Cryptocurrencies for trading
BTC, ETH, BCH, LTC, DOGE
ACH Bank Transfer
Guarantee stop loss
Negative balance protection
Withdrawals: variable (crypto)/$75 (fiat)
Trade Costs: variable
In this Robinhood review, we go over the US-based platform where you can purchase cryptocurrencies. The article aims to bring forth latest information regarding the exchange in terms of trade attractiveness and features. These features are its registration process, verification requirements, regional serviceability, customer service, fees, and security. We conclude with pros and cons are comparable with other, similar platforms.
History & Development
Robinhood started out as a Smartphone trading center by entrepreneurs Vladimir Tenev and Baiju Bhatt in 2013. The headquarters locate themselves in Palo Alto, California. The company behind this platform is working not only with cryptocurrencies. Its main revenue channel is securities, while crypto trade started out at the beginning of the year 2018. A separate subsidiary called Robinhood Crypto LLC. was established for that particular reason.
The company started operations through a crowdsale, after which it had around $1.3 billion valuations. The fundraising was a huge success, even though the entire marketplace was set to operate on mobile platforms only. Even up to this day, only iOS and Android users can actually enter the market through their devices.
Registration and Verification
To create an account at Robinhood, you need a mobile phone as the platform is available only on that platform. Both iPhone and Android users are supported, while web browsing is not possible at this moment. Using the mobile app, the Robinhood Investment (Robinhood’s name on Apple Store) is available for free. You register normally as with other platforms, providing your email and password.
As for the verification and privacy, at the registration phased, you need to provide full details about yourself. The identity check starts together with the registration process. You can expect to provide your address, bank information, first & last name, and scanned personal documents. You can check out the registration (and verification) form in the picture below.
Accepted Countries & Support
This is where the platform shows its first real limitation. Up till this point, only US citizens and traders can use the platform’s services. The company, since it is licensed by Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), operates solely on the American soil. Currently, the company is looking to establish operations in Australia as well, though it will take few months for the process to complete.
Unlike Bitfinex, eToro, and Binance, Robinhood does not provide its products globally but rather concentrates on the US only. And when we say the US, we really mean following states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Utah, and Wisconsin.
As for the customer support, you have FAQ section and ticket system, accessible through both phone and web browser. The entire marketplace, as well as communication with customer representatives, is possible through your iPhone or Android. Though, recent reviews have pointed out that tickets do have longer response rates than in the past.
You have the ability to deposit fiat money and trade with USD through credit cards and PayPal. You can also use Apple Store or Google Play to transfer money inside your Robinhood account. The fees for deposit are nonexistent, while withdrawals do hold a cost tag (see section fees).
The process is quite easy to use and funds are usually available within 10 minutes from the moment you made a payment.
Robinhood deems itself as one of the cheapest trading platforms in the world due to their zero-fees policy. What you do have to take into account is that outgoing transfers (withdrawals) cost you $75. You also have network fees, which varies on day-to-day depending on the blockchain’s level of traffic and number of confirmations. Apart from these, you also have minimum order size of 0.00001 BTC and 0.001 ETH.
All information in the app is encrypted, as well as content on the website. More importantly, the company ensures your assets. This means that even if a hacking attack happens, you get your coins back due to the agreement you have signed/taped. The company operates under the US financial laws, meaning it needs to provide safety measures for your assets.
Furthermore, the company also invested I the security measures where their servers are concerned. Attacks have not been reported thus far, showing the strength of defenses against cyber attacks. Additionally, since business is licensed, you also have the opportunity to sue the company in case of trade agreement infringement.
Thus, it definitely offers more security than platforms like Binance and Bittrex, both of which do not hold a license issued by a governmental body.
Trade & Exchange
At this stage, we do need to mention that mobile apps have an interface that does not allow a large amount of shown data. Still, Robinhood does offer charts and historical values while providing you with trading form. You can check out the picture taken from the phone app below.
As with any other trading platform, you have several markets to trade at. These are Market and Limit orders. The main currency of trade is USD while other functions are not available at this point. Some of the examples of missing tools are such as Good ‘Til Cancelled, Fill or Kill and others. This is where Bitfinex has an upper hand, as the platform offers the more complex marketplace.
Additionally, there is no leveraging service at this moment, meaning that Robinhood platform does not offer margin trading. Currently, you can trade with bitcoins and Ethereum only.
Pros & Cons
- Offers a variety of markets apart from cryptocurrencies
- Very low to no fees
- One of the most secure places to purchase coins
- Services are available only for few selected US States
- Apart from a mobile device, no other platform is supported
- No complex margin trading functions nor leveraging
In this Robinhood review, we went over the platform’s ability to attract new clients and keep the old ones. Suffice to say, the platform is one of the most secure places to trade it, what with its licensed operations. Furthermore, traders have an option to deposit fiats and trade bitcoins and Ethereum with it.
Unfortunately, these features are available only for citizens living in the US. Although fees are low, the only mobile platform is available at this point.