Here are the Winners for 2018’s Best Bitcoin Hardware Wallet

Last updated on November 24th, 2017 at 08:14 am

For those of you who still haven’t watched out Bitcoin Whiteboard Tuesday’s episode on Bitcoin wallets I suggest you do so before reading any further. For those of you who have, by now you probably know that the most secure way you can store your Bitcoins is through the use of hardware wallets.

Hardware wallets use 2FA by making sure that in order to access a wallet you prove your identity by something you have (the physical wallet) and something you know (the PIN code for the wallet). If you’re serious about Bitcoin, you need to get a hardware wallet, I personally have 3 different ones.

Today I wanted to take the opportunity to list who I think are the best Bitcoin hardware wallets on the market for 2017. Keep in mind that the top 3 Bitcoin hardware wallets I will present are all great products. The difference between 1st, 2nd and 3rd place is somewhat minor as you’ll see soon enough.

Bitcoin hardware wallet sizes

#1 – Ledger Nano S Bitcoin hardware wallet

I’ve reviewed the Ledger Nano S not long ago and was absolutely impressed. The company, that used to be the second runner up in the Bitcoin hardware wallet race seemed to have matched it’s main opponent TREZOR.

The Nano S has a sleek design, intuitive user interface, a wide support of altcoins (Ethereum, Litecoin, Dogecoin, Zcash, Dash, Stratis) and most importantly an attractive price tag. At the moment the Nano S sells for €58 which is around $63 making it the most affordable hardware wallet from the top 3 as well.

ledger nano s review

The company (LedgerWallet) has been around long enough to gain a respectful reputation and in all honesty I couldn’t find anything bad to say about their product. Even though I tested this product personally,  at the moment I’m still actually using a TREZOR. The main reason for this is because when I started out with Bitcoin the Ledger Nano S wasn’t around yet :)

Click here to learn more about the Ledger Nano S

#2 – TREZOR Bitcoin hardware wallet

My personal hardware wallet is a TREZOR. This is the oldest hardware wallet on the market and probably the most reputable one as well. TREZOR has a nice design, a very easy to understand user interface, and it supports Zcash, Dash and Ethereum aside from Bitcoin (ETH is supported through an external wallet called MyEtherWallet).

trezor pin code device

The price on the TREZOR is a bit higher and is currently $99. I can’t say it justifies a higher price than the Nano S and therefor it’s in 2nd place in my opinion. However, as I’ve mentioned before, this is a great wallet and you can also read my full review of it here.

Finally,  the main advantage TREZOR has over its competitors is the company reputation. One of the company’s founders is Marek “Slush” Palatinus, who also created the first mining pool for Bitcoin (founded in 2010).

Click here to learn more about TREZOR

#3 – KeepKey Bitcoin hardware wallet

Coming in 3rd place we have Keepkey, a Bitcoin hardware wallet with a beautiful though somewhat large design. Keepkey has similar features to TREZOR and the Ledger Nano S, however there are a few reasons that make it a bit less attractive in my opinion.

KeepKey

First, the wallet is too big for carrying in your pocket conveniently.  The size of the Keepkey wallet is almost twice of the TREZOR or Ledger Nano S (as can be seen in the image above). Second, the company hasn’t built enough reputation in the community.

Additional things that make me hesitate regarding buying the product are:

On the bright side, Keepkey supports a wide variety of altcoins including Bitcoin, Litecoin, Dogecoin, Namecoin, Testnet, Ethereum, and Dash. Keepkey currently sales for $99 similar to TREZOR.

Click here to learn more about Keepkey

Additional Bitcoin hardware wallets on the market

Throughout the last 2 years I’ve also explored some additional Bitcoin hardware wallets that didn’t make the top 3 list so I’d like to mention them here.

CoolWallet is a credit card looking hardware wallet that you can carry around in your pocket. My review of Coolwallet was positive, however the wallet hasn’t gained enough marketshare in order for me to consider it a stable product.

BitLox is another hardware wallet I reviewed, however it was in early stages and I couldn’t get it to work properly. I haven’t taken another look at the product since then (this was back in the beginning of 2016) and the product may have become more user friendly.

Conclusion – If you’re serious about crypto, get a hardware wallet

It doesn’t get any simpler than this headline. Yes, hardware wallets cost money and no one like spending money on things they can get for free. But the amount of security you get by using a hardware wallet is much more valuable than the $50-$100 you’ll pay for purchasing the actual device.

Don’t say “it won’t happen to me” because once cryptocurrency becomes mainstream (and it seems like we’re getting there pretty fast) there will be many more cases of hacking or theft. Make sure you’re prepared…

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46 Comments on "Here are the Winners for 2018’s Best Bitcoin Hardware Wallet"

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Abdullah
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Abdullah

Hi! Which crytocurrency and which software is best for mining for an average computer.

Steven Hay
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Steven Hay

Hey Abdullah,

Well, the best crypto to mine depends on various factors. The first step is to determine if you have a graphics card (GPU) which can mine effectively. If not, you will have to stick to CPU mining. The mining software will depend entirely on which coin you choose to mine.

For a list of the most profitable (investigate the algorithms listed under the coin icon to see if they are CPU / GPU or ASIC-mineable – avoid all coins which are ASIC-minable) coins to mine, see this site:

https://www.coinwarz.com/cryptocurrency

ERod
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ERod

Having never bought any crypto, your site is helpful to get started. I know this post is 2 months old, but since Google has chosen to stop supporting Chrome Apps this year (2018), should I still invest in a Ledger NanoS? What is the downstream impact to those using it? Better alternatives given this news? Thanks in advance.

