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Exodus vs. Coinbase

Coinbase is the easiest crypto platform to use for beginners

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Exodus and Coinbase are two major cryptocurrency companies that offer cryptocurrency exchanges, cryptocurrency wallets, and other features useful to crypto buyers, sellers, holders, and enthusiasts.

Coinbase is a large centralized exchange that acts similarly to a stockbroker facilitating the purchase and sale of supported cryptocurrencies. Exodus operates a decentralized exchange that connects buyers and sellers to transact directly across the cryptocurrency networks. There are pros and cons to both approaches.

Keep reading to learn more about Exodus vs. Coinbase, ease of use, fees, and which may make the most sense for your cryptocurrency goals.

Unlike traditional brokerage firms, cryptocurrency exchanges are not members of the Securities Investor Protection Corp. (SIPC). Therefore, unless user terms specify otherwise, investors with cryptocurrency assets commingled on a custodial cryptocurrency exchange could potentially lose their funds as unsecured creditors.

Investing in cryptocurrencies, Decentralized Finance (DeFi), and other Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) is highly risky and speculative, and the markets can be extremely volatile. Consult with a qualified professional before making any financial decisions. This article is not a recommendation by The Balance or the writer to invest in cryptocurrencies nor can the accuracy or timeliness of the information be guaranteed.

Exodus


Pros
  • Decentralized wallet and exchange

  • High levels of privacy and control

  • Hardware wallet support

  • Apps for staking and rewards

Cons
  • Potentially higher network fees

  • Costs built into spread pricing

  • Possibly challenging for some less tech-savvy users

Coinbase


Coinbase

Coinbase

Pros
  • Easy to buy and sell crypto

  • No download required for web version

  • Large company

Cons
  • Purchase fees calculated at transaction time

  • Less privacy than distributed networks

  • No direct support for hardware wallets

Exodus vs. Coinbase: At a Glance

  Exodus Coinbase 
Type of Wallet  Hot (software) that supports working with cold (hardware) wallets Hot (software)
Currencies  245+ 225+
Purchase Cost  Variable spread pricing 
and network fees
Calculated at transaction time
Incorporated Exchange  Yes  Yes 
Apps Available  Desktop: Windows, Mac, Linux Mobile: Android, iOS 
Web3
Desktop: None Mobile: Android, iOS

Exodus vs. Coinbase: Ease of Use

Coinbase makes the process of building a cryptocurrency portfolio very easy. You can fund a purchase with a card or linked bank account, among other options, for near-instant access to the cryptocurrency marketplace. You can use Coinbase through the Coinbase website or mobile app after a quick signup and verification process.

Exodus takes a little more work and knowledge to start. For desktop users, that includes downloading a desktop application and creating your software wallets. It’s fairly intuitive for anyone tech-savvy but may be tougher for those less comfortable with computers and the web in general.

Once you’re up and running, Coinbase is still the easier exchange to use thanks to a very simple buying and selling process integrated into its website and mobile app. It also makes funding your account much easier for new investors. Exodus requires a little more knowledge about how crypto markets work to manage your holdings and avoid high network fees.

Exodus vs. Coinbase: Security

Both Coinbase and Exodus are very secure. However, both work very differently regarding security processes and what’s done to keep your crypto assets safe.

At Coinbase, your assets are stored in a web-connected software wallet that’s created on your behalf. While these are generally considered safe as long as you maintain good password and digital security habits, there’s always a slight chance of getting hacked and losing your assets.

With Exodus, you have a software wallet by default but can easily plug in a supported Trezor hardware wallet and take your holdings offline for added security. When your crypto is in cold storage with a device like Trezor, your holdings are effectively unhackable. However, if you lose your password and recovery details, you could lose access to your crypto. For tech-savvy users who are extremely concerned with security, Exodus has the stronger offering.

Exodus vs. Coinbase: Features

Exodus and Coinbase are both feature-filled exchanges. Here’s a look at several top features:

Exodus Features

  • Desktop crypto portfolio management: Exodus is a desktop-first experience. If you work or game on a desktop or laptop computer, the Exodus app for desktop quickly gives you access to manage your crypto with a beautiful user interface.
  • Distributed exchange: Unlike Coinbase and competitors that run their own centralized crypto exchange, Exodus uses a distributed exchange that connects you directly with peers for added privacy and control over transactions. Exodus doesn’t charge any transaction or trading fees. However, there is a spread built in to the pricing of the crypto currencies and this is split between third party exchange providers and Exodus. Additionally, you'll pay network fees to the miners as you would when sending an receiving crypto in any context.
  • Support for a huge list of cryptocurrencies: Trade more than 245 cryptocurrencies, including currencies that may be limited at centralized exchanges.
  • Integrated cryptocurrency exchange: Exodus includes a built-in cryptocurrency exchange where you can convert and trade between digital coins.
  • Rewards and staking: The Compound Finance and Rewards apps within Exodus give you access to staking, which is interest on your crypto holdings. Compound Finance pays interest on DAI holdings while Rewards covers several coins, including Algorand, Cardano, Cosmos, and Tezos.
  • Hardware wallet integration: Through a partnership with the popular Trezor hardware wallet, you can plugin and use your Trezor One or Trezor Model T directly with Exodus. For security-minded crypto enthusiasts, this is a huge benefit for additional security.

