The name Gemini, the zodiac symbol depicting a pair of twins, is a clever nod to the founders of this cryptocurrency exchange, Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss. If those names sound familiar to you, it’s because they were the twin brothers who sued Mark Zuckerbuerg (successfully) over a claim that he stole the idea for Facebook from them.
With the money gained from the lawsuit (around $65m), they purchased a massive amount of Bitcoins (spending $11m on an amount of BTC that would come to be worth over $1bn) and soon after, they set about building their own crypto-company, Gemini, in 2015. Seeing that Bitcoin and other cryptos held huge potential for the financial world, they wanted to make the safest and most legitimate market for digital asset investors to buy, sell, and store their coins.
- Gemini offers a simplistic user interface that reduces confusion for users. Its elegance is part of its brilliance, as it makes the platform very welcoming to new users. When it comes to simplicity and welcoming new users, Gemini is Coinbase’s biggest rival, but don’t let this ease-of-use detract from the fact that active and experienced traders are fans of the platform’s products and services.
- Security is paramount to the whole operation, so as well as securing accounts and their security keys via WebAuthn, they are the most compliant exchange in the world. They are the first crypto-exchange and custodian to complete their SOC1 Type 1 and SOC2 Type 1&2 exams.
- Depositing money on Gemini can be done in a number of ways, including debit card, bank transfer, and wire.
- Depositing cryptocurrencies into the platform is done very easily, and in the same manner as virtually every other crypto platform. The user sends the digital asset from where it is currently held, to the address provided by Gemini.
- FDIC protection and having never been hacked are two further positives for Gemini.
- To increase legitimacy, Gemini is a New York trust company that is subject to the New York Department of Financial Services’ cybersecurity audits. Their high level of legitimacy increases their viability as an institutional partner.
- All of the cryptocurrency held in Gemini’s exchange wallet is fully insured by a selection of the world’s best insurance companies, as well as embracing the best in cold storage tech to ensure offline security.
- Setting up an account takes just minutes, with approximately 24 hours required for users to have their ID verified:
- For US applicants, this can be a state-issued ID, a driver’s license, a passport, or a passport card.
- For international applicants of approved countries, this could be a passport from their country of citizenship, a national ID card, or a driver’s license from their country of residence.
- Gemini boasts a whole host of interesting financial products:
- Gemini has a partnership with Samsung to power the Samsung Blockchain, providing an extra service to Samsung mobile users.
- High levels of financial regulation will put off many users who want greater levels of privacy and less centralisation or custodial relationships.
- Fewer cryptocurrencies available compared to their major rivals in the centralised exchange space.
- Requires a lot of personal information.
- Has a reputation for blackouts, where the servers temporarily go offline.
- Complex trades are quite difficult to manage on the mobile app, with the desktop platform offering a much better service to users.
- No credit card deposits can be made.
- Only available in a handful of countries.
Which cryptocurrencies can you find on Gemini?
Gemini started out with just Bitcoin and Ethereum and for a long time drew ire from traders who wanted more altcoins on the platform. Eventually, they delivered, now offering
- Bitcoin Cash
- Wrapped Bitcoin
- Basic Attention Token
- Kyber Network
- Enjin Coin
- Keep Network
- PAX Gold
- Wrapped Nexus Mutual
Some more information on fees
Deposits of fiat currency from a debit card cost 3.49% of the total purchase amount. Wire transfers are free on Gemini’s side but can incur a charge from the bank’s side. When depositing Bitcoin or Ethereum, there are network mining charges, which are typical of any exchange.
Withdrawal fees for cryptocurrencies are waived for the first 10 withdrawals for individuals and 50 withdrawals for institutional customers, after that, there is a small fee charged in that cryptocurrency.
The final say
Gemini ticks pretty much every box for users who want a reputable, reliable, and legitimate centralized exchange. Security is industry-leading, they’re totally compliant, and in recent times they have introduced more and more altcoins. With their main competitor being Coinbase, users will have to ask themselves which one is preferential, with the main difference being that Coinbase allows for credit card deposits and Gemini doesn’t. Gemini also offers lower fees than Coinbase, but after that, it’s all very similar. Daily traders who prioritise security are well advised to give Gemini a try.