Gemini Review for Canada 2023
Making Crypto Simple
Gemini enjoys a reputation as one of the most recognized cryptocurrency exchanges and trading platforms that deal in all popular cryptocurrencies and digital assets such as Bitcoin, Chainlink, Ethereum, Litecoin, and Maker.
The exchange platform was founded in 2014 in the United States by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss. Gemini is in regulation with the FDIC (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation) and it provides its clients with insurance on USD deposits, an intuitive user-friendly interface, and ample liquidity.
It features an OTC desk and supports USD deposits that can be transferred in multiple ways, including via debit/credit card, crypto transfers, bank transfers, etc.
The crypto trading platform’s fees are a bit on the steeper rate, however, this is balanced out by the state-of-the-art security structure that features a mandatory know-your-customer (KYC) process upon registration. The platform does not support advanced trading features such as margin and leverage trading.
Let’s get into the details.
Gemini got its start in New York City, largely as a direct result of the lawsuit settlement that the Winklevoss twins got from Facebook. The platform is constantly among the top crypto platforms in the United States. To get started on Gemini, users need to connect their Gemini accounts to their bank account. The platform supports crypto-to-crypto deposits and employs maker and taker fees that are directly tied to the trading volumes. Although fees start at a high 1.00%, they can go to as low as 0.10% and 0.00% for takers and makers respectively.
The Gemini Dollar (GUSD) was launched In 2018 as a peg ERC20 token that has a 1:1 ratio with the US dollar and the backing of the State Street Bank and Trust Company. The platform also has Nifty Gateway on its roster for its NFTs. Gemini has also launched a cryptocurrency retirement plan, should you choose to go digital after getting the gold watch. The platform offers a mobile app for both Android and iOS devices.
Features and Coverage
The trading platform provides an excellent trading experience for beginner and veteran traders alike. The interface is intuitive and easy to navigate, however, it can be further customized. It offers direct fiat-to-crypto trades, an OTC desk, insurance on fiat currencies, an expeditive customer support team, no fees on fiat and crypto deposits, and most important of all, it provides reliability and advanced security measures.
In order to register a Gemini account, users are asked to provide their full legal name, a valid phone number, their social security number, their date of birth, their address of residence, and an active email address. However, should users want to be fully verified and enjoy the platform at its full capacity, then they will have to provide a copy of their passport or alternatively, their driver’s license. As the platform requires extensive documentation, verification times can be anywhere from 24 hours to a full work week.
Being a United States crypto exchange platform, the Gemini exchange covers all of the US territories and an additional 50 other countries globally.
Trading Fees and Payment Methods
Gemini employs an advanced fee structure. Their fees come in categories which include the following: web fees, ActiveTrader fees, custody fees, API fees, mobile fees, and transfer fees.
Web and Mobile Fees
Trades ordered and executed through the exchange platform’s website or mobile phone app are subject to both a convenience and a transaction fee. Convenience fees come at a fixed 0.5%, and transaction fees are based on the employed currency and the volume. Traders are usually looking at a 0.5% convenience fee and trading fees that are usually in the 1.49% to 2.99% ballpark when it comes to US dollars.
Gemini does not provide the cheapest fee structure on the market, however, they’re not the direst either. If you happen to be a low-volume trader, you might want to do some research and compare the fees with some of its competitors such as Binance, Bittrex, Bitstamp, Coinbase, Coinbase Pro, BitFlyer, and Kraken.
Activetrader and API Fees
Users may choose the ActiveTrader platform or the API as their default crypto board. API orders are based on 30-day trading volumes and start at 0.25% for takes, and 0.10% for makers, while employing an 0.15% auction fee for volumes lower than $1 million.
Large investors can bring these numbers down to 0.00%. The concept is simple: the more you trade, the lower the fees become. Nevertheless, ActiveTrader and API trading aren’t best suited for novice users and it takes a trader that has been around the block a couple of times to fully utilize them and make the most of what the platform has to offer.
Gemini custody accounts are aimed at investors that are in the practice of holding on to their digital assets for prolonged periods of time. The platform charges an annual custody fee of 0.4% and a fixed $125 fee on withdrawals. Gemini does not employ deposit or withdrawal fees on any of its supported currencies and methods (GUSD, wire, ACH), be it fiat or crypto. However, debit and credit card transfers come at a steep 3.49%.