Steven Hay
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Steven Hay

Hey Erod,

I try to avoid Google as far as possible – and chose a Trezor for this reason – so this is all news to me…

I investigated and Ledger’s Chief Technical Officer, btchip, responded to enquiries into this issue by saying that Ledger is working on a new version of their app suite, which will be fully independent of Chrome. Apparently this will be released in the first quarter of 2018. In the meantime, it’s possible to use their apps via https://nwjs.io/

I may well get a Nano S now that a non-Google solution is on the horizon!

fari
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fari

how many wallets a person can have? and does every digital currency has a different wallet?

Steven Hay
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Steven Hay
Hi Fari, You can have as many wallets as you like. There are probably 20 or more wallets for Bitcoin and you can run all of them if you like… It just wouldn’t make sense to do so. Instead you should choose one or two wallets – say a wallet for your phone and one for your computer. A hardware wallet is a good extra device to have, as it will improve the security of your Bitcoin storage hugely. Just about every digital currency has its own wallet, yes. I would suggest only downloading wallets from the official site of… Read more »
cdog
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cdog

For me the clincher was that the Nano looks just like a USB key of old. I see it as a stealth hardware wallet, so for me it wins.

Utomo
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Utomo

The title is misleading. we still on 2017.
and You did not review Trezor T and Ledger Blue which is designed for 2018
it is better products

Russ
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Russ

If you start with a wallet on your computer, can you eventually move to a hardware wallet with no problems?

Steven Hay
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Steven Hay

Hey Russ,

Sure, no problem. You’d just initialise your hardware wallet, create your seed and PIN backup and then generate some Bitcoin addresses. Then you’d send your coins from your existing wallet to the address(es) generated by your hardware wallet.

ophunter
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ophunter

will minergate steal my hashes and is it worth it

Steven Hay
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Steven Hay

Hey ophunter,

Check out our full article on MinerGate:

MinerGate Review: Is It a Legit Mining Operation?

I’d say that it might make a good, simplified intro to mining, but if you get serious about mining then you’d make better money by using a regular pool and learning all the trickier aspects.

Antoine
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Antoine
Hi, Love the site. It was highly recommended. My question is, I have a Ledger Blue, and I’m trying to possibly buy alt-coins in the future. Some of them aren’t supported by this product (for example: Cardano, IOTA, Monero, NEM). What do you do when your trying to HODL? We are informed not to keep them on a computer, website, phone…and especially not to keep them on an exchange like Binance, Bittrex, Poloniex or something. Any suggestions? Am I supposed to download multiple wallets to expand a portfolio? Why can’t there be just one wallet to rule them all? LOL.… Read more »
Steven Hay
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Steven Hay
Hey Antoine, Yes, it takes a while for hardware wallet developers to integrate new coins. One thing you can do is keep asking them! I do believe that Trezor is working on Monero integration… Provided an altcoin stays in the top 20 or so for long enough, it’s likely to get integrated eventually. Keeping coins on your personal computer is probably the best option. Just take all reasonable steps to ensure that your system is secure. If you start accumulating a lot of a particular coin, then it might be time to look at cold storage solutions for it. Paper… Read more »
Christina
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Christina

Hello, This is all very useful information, and you don’t make people feel dumb for asking what you might think are elementary questions! Thank you!

So, here’s my elementary questions: I purchased litecoin…on coinbase…before coming across your coinbase review. What hardware wallet would you recommend for litecoin, and how in the world do I create a paper wallet? I am totally new to this–one week of scouring the internet for information while working and getting ready for the holidays.

Many thanks in advance.
Christina

Steven Hay
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Steven Hay

Hi Christina,

Glad you find it helpful!

I believe you asked elsewhere about a wallet solution for Ripple. I recommended the Ledger Nano S, as this supports both Litecoin and Ripple. The Trezor is also very good but doesn’t currently support Ripple.

Please see our complete guide to creating a Bitcoin paper wallet here:

How to Create a 99.9% Secure Bitcoin Paper Wallet

You will need to download a different site to perform this same process for Litecoin. I believe that https://liteaddress.org/ is ok to use for this purpose but you should probably do some research to ensure that it’s legit.

shane
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shane

How many coins do these wallets hold. I’ve searched the internet high and low and can’t find ANYTHING of use.

Steven Hay
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Steven Hay

Hi Shane,

There’s no upper limit on what (hardware) wallets can hold. The Bitcoin network is scheduled to produce a maximum of 21 million coins however.

tycoon
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tycoon

Great article! I have a question tough. I want to buy ledger from Amazon. Can I trust every seller with high rating? Because I checked the retailer and it’s not shown on the “official” list in the ledger website.
I’m not sure how this things work.

Steven Hay
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Member
Steven Hay

Hey tycoon,

Well, I would say that it’s safer to buy from Ledger directly. If a sophisticated hacker fiddled with hardware wallets with the goal of stealing bitcoins once people loaded them onto the wallets, it would definitely be easier for the hacker to distribute them over Amazon than intercept the wallets en route from the manufacturer. As the price difference likely isn’t that significant, I’d go for the extra peace of mind by ordering from Ledger.