What are the differences between Gemini and Coinbase? Gemini and Coinbase are two of the most popular crypto exchanges based in the United States that offer some unique features and benefits to the users to cater to all their needs, but differently.
When you want to make a choice between these two crypto exchanges, you should compare them side by side based on different aspects and features such as:
- Their fee structure
- Ease of use
- The security features
- The unique aspects
- The currencies supported and more.
Also, you should look into the types of trades allowed on each of these two platforms, the trading pairs, and volume and weigh their respective trading costs against the wider crypto market.
Both the platforms, Coinbase and Gemini, are the most established and widely used in the world. Recently, JP Morgan has announced to provide banking services to both of them that added to their credibility. This indicates the adoption and mainstream acceptance of cryptocurrencies.
However, that does not mean there is no need to know more about these two crypto platforms. Here in this article you will find a few basic differences between them in detail as well as a few smaller ones for your better knowledge.
13 Differences Between Gemini and Coinbase
While you are buying or selling crypto assets, it is important to make sure that you are using a legit crypto exchange platform.
There are too many users who were either duped by hacks or exit scams.
Therefore, it is important to know the differences between the two exchanges in terms of all possible aspects before choosing one. Here they are.
The Gemini platform was created and launched by the famous Winklevoss twins, Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss. They invested heavily in Bitcoin after a settlement worth $60 million with Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook founder and in 2015 the platform finally started their own crypto exchange.
Based in the US, this platform follows a stringent Know Your Customer or KYC protocol along with fulfilling all the necessary requirements to comply with the strict Anti-Money Laundering laws laid down by the US government.
On the other hand, the Coinbase exchange was launched in 2012 by two well-known personalities in the crypto world namely, Brian Armstrong and Fred Ehrsam.
Over time, this platform has become one of the most popular and widely used centralized exchanges in the United States. The users prefer this platform because it supports some of the major and top-performing crypto coins on the market.
The design of the website along with the intuitive and easy-to-use app provides the ability to its users to buy crypto assets with a credit card. These features of this crypto platform have made it much easier for the new crypto investors than ever to get started.
2. Best for
Gemini crypto exchange is known to be one of the most secure platforms that you will find in the market which is suitable for those investors who want to buy and hold crypto coins.
This platform also comes with all those features that the institutional investors and experienced traders typically look for in a crypto exchange to ensure total security above everything else and use more advanced tools.
This, however, does not mean that the beginners cannot use this platform at all, thanks to its simple and easy-to-use web and mobile app.
On the other hand, Coinbase is a crypto platform that is best suited for first-time crypto investors which offers some of the best user education materials as well as a simple interface.
It is also best suited for the crypto traders who are looking to trade with some major pairs but over a simple platform.
Gemini performs rigorous auditing to ensure safety and complete protection of funds of the users and prevent loss of money and hacking of accounts as far as possible.
For that matter, the platform also uses top-class cold storage to hold the digital assets of the users offering a complete peace of mind. All its features make Gemini one of the most reliable exchanges and a one-stop-shop for buying, selling, and storing crypto coins.
The Coinbase platform, on the other hand, allows easy onboard features and a very intuitive and easy to use interface. The users of this platform will find buying and selling their digital assets most conveniently and easily on it, even those who are doing it for the first time.
Apart from that, the crypto bonuses offered by this exchange make it a great place for the newcomers to get started.
4. Coin Support
Gemini supports a wide range of crypto coins for trading. The list includes Bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, Zcash, Filecoin, Dogecoin, and Tezos.
And, as for their support for ERC-20 tokens, the list includes 0x 1INCH, Aave, Alchemix, Amp, Ankr Network, Axie Infinity, Bancor Network, BarnBridge, Basic Attention Token, Balancer, Chainlink, Compound, Cryptex, Curve, Dai, Decentraland, Enjin, Fantom, The Graph, Gemini Dollar, Injective Protocol, Kyber Network, Livepeer, Loopring, Maker, Mirror Protocol, Moss Carbon Credit, Orchid, Pax Gold, Polygon, Ren, The Sandbox, Skale, Smooth Love Potion, Somnium Space, Storj, SushiSwap, Synthetix, Terra, TerraUSD, Uma, Uniswap, and Yearn Finance, all arranged in alphabetical order.
