Binance is one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world. Originally, the platform was headquartered in China, but it opted to move its head office to the island of Malta. This was due to a string of punitive conditions imposed on the platform by the Japanese government. Combine this with a warning issued in early 2018 by the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) and it’s easy to see why Binance opted to depart for Malta, giving one of the world’s fastest-growing crypto exchanges a platform to shine.
Binance was founded by Changpeng Zhao, the former co-founder and CTO of OKcoin, another cryptocurrency exchange located in Beijing. Binance was co-founded by Yi He, Zhao’s fellow partner at OKcoin, who agreed to join Zhao at Binance. The two have a history of working together in cryptocurrency and blockchain-based firms, which clearly boded well for their venture with Binance. The platform opened its doors in mid-2017 and is already worth up to $2 billion today. Both Zhao and He have a close relationship with the founders of the NEO cryptocurrency. Consequently, transaction fees have been scrapped for all deals involving NEO (NEO) and NEO-GAS coins on Binance.
Binance’s speed is one of the main reasons why cryptocurrency traders have flocked here. The platform is capable of executing up to 1.4 million transactions per second and its user base is now more than four million strong – and rising daily. So far, no other decentralised crypto exchange has handled such huge transaction volumes with speed and the added layer of security that Binance provides.
What makes Binance different from other exchanges is that it offers its own token, Binance Coin, which can be purchased and used to trade for other digital assets such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. Investors that use Binance Coin receive discounts on trading fees. Binance currently provides 50% concessions for users in their first year, 25% concessions in their second year and 12.5% concessions in their third year of trading. Many investors use these rebates to put towards more Binance Coin or other emerging altcoins.
Binance supports almost 400 cryptocurrencies, with Bitcoin and Ethereum boasting the largest number of crypto-crypto trading pairs.
Some of the most popular coins you can trade on Binance are:
At first, enabling two-factor authentication (2FA) was only possible for China-based users of Binance, but the platform has now opened this option to international users too. International users can enable SMS verification using a one-time password (OTP) or use Google Authenticator to sign in and withdraw funds from their account.
Binance is one of the most secure cryptocurrency exchanges available. However, at the beginning of 2018, Binance experienced a phishing and API attack, allowing cyber-criminals to exchange users’ coins for Viacoin without their consent. The Binance security team reacted fast to the attack, disabling all withdrawals and freezing the accounts affected. All malicious parties were eventually identified, and the stolen coins were rightfully returned to the affected users. Some users have also complained about losing crypto coins from accounts which weren’t secured by 2FA, reinforcing the need to enable 2FA on all your accounts with cryptocurrency exchanges.
In terms of fees and limits, Binance currently charges users 0.1% on each trade completed. Individuals that opt to pay for their new cryptocurrency through the Binance token can receive a 50% discount on this trading fee, with 0.05% being some of the smallest transaction fees offered by a cryptocurrency exchange at present. Withdrawal fees still vary depending on the value of the crypto you wish to withdraw. Binance charges BTC 0.0005 for all Bitcoin withdrawals, with a minimum withdrawal of BTC 0.002 permitted.
In terms of transfer limits, Binance users are not restricted in terms of how many crypto coins they wish to deposit. However, those with ‘Basic’ accounts are limited as to how much they can withdraw at once form their Binance account. Those prepared to seek ID verification with the Binance team will become a ‘Level Two’ user, benefitting from greater freedom. ‘Level One’ users are allowed to withdraw a maximum of BTC 2 worth of cryptocurrency daily. In contrast, Level Two users can withdraw a maximum of BTC 100 a day.
As fiat currencies are not accepted on the Binance exchange – given that it is a crypto-crypto trading platform – the way to pay for other cryptocurrencies is through depositing other digital assets from your cryptocurrency wallet. Subsequently, those new to cryptocurrency trading will have to buy their preferred cryptocurrency via another platform that accepts fiat currency payments before setting up a Binance account to trade crypto-to-crypto.
Setting up a new account with Binance is very simple, especially for new users that wish to create a ‘Basic’ account. ‘Advanced’ Binance accounts require government-issued ID, which may take some time to verify. However, a Basic account is ready to use almost instantly.