The platform’s security features are probably the best that money can buy at this point. Gemini built its reputation on its security and safety protocols and structures. As the platform is registered in New York, it follows the regulations of the New York Department of Financial Services. Gemini is the very first trading exchange platform to have a SOC 1 Type 1 certificate and both SOC 2 Type 1 and 2 certificates worldwide. The SOC 1 and 2 certificates are globally and internationally recognized, which saves the platform a lot of paperwork and administration when extending their services to international waters.
All Gemini employees have to undergo mandatory criminal background checks throughout their employment at the company. What’s more, the platform stores most user funds in cold storage. Hardware security modules, or HSMs, are a staple at Gemini, all of which are FIPS 140-2 Level 3 vaults and are spread out at different secure locations.
The platform also insures fiat deposits, however, in order to activate Gemini’s insurance feature, users have to be US citizens and have a linked account to a US bank. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) covers losses up to $250,000.
The platform asks users to activate the two-factor authentication feature and offers additional protection layers in the form of passwords, PINs, hardware keys, biometric passports, and government-issued IDs.
The platform provides an Authy authentication app that is more secure than traditional SMS verification. The app can be downloaded to a computer or smartphone and it generates a one-time token number.
Hardware Security Keys
In partnership with WebAuthn, Gemini supports hardware security keys such as MacOS TouchID, Windows Hello, Feitian Yubikeys, and hardware wallets such as Ledger and Trezor.
The USB security keys verify both user credentials and the website URL so that users are always safe from phishing.
Withdrawal Address Whitelisting
The trading platform also employs a whitelist on withdrawals. Upon activation, only a select number of IP addresses are eligible to make withdrawals from the account. Whitelist verification on new addresses can take up to 7 days in order to be processed and approved. Addresses are removed from the whitelist by contacting Gemini customer support.
Deposit and Withdrawal Methods
Gemini supports deposits and withdrawals for both crypto and fiat currencies. Fiat deposits are made possible by connecting and verifying a bank account. From there, users can take advantage of the ACH bank deposit method if they happen to be in the US or choose the wire transfer feature if they happen to be depositing funds from abroad. All fiat currencies are automatically converted to USD before they appear in the account balance.
Users are able to make deposits in digital assets such as Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Basic Attention Token (BAT), Litecoin (LTC), Ethereum (ETH), Zcash (ZEC), Orchid (OXT), and Chainlink (LINK). All they need to do is make a direct deposit from their storage to their Gemini account. Gemini does not support a vast selection of crypto assets, however, their service on the ones that it does support is second to none.
A Few Words Before You Go…
If reliability and safety are your game, then Gemini is the name. The platform has never fallen prey to malicious attacks and has never been breached. The SOC 2 Type 1 and Type 2 security certificates are proof that user assets and the users themselves are as safe as can be. Furthermore, Gemini insures fiat deposits, provides advanced hardware security module cold storage, employs 2FA, and a whitelist on withdrawals.
All in all, Gemini is a trading platform that deserves your attention – it certainly has ours.
Frequently Asked Questions
Gemini is one of the most advanced platforms when it comes to safety and security.
The platform has never been breached in the whole of its existence. Furthermore, Gemini insures all user funds with the American FDIC and most digital assets are stored offline.
The platform is fully encrypted and employs a multi-signature protocol, so even if someone manages to get in, they won’t be able to go further than the initial gate.
Gemini offers a mobile app for both Android and iOS users. The smartphone app mirrors their desktop platform as it provides all the bells and whistles and it fits in your pocket. Trades and asset transfers are fully optimized within the app and users will not face any limitations when using it.
Yes, the Gemini Wallet is the exchange platform’s native wallet, however, the platform also supports third-party wallets such as the Samsung Blockchain Wallet. The native platform wallet is in compliance with the US Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS).
Coinbase is one of the most popular crypto exchange platforms in the industry for a reason. It provides an all-around good service, stability, and an intuitive interface. The fee structure is leaning towards that of pricier exchanges, especially if you happen to be a high-volume trader.