As for Coinbase, the different types of coins supported by the platform include Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Dogecoin, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, Litecoin, Stellar Lumens, Ripple, and all ERC 20 tokens including DAI and USD Coin.
5. Customer Support
If you consider the customer service and support, this is one of the most significant aspects that these two crypto platforms differ.
Typically, the users of Coinbase can avail of this facility both through email and live chat support through social channels. However, the platform does not offer live phone support.
On the other hand, Gemini provides support to its customers 24/7 over the phone. Additionally, it also provides live chat support to the users which gives them peace of mind since they can talk to a human directly as and when they have any particular issue and want to get it resolved quickly.
6. Ease of Use
Gemini is quite an easy to use platform and comes with a clean and crisp interface. The users can buy, sell and trade crypto coins easily on this platform with a simple price list which provides them with the best user experience possible.
The signup process of this platform is also quite easy and fast. In order to create a free account with them all you have to do is provide your email address and a password.
This address will be verified and once that is done you will need to secure your account with a 2FA or Two-Factor Authentication.
You will also need to link your debit card or bank account with it before you can start buying crypto coins of your choice from there right away.
Though the signup process of Coinbase is pretty similar wherein you have to provide your email address, a password and connect your bank account but you will need to verify your identity by using any photo ID issued by the government.
You will also have to upload the picture of that ID to the website or app. Your account will be verified and ID scrutinized after which you can buy crypto coins right on the app.
And, yes, apart from linking your bank account with the account you can also connect your credit card to start purchasing crypto assets immediately.
7. Security Features
Some of the security features incorporated in the Gemini platform are as under:
- Hot Wallet insurance on any digital assets held in their wallet. This insurance will reimburse users in the event of loss of funds due to hacking, security breaches, employee theft, and a fraudulent transfer
- It also offers whitelisting of approved addresses which restricts access to specific addresses that may withdraw your fund based on the 7-day hold for approval to ensure that these addresses are vetted before being approved
- The platform also offers Two-Factor Authentication via the Authy app or SMS for safer login to the accounts and
- Add to that, the user role management restricts access to your account and trading permissions for particular users.
Device management is another feature that reviews all those devices that have accessed your account and restricts those that you do not want to or recognize.
It even allows you to end current sessions from any of such unrecognized devices that may be logged in currently to your account.
On the other hand, the security features of Coinbase include:
- A built-in digital wallet to store the crypto assets of the users that is well protected by a password, an encrypted 12-word recovery phrase, and a biometric access control and
- The accounts also need a Two-Factor Authentication of the industry standard via the Google Authenticator app or SMS for logging into your account as well as for making individual trades, both.
Its unique storage feature is that it stores 98% of the total crypto balances in an offline cold storage and crypto vault that needs approval from several users while withdrawing funds.
The withdrawal requests are cancelled within 24 hours if all approvals are not received due to the time-locked feature of these vaults.
8. Unique Features
There are a few specific features that are unique for both Gemini and Coinbase platforms.
As for Gemini, some of its unique features are:
- The users here are allowed to earn interest on almost every crypto coin they offer. This Gemini Earn program offers an APY that is as high as 7.40% but the actual amount offered may vary according to the type of the particular crypto coin. This is unique because you do not have to stake or lock your crypto assets up, as you would need to do in other crypto exchanges, in order to earn interest and
- The Gemini Pay program available within the app is also unique. It allows the users to select a crypto to spend and retailers from more than 30,000 available participants to make retail purchases of crypto and pay for it in Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ether, Zash, or Gemini Dollar and
- The platform also offers institutional investor service to help the fund managers in creating crypto-based funds and act as a custodian for wealth managers and corporate clients as well to help them to build a more diversified crypto portfolio. You can also integrate third-party apps with Gemini by using the API keys that the platform offers access to.
