How to Buy IOTA – A Beginner’s Guide
Last updated: 2/20/19
IOTA is a cryptocurrency focused on supplying a currency for the machine economy (i.e. machines that pay each other for services). In the following post I’ll give you a brief overview of the IOTA technology, its currency and also explain where to buy it online.
Here’s how to buy IOTA:
- Get an IOTA wallet (Ledger, Trinity)
- Locate your IOTA address
- Find an IOTA exchange (Binance, eToro)
- Buy IOTA
- Withdraw your coins to your wallet
That’s it! If you want a more detailed explanation about what IOTA is and how to buy it keep on reading. Here’s what I’ll cover:
- What is IOTA
- How to buy IOTA
IOTA is a cryptocurrency that puts an emphasis on machine to machine payments. As such, it aims to be scalable, secure and lightweight to allow any type of IoT (Internet of Things) device to use it.
IOTA transactions are fast and feeless, thanks to a new model used by IOTA called “The Tangle”. IOTA uses node to node verification only, unlike Bitcoin’s traditional blockchain, where miners invest energy to solve math problems and add new blocks of transactions.
Each node that wants to send a transaction is required to validate two unconfirmed transactions as payment. The more nodes on the system, the faster transaction verification will occur.
Finally, IOTA uses quantum proof algorithms, making it secure against hacks from even the most powerful computers conceivable.
IOTA’s currency is measured in mega IOTAs (or MIOTA for short). Note that whenever you see IOTA’s price on an exchange or price ticker it will usually refer to MIOTA, even if the “M” isn’t present. The total number of IOTAs in existence is 2,779,530,283,277,761, all of them were created in the genesis block and sold to investors in the IOTA ICO.
Today there isn’t a wide selection of wallets that support IOTA, so many people are storing it on exchanges. Many newbies, who don’t have a solid understanding of the technical details, are opting to do this. Nevertheless, it doesn’t mean that storing IOTA on an exchange is a good idea.
The best practice is to use a hardware or software wallet and not risk your IOTA getting lost or stolen.
Ledger – The Ledger Nano X and Ledger Nano S are both hardware devices that allow you to store IOTA safely and securely offline. The Nano X also supports the use of a mobile app to send and receive funds. Both devices can hold a wide range of additional cryptocurrencies as well, so this might be a good choice if you’re looking to store additional other coins than IOTA. Here’s my complete review of the Ledger Nano X.
Trinity – A dedicated IOTA only wallet, available for both desktop (Mac, Linux, Windows) and mobile (iOS, Android). This wallet is currently in public Beta meaning it’s probably not free from bugs but seems to be well supported and documented.
IOTA GUI client – This is a desktop wallet that is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. Setting up this wallet requires some work; When setting it up, choose “light node” and a host. Then generate an 81-character seed that contains only uppercase letters and the number 9. Keep this seed in a safe spot.
Here are directions and comments from some users on Reddit who are discussing how hard this wallet is to set up.
IOTA paper wallet – Requires creating a seed comprised out of 81 characters with uppercase letters and the number 9 (just like the desktop wallet). After generating the paper wallet, you can print it out and send IOTA to it. This paper wallet should be stored in a safe place for future use.
Step 2: Find an IOTA exchange
eToro – If you’re only looking to invest in IOTA for speculation purposes (i.e. you don’t need access to the actual IOTA coins) than eToro is probably the easiest way to go. eToro is a trading platform with a focus on cryptocurrencies. It allows you to easily buy and sell IOTA for fiat (dollars, euros, etc.) with a variety of payment options.
If you decide to use eToro you can skip steps 1 and 3 – you won’t be needing an IOTA wallet since you can’t send your coins outside of eToros. You can read my complete eToro review here.
Important – cryptocurrencies can widely fluctuate in prices and are not appropriate for all investors. Trading cryptocurrencies is not supervised by any EU regulatory framework. So keep in mind that your capital is at risk.
Binance – If you do require to access you coins, or don’t like the eToro solution for any other reason, you can always purchase IOTA on Binance. Strictly a cryptocurrency exchange, Binance offers an IOTA/BTC trading pair. Binance also allows users to buy crypto with a credit card, making them a very attractive solution. You can read my complete Binance review here.
Once you bought your IOTA coins it’s time to move them from the exchange into the wallet you’ve chosen in step 2. This will make sure that the coins are under your control only. Make sure to locate your IOTA address inside the chosen IOTA wallet in order to request a withdrawal from the exchange. While theoretically IOTA confirmations should take 2 milliseconds, in reality they usually take a few minutes.
With its grand vision, IOTA seeks to revolutionize the Internet of Things by bringing microtransactions together with zero fees across all connected devices. Given its frictionless method of exchanging value, IOTA could very well have a bright future ahead of it.
Anyone who wants to take advantage of early adopter status still can, as this project is still in its infancy. The only real drawback to purchasing and storing IOTA is the lack of sufficient wallets to support the coin. In addition, the web mobile wallets are in beta, making the IOTA paper wallet or the Ledger Nano wallets the best and easiest solution for long-term holders.
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