 BTC2
Ether Free 0.001 ETH
Litecoin Free 0.002 LTC
Free 0.002 BCH
Zcash Free 0.002 ZEC
Free Free
ACH Free Free
Free Free
Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Gemini Crypto Security

Supported Countries Gemini VS Coinbase

Exchangers have restrictions on the countries they support also. That is why you should go for an exchanger that supports your locale. Both Coinbase and Gemini do support the western countries and leave the other market places.

Gemini supported countries

  • United States
  • Canada
  • United Kingdom
  • South Korea
  • Hong Kong
  • Singapore

Coinbase supported countries

Coinbase, on the other hand, is way better given its support for many jurisdictions, unlike Gemini. The platform currently supports 100 different countries globally. Regions covered by Coinbase include; Africa, North America, South America, Australia, Europe, and Asia.

Since the list is pretty big, I will just highlight the number of countries supported in each region. If you want the full link, you can go to 

List of Coinbase supported countries based on areas

  • Africa; 18 countries including Ghana, Angola, Kenya, South Africa, etc
  • Asia; 21 countries supported including Japan, India, Singapore, and many others
  • Australia; 2 countries including Australia and New Zealand.
  • Europe; 41 countries including Austria, Belgium, France, United Kingdom, etc.
  • North America; 18 countries supported such as Canada, Mexico, United States, etc.
  • South America; 8 countries supported including Argentina, Brazil, Chile etc.
Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Gemini Crypto Payments

Assets That You Can Buy: Gemini VS Coinbase

Well, before you get too excited that your country is supported, there is an important aspect that you should consider, also. And that is whether the type of assets you want to buy is supported on the exchanger. Taking Coinbase, for example, has support for many countries, but does it offer many assets to buy as well? Or will Gemini blow it out in this category…

We are going to find that in a few.

Starting with Coinbase, the platform supports only five cryptocurrencies at the moment. Starting with Bitcoin, of course, and the other four altcoins. 

All the supported coins on Coinbase include the following;

  • Bitcoin
  • Bitcoin Cash
  • Litecoin
  • Ethereum
  • XRP

Now moving to its contender in this review, Gemini also supported are also not many. Gemini supports the following cryptocurrencies;

  • Bitcoin
  • Bitcoin Cash
  • Litecoin
  • Ethereum
  • Z cash
Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Coinbase crypto portfolio

Volume Gemini VS Coinbase

It is not just a question of whether you can buy a cryptocurrency on a given platform or not. The total volume available is also crucial. Cryptocurrency volume data from shows Coinbase’s cryptocurrency volume edges out Gemini by a large margin in the last six months. Putting this into perspective, Coinbase has traded a total of 3.49 million BTC from March 25th to Sept 9th. Its contender, on the other hand, Gemini has only traded 447,000 BTC in a similar period with a 2.82% market share while Coinbase leads the market with a 22.06% share.

That may be as a result of Coinbase playing a fundamental role in helping users easily buy their first coins on the platforms. Gemini being a sophisticated platform with variant trading options, a first timer may have it rough juggling between the different types of orders and market limits available. 

Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Gemini Refer a Friend

Security Gemini VS Coinbase

Both Gemini and Coinbase have implemented severe security measures to protect the money of their respective users. One thing that both companies have embraced is separating their customers’ money from their own money that they need to run daily operations. 

Gemini security features

Firstly, Gemini has stood out in the market is one of the few exchanges to provide institutional level custody services for crypto assets. Secondly, Gemini was also the first cryptocurrency exchanger and custodian to demonstrate SOC 2 Type 1 examination that entails the security measures implemented by the platform to ensure they protect both their customer data and funds. 

Further, Gemini has held much of its cryptocurrency in an offline, air-gapped Cold Storage system only leaving a small portion of their total cryptocurrency assets in their “fully-insured, online Hot Wallet.”

  • Hot wallet access only granted to high-level employees.
  • The online hot wallet has multi-factor authentication
  • Has two levels of cold storage for advanced security 
  • Website data transmitted over encrypted Transport Layer Security like HTTPS
  • All Hot Wallet private keys are managed in the AWS CloudHSM service
  • Has Content-security policy (CSP) and HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS) features found in modern browsers.
  • All remote-access requires public-key authentication via credentials stored on hardware tokens, thus preventing phishing attacks.

Security features implemented on the user side include the following

  • Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) via Authy OneTouch
  • Supports Hardware Security Keys and WebAuthn support
  • Address Whitelisting – allows you to restrict cryptocurrency assets withdrawal for your account or only allow to a list of whitelisted addresses.
  • Gemini encrypts all your personal data, including your passwords, personal information, and other sensitive information.
  • Among others

Coinbase security features

Coinbase, on the other hand, also embraces good security practices to keep their customers’ cryptocurrency assets from malicious actors. It also stores the majority of customer funds in cold storage, 98% to be specific. The platform also has support for 2-Step Verification enabling you to add another security layer to your account apart from the usual passwords.