On the other hand, the unique features of Coinbase include:
- Providing free education to the new crypto investors through watching short, bite-sized videos and those users who complete the crypto projects shown in these videos are offered a small amount of crypto coins free of cost as an additional benefit
- The platform displays a newsfeed that curates online articles based on cryptocurrencies so that the newcomers are well-versed with the latest news, current events and trends followed in the crypto space, the developments taking place and how it has helped the users and
- Finally, the Coinbase platform offers price alerts which help the users to create a watchlist of their favored crypto coins knowing timely alerts on the price movements.
All the relevant updates appear automatically in the app of the platform and trigger push notifications on the mobile phones of the users as well at the same time.
Some specific fees charged by these two crypto platforms are similar while a few others are different. As for the fees of Gemini it charges a flat fee of around 0.50% for each transaction as well as an additional charge depending on the type of account involved in the transaction.
For example, for US bank account transfers the fee is the same as Coinbase of 1.49% as well as for the wallet. However, the fees charged for purchases made by using a credit card or a debit card is 3.49%.
However, there are no fees charged by Gemini for ACH transfer, instant card withdrawal or wire transfer.
As for Coinbase, the fees charged for purchases made by using a credit card or a debit card is 3.99%, for instant card withdrawal it is a minimum of $0.55 and up to 1.5% of a transaction, for wire transfer it is $10 and $25 for outgoing, and free for ACH Transfer.
10. Buying Limits
As for the buying limits, Coinbase does not state it clearly because the limits depend on several factors. These include your location, the payment method used, and the time for which the users are registered at the platform.
As for Gemini, if you use your debit card to make payments on Gemini then the buying limit will be pretty low at $1,000. In comparison, the daily buying limit for ACH bank transfers are a good deal higher at $5,000 and $30,000 per month.
If you use wire transfer to deposit your funds on Gemini, there are no limits whether you are an individual or an institutional client.
11. Additional Features
There are some additional tools and features of both these platforms. As for Coinbase comes of these features include:
- Coinbase Debit Card that allows the users to spend crypto holdings in the real world which is supported by Visa and can be used in-store or online as well as in the ATMs
- Its own crypto token USDC that is offered in partnership with Circle and is pegged with USD at 1:1 ratio and operates as a stablecoin
- Its recurring buys feature that helps the experienced and interested crypto investors who have been investing for a long time to buy a digital currency automatically at the preset interval and
- Its top-class educational department that is useful for the newcomers in the crypto space and contains a large number of explainers and helpful guides to make it easy for them to understand the crypto space to the next level.
As for the core features of Gemini, the notable additional features include:
- Its Gemini Earn feature allows the users to earn a set amount of interest on the crypto holdings lying idle and the amount of interest earned varies on the basis of the type of crypto coin in question, with the highest APY being 7.40%
- Its Gemini Dollar token which, much like USDC of Coinbase, is pegged to the US dollar and is backed by tangible USD reserves that are safely stored in a bank account that is FDIC-insured and
- Its Gemini Pay features that allows the users to buy in-store products and services by using their mobile phones by simply selecting the crypto asset they want to use to pay for the transaction which is validated by the merchants by scanning the respective barcode.
All these features in addition to the basic tools and features of both these platforms help the crypto traders and investors a lot in their respective efforts.
When you consider the liquidity aspect of the two platforms, Gemini does not offer as high liquidity as Coinbase does, or Coinbase Pro to be more precise.
The trading volume on this platform seems to be literally and statistically unbeatable. In spite of offering limited trading variety, typically ETH/USD and BTC/USD makes almost half of the liquidity on Coinbase exchange.
In fact, on this platform, crypto-to-crypto trading pairs are much less in comparison to the fiat trading pairs offered by Coinbase.
As for Gemini, the trading pairs offered have much less liquidity. Gemini also ranks quite low in total trading volume as compared to all major crypto exchanges in the industry.
This may be due to the fact that the exchange is available only to the users in a few select countries. However, the company announced that it will allow the users to trade crypto coins against the Euro and also that it will incorporate other fiat currencies along with it as well.
Moreover, Gemini has already started to support Ethereum-based DeFi tokens at quite a rapid pace which will bring in more liquidity along with it as well.
13. Few Other Differences
These are a few smaller differences but are also very helpful in determining which among the two platforms will serve your purposes in the best way possible.