New and Notable

Exodus now offers FTX integration, Exodus Bitcoin Lightning, and NFT integration.

Coinbase Features

  • Simple crypto buying and selling: Coinbase is among the easiest places to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. You can buy directly using a bank account, debit card, or even PayPal and get instant purchasing power, though you may not be able to withdraw right away. Additional fees may apply depending on how you fund your account or purchase.
  • Coinbase Pro: This is Coinbase's platform for more advanced users. It offers charting abilities and other features for traders.
  • Free crypto and crypto rewards: Coinbase Earn gives you opportunities to earn free cryptocurrencies. You can also earn staking rewards for a list of coins, including USD Coin, DAI, Tezos, Algorand, Cosmos, and Ethereum.

Exodus vs. Coinbase: Currencies

Both companies support a similar number of cryptocurrencies with Exodus having slightly more. They support over 245 whereas Coinbase supports over 225. Coinbase frequently adds new coins.

Exodus has a slightly longer list of supported currencies, but you may be wary of some of them. Ripple (XRP) has been in legal trouble. You can still send and receive it with Exodus, but Coinbase has suspended trading of it.

Exodus vs. Coinbase: Price

Coinbaes and Exodus use different pricing models that make it hard to give them a direct head-to-head comparison. 

Coinbase charges maker-taker fees as high as 0.60% for exchange trading. For crypto purchases, sales, and other transactions they don't disclose the fees. For these transactions it says that the fees will be calculated and displayed at the time of the transaction.

Exodus only charges spreads, but those vary depending on the currency and other market factors. High-volume currencies like Bitcoin or Ethereum will cost you less to trade than lower-volume currencies. You know your exact exchange rate when converting, but you won’t necessarily see the spread you’re paying behind the scenes.

Exodus vs. Coinbase: Mobile App

Both Coinbase and Exodus offer mobile apps. Being web-based, Coinbase makes it easier to buy and transact. Its mobile app is very similar to the website experience but optimized to fit in the palm of your hand on your Android or iOS device. Coinbase also offers a separate mobile wallet app that acts as a standalone software wallet.

The Exodus app for iOS and Android is also similar to its desktop version. However, that means it can do a lot more, making it better for those who have experience with crypto and feel confident with smartphone apps in general already. It includes a desktop sync feature, support for the Trezor wallet, and other privacy-focused features.

Final Verdict

Coinbase is a stronger choice for those who are newer to cryptocurrency or don’t feel as comfortable navigating technology. It’s as easy to use as any stockbroker, if not easier, and gives you access to buy cryptocurrency from your preferred bank account, debit card, or PayPal account almost instantly.

Exodus doesn’t have a way to fund your account from a U.S. bank account. You’ll need existing crypto to fund your account and get started. The other option is to buy crypto in third party apps that connect to Exodus, but they don't offer a direct service for doing this themselves. From there, it’s still a bit more complex than the experience at Coinbase. But serious crypto fans will enjoy the additional features and beautiful views to display your crypto portfolio.

If you are going to pick one and know little about crypto, Coinbase is the better choice. Exodus provides a more powerful and secure alternative for those with a little more knowledge of the crypto landscape.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Exodus and Coinbase?

Exodus and Coinbase are cryptocurrency exchange and wallet providers. They allow you to buy, sell, convert, and store various cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and dozens more.

How Do Exodus and Coinbase Work?

Exodus and Coinbase are digital platforms that enable you to run your own cryptocurrency account, similar to an investment brokerage account for managing your stock portfolio. Coinbase supports connections to bank accounts in the United States while Exodus must be funded through existing cryptocurrency.

Is the Exodus Wallet Safer Than Coinbase?

Coinbase and Exodus are both very safe. Some crypto users would say that Exodus is safer, as it gives you the ability to disconnect your cryptocurrency from the web and potential cybercriminals. Coinbase is always online, which means hackers may be able to access poorly secured accounts. With strong passwords and tools like two-factor authentication, however, most people shouldn’t be too concerned with security at Coinbase.

Who Should Use Exodus vs. Coinbase?

Coinbase is better for the typical investor and new cryptocurrency user. If you want a simple, quick, and straightforward crypto experience, Coinbase delivers. For those who want more intricate control and have a deeper understanding of cryptocurrencies and computers in general, Exodus could be a better choice.

Methodology

To evaluate Exodus and Coinbase, we reviewed the features, costs, security, ease of use, supported cryptocurrencies, support, and other important factors. Ultimately, based on these and other examined factors, Exodus and Coinbase may suit different types of users.

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