  • All passwords are stored in a hashed form in their database
  • Scrutinizes on secure and strong passwords when signing up.
  • Application credentials are segregated from the database and codebase.
  • Coinbase employees undergo criminal background check upon hire
  • Coinbase uses AES-256 encryption for both wallets and private keys.
  • Data exchanged between a user, and their website runs entirely over encrypted SSL (i.e., https)
  • Drives and paper backups distributed geographically in safe deposit boxes and vaults around the world.
Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Gemini Screen

But Coinbase vs. Gemini who offers better security? 

From the listed security measures above, you can note that both of the two exchangers treat security as a priority. Sorry for those who did not get some of them. However, you might be asking who offers better protection than the other. Gemini does offer extreme security features, and with their SOC 2 Type 1 examination certification, you can sure bet on them for that. However, Coinbase does provide excellent security, as well. 

But with that said, keep in mind storing your crypto assets on an exchange for the long term is not advisable. Instead, you are advised to opt for cold storage services by yourself by purchasing Cold storage hardware like USB flash made for that purpose.

Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Gemini Tools

Regulation Gemini VS Coinbase

Gemini is a New York trust company regulated by the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS). That means Gemini complies with both cryptocurrency asset regulation and consumer protection. Coinbase is also a regulated cryptocurrency exchange.

Deposit Methods Gemini VS Coinbase

Both Coinbase and Gemini offer their users various ways of depositing funds into their respective accounts. Coinbase offers variant deposit channels, but it varies depending on the country in question also. You can deposit funds to Coinbase via Credit or Debit Card, PayPal, and even bank transfer.

On Gemini, you can deposit funds via bank transfer and several cryptocurrency channels that you can use. You can deposit money as cryptocurrency using Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, ZCash, and LiteCoin, in short, all of the cryptocurrency assets supported at Gemini as we had looked at earlier. For withdrawals on Gemini, you can use Wire transfer and Bank transfer for fiat currency available.

Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Coinbase web and mobile @coinbase

Platforms Available Gemini VS Coinbase

Gemini is available on Web of course and can also be accessed using mobile via its Mobile Platform. Besides the company does have mobile applications for both Android and iOS tailored for optimum experience on mobile. However, their mobile platform is also quite impressive and should work just fine for those who do not prefer using the app. 

Coinbase has support for both mobile and web. The mobile application is available for both Android and iOS, so that caters to the needs of almost, if not all mobile users. Additionally, you can use their website, which is easy to navigate.

Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Coinbase buy bitcoin screen @coinbase

Customer Support Gemini VS Coinbase

On support, Coinbase offers a support page which contains relevant questions you might be having surrounding your account, buying and selling of crypto assets, payment methods offered, merchant services, security, privacy, and other issues. Besides, you can also use the chatbot embedded on the website to help you quickly find answers to questions on the support page. But as much as the company offers several pre-answered questions, human support is also essential. The support team can be reached via email or phone numbers provided on the website. Apart from these, you can also rely on their social channels for support, including their Twitter and Facebook pages.

Turning over to Gemini, the platform also offers a knowledge base that answers most of the frequent asked questions about the platform. Gemini, just like Coinbase, also provides support via email. Sadly, there is no support via call, but you can also utilize their social presence on Facebook and Twitter for that.

Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)

Pros and Cons of Gemini vs Coinbase

Coinbase Pros

  • Safe and secure cryptocurrency exchange
  • Good volume
  • Supports many countries 
  • Impressive User interface

Coinbase Cons

  • Limited cryptocurrency assets available
  • Fees are quite high compared to some other exchanges

Gemini Pros

  • Low fees
  • Secure exchange and multi-currency wallet
  • Fully licensed crypto exchange

Gemini Cons

  • Few methods of deposit available
  • Limited coins supported
  • No margin trading
  • Supports a few number of countries
Crypto Showdown: Gemini VS Coinbase (2019)
Gemini app

Although each of the two exchangers comes with its pros and cons. Coinbase is best suited for novice users, but pro traders will find it not as useful as Gemini. Although the fees are quite high, Coinbase is suitable for beginners with easy processes of buying crypto assets.

Gemini is meant for pro traders, although the platform does not offer margin trading, unlike its peers. However, the platform stands firmly against Coinbase with low transaction fees and extreme security features.  The bottom line is deciding whether Coinbase or Gemini is suitable for your use, largely depends on your purpose. Let us know in the comments below if you’re already using one of these systems to invest your money. Learn how to invest smarter by checking out “Easy Investing with Webull & Robinhood (Review & Comparison)“.

Be sure to also check out our other content at BestandVS.

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