As for the apps of these two platforms, Gemini will do and allow you to do almost everything that you want from it. This app is not only fully functional and useful but the dark theme makes it softer on the eyes as well.
Spending crypto coins and Altcoins is easy from within the app due to the integration of Gemini with Flexa. And, as for the mobile app of Coinbase it is also a great one but limited to the browser version that allows the users to buy, sell and transfer funds as easily as they can do on a desktop.
The Coinbase platform launched a unique tool called Solidify on June 24, 2021 which allows the users to list particular new crypto tokens faster than before.
However, it does not support as many countries as you will find in Gemini. The full service of Coinbase is available in the United States, Canada, Australia, and Singapore, the United Kingdom as well as a large number of European countries.
In terms of regulation and licensing both Coinbase and Gemini are adequately regulated since these are both located in the US. Coinbase is regulated by The US Securities and Exchange Commission or the SEC and is also currently a publicly traded company on the NASDAQ.
On the other hand, Gemini is registered by the New York State Department of Financial Services or the NYSDFS as a trust company.
Which is Better – Gemini or Coinbase?
The answer to this question depends completely on your trading needs and preferences. Both are good but the one you choose should best suit all your needs. The choice is ideally yours to make.
The differential parameters mentioned above must have provided you with some insight about the backgrounds of each of these two crypto platforms, their features and respective fees as well as the ideology of each company.
Since both are well-established and two of the most regulated, compliant and functional crypto exchanges in the US, nothing can possibly go wrong if you choose any of them.
Still, if you are a beginner in this crypto world and looking to buy or trade crypto coins for the first time, here are a few other things in brief that will help you in making the right choice between the two platforms.
If you want to get more involved in crypto trading and be more active, Gemini should be the one platform suitable for you.
The Active Trader feature of this platform will offer you a good interface, several order options, and a lot of indicators.
However, if you use the Pro version of Coinbase you will have the advantage by a massive margin. It is good to remember one thing at this point.
You should stay away from Coinbase if you are worried about privacy and the trustless decentralized ideology.
As for Gemini, it works along with the regulatory bodies but stays within the peripheries of law to achieve its goal of providing the best space to the mature crypto markets.
Typically, Gemini is a platform that is considered to be one of the most reliable platforms in terms of regulations and financial compliance.
There have been no reports against this platform for working actively to undermine the privacy of the crypto users as well as the security features of the platform, but the same cannot be said for Coinbase.
When it comes to the accessibility aspects of the two platforms, though both are accessible globally, the number of countries supported by Gemini, as of now, is far fewer than the number of countries supported by Coinbase.
However, the good news is that both are accessible in all of the fifty states in the US subject to the compliance with all the regulations regarding crypto trading in the US.
Both these crypto platforms, Gemini and Coinbase, are well-known for their special focus on the security aspects.
Both these platforms come with a few similar and a few different features to secure the accounts and funds of the customers when they buy, sell, or store their crypto assets on the respective platform.
However, Coinbase additionally offers FDIC insurance to the USD funds deposited on the platform of up to 250,000 US Dollars though it does not insure the crypto funds.
When it comes to trading pairs, you will find more of them on Coinbase than Gemini and so is the trading volume which makes a notable difference in the liquidity offered by the two exchanges.
As for the fees, both of these platforms charge quite a high fee as compared to most of the other crypto exchanges. Therefore, both these platforms are not suitable for the active traders.
Still, Gemini has a slight edge since it allows making zero-fee deposits and withdrawals by the clients opting for a wire transfer.
And, the insider report says that Gemini has no plans as of now to connect to popular DEXs or Decentralized Exchanges to allow the users to trade crypto coins.
Therefore, to summarize, it can be said that, Coinbase is:
- A simple platform
- Easy to operate
- A comprehensive mobile app that emulates desktop functionality and
- More rewarding and good for learning.
As for Gemini, it can be said that:
- It allows quick and easy signups
- It allows users to start trading immediately
- It has enough room and features for traders of every skill level and
- It offers hot wallets and insurance to protect funds from hacking attempts and thefts.
With almost all the possible aspects covered in this article, you are now well aware of the differences between Gemini and Coinbase platforms. It will now be very easy to make a choice among the two so that all your specific needs are met.