It is possible to transfer cryptocurrency from your wallet to start trading instantly on Binance. It is currently not possible to use Binance to buy cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin using fiat currencies. Instead, you can convert other cryptocurrencies that you own into Bitcoin, Ethereum and other leading altcoins. New altcoins appear all the time on Binance due to the raft of ICOs that occur each month.
If you wish to withdraw or deposit funds, simply log in to your Binance account and hover over the ‘Funds’ tab at the top of the page. On the drop-down menu you’ll see a ‘Deposits Withdrawals’ button – click it. Once the page loads, click the Withdrawal button on the right-hand side of the page and fill in the withdrawal address, tag and amount and hit ‘Submit’. Confirm your withdrawal request to process the transaction.
Binance offers two separate sections of its website for guidance in using the platform. The Binance FAQs section is a huge divided into sub-sections, making it easy for users to find what they are looking for. Meanwhile, the second section allows users to submit new questions for resolving by the Binance customer support team. Binance does not offer telephone support, but it does offer advice in a multitude of languages, catering for its now worldwide audience.
√ Lightning fast transactions
√ Minimal information required to set up a Basic account
√ Verification for Advanced accounts is quicker on Binance than most other exchanges
√ 2FA available worldwide
√ Multi-language support inc. English, Chinese, Japanese and Korean
√ Some of the lowest trading fees in the world
√ Transaction fees relative to the value of the cryptocurrency you wish to buy or sell
√ API private key can be generated to access Binance via third-party applications
√ Doubles up as a crypto wallet to store your digital assets after its acquisition of Trust Wallet
X No fiat/crypto pairings available at the time of writing
X Binance iOS app not listed in the Apple Store, can be downloaded from the Binance website
X Advanced view of the Binance exchange can be hard to understand for novice traders.
X Android app may well be available to download in the Play Store, but users have reported difficulty in usage
X Binance stores some personal data, such as IP addresses
X Impossible to buy in bulk through Binance – if you wish to drop more than $100,000, Binance is not for you
In terms of supported and compatible cryptocurrency wallets, Binance acquired Trust Wallet earlier this year. Trust Wallet has since become an on-chain mobile wallet for all Binance services, with no need for a cold storage crypto wallet such as the Trezor wallet and other exciting integration possibilities afoot in the months to come too.
Is Binance good enough as a cryptocurrency exchange? It is clearly an impressive one-stop-shop to buy and sell cryptocurrencies, but you have to already own some digital assets beforehand. As one of the world’s fastest-growing digital currency exchanges, it is good to hear that the platform plans to offer fiat-to-crypto trading to its customers in the near future. It is expected to allow euro-to-crypto trading first by the end of 2018 before adding more fiat currency options in 2019, whilst seeking authorisation from the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) too. This would help Binance become a five-star exchange in our eyes.
It is pleasing to see that Binance has the vast majority of altcoins available to trade on its platform, giving investors a chance to get involved in early-stage digital assets from the ground up.
Visit our regularly updated news section for the latest info on Binance and many other leading cryptocurrency exchanges.
BNB is the acronym for Binance Coin, the cryptocurrency token issued by Binance. Binance Coin operates on the Ethereum blockchain with ERC-20 standard, with a strict ceiling of 200 million BNB tokens allowed in circulation. BNB can be used to trade for other cryptocurrencies on the Binance platform with discount trading fees.
Bounty programs and contests are regularly offered to Binance users. Competitions such as API coding tests and video-making contests are designed to encourage interaction within the community. The winner of bounty programs and contests are usually rewarded with BNB tokens, as well as other cryptocurrencies. When new crypto coins are added to the Binance exchange, users can earn bounties based on the rank of their trading positions relative to the new token. Affiliate schemes are also active, rewarding Binance users with BNB tokens by referring new users to the platform.
If you place an order for a cryptocurrency that completes immediately – before being entered on the order book – this equates to a “taker” trade. If you place an order for a cryptocurrency that goes partially or fully on the order book, these are known as “maker” trades. They are orders that “make” the market on the Binance platform.
Because cryptocurrencies are anonymous, Binance will not know the controller of the address you sent your coins to incorrectly and will have no means of recovering them on your behalf. If you know the owner of the address, Binance recommends that users contact the owner of the target address to negotiate the safe return of your coins back to your account.