Bittrex has decisively pulled ahead of Poloniex thanks to their superior product. 100s of coins available for trading, however, the KYC process is no longer a walk in the park.
- Banx Shares
- Bitcoin Cash
- Ethereum Classic
- IO Coin
- Monetary Unit
- VPN Coin
- Crypto Only
- Crypto Only
- Top 5 in many important coins and 100s of cryptos on offer
- Robust trading platform, great mobile offering, good fees
- No coin is too shady for Bittrex to list – particularly if they pay tenancy fee
bittrex is a US-based cryptocurrency exchange, offering a massive selection of altcoins for trade. The founding team has extensive experience in security and development at companies such as blackberry, amazon, microsoft and qualys.
Bittrex is one of the top non-fiat exchanges providing significant cross pair liquidity to some of the largest altcoins. With an extremely scalable platform, it is easy for bittrex to integrate additional cryptocurrencies, and even the most seasoned digital currency aficionado would have trouble recognizing many of the currencies on offer.
One would expect exceptional dedication to security based on the background of the founders, and indeed, bittrex seems to have earned such a reputation. Like all exchanges, bittrex provides 2-factor authentication for withdrawals and API use. They employ what they term “an elastic multi-stage wallet strategy”, which ensures 80-90% of funds are stored offline.
While they have not submitted to an external security audit, the founding team, who engage in similar tasks for the fortune 500 companies listed above, periodically run audits on the platform themselves. Not a disinterested third party, but can’t argue that they aren’t qualified.
Bittrex has a reputation for being quick to add new altcoins to the exchange. This is widely viewed in the industry as a virtue, as altcoin customers enjoy being offered a variety of different coins from which to choose.
However, this has had the unintended effect of aiding dishonest coin developers dump worthless coins, using Bittrex’s – and we should point out they are by no means unique in this regard – relative good standing as cover. Moreover these coins are able to buy ad space within the Bittrex exchange which, though clearly labeled as “sponsored”, could be argued to lend tacit Bittrex support. After all, this space is purchased directly from the Bittrex team.
A good case in point is “Deaf Coin”. Deaf Coin launched in november 2014 exclusively on Bittrex. It was a clone of litecoin, and offered no innovation and was significantly premined. It was almost universally recognized as a pump and dump scam, and yet Bittrex chose to list it on the exchange. Two and a half months later, in February 2015, Bittrex delisted deaf coin, along with 35 other coins from the platform. Most of the coins were broken or abandoned, the remains of previously executed pump and dumps.
Bittrex is not alone in being less-than thorough in their listings of altcoins – for instance, Poloniex removed 17 coins in December of 2014. And indeed, there is a debate in the wider altcoin community as to what extent, if at all, exchange operators should vet the coins offered for trade. In our view, exchange operators should act responsibly when listing a coin, which many might see as an endorsement- or at least a signal as to the integrity of the coin. Listing too many deaf coins will most likely tarnish the image of the exchange and might serve to raise questions as to the integrity of the operators.
Opening an account
Bittrex recently integrated a robust KYC process for all users. New users will need to pass verification, old users must update their accounts to trade.
Post login, a user hits a navigational screen, which has a list of altcoins arranged by trading volume. Above the main listings are “sponsored” currencies, who assumedly pay for their prominent placement. There is a search function allowing easy navigation to any desired pair, which, once clicked, opens the trading platform.
The main real estate is occupied by a chart showing volume and cost trends over selected time frames, and an order book on a separate tab. Vital information about the trading status of the pair is located just to the right. The trade slip is below and offers the most robust set of trading options of any crypto-only exchange, including long and short trades, stop losses and take profit orders, “time in force” orders – such as good until canceled, immediate or cancel, or fill and kill – and conditional orders. Below the trade slips, users can toggle between the summary and the order book and browse personal trade history.
Depositing any altcoin is simply a matter of navigating to the wallet tab, accessible from the upper right hand side of the screen, picking an altcoin and generating a wallet address. Withdrawals are made by entering the destination address, selecting the number of coins to send, and clicking submit.
WIth Poloniex, Bittrex has the most advanced suite of trading functionalities of all the cryptocurrency-only exchanges reviewed by bitreview, and the actual trading platform is extremely well designed and intuitive. However, navigation between currency pairs could be improved, and with some clever design – a la Poloniex perhaps – there would be no need to separate the navigational screen from the trading platform. Additional features, like favorite pairs, would help allow customers a level of customizability, and there is some room to add additional analytic tools, both in more robust charting features, as well as trade history analysis, again like Poloniex.
Support is offered promptly between the hours of 9-1800 PST. Queries outside of these hours could in rare occasion wait up to 24 hours for response. Bittrex offers a superior mobile trading experience to Poloniex.
You Might be Better Off Elsewhere if:
You don’t want to mess around with KYC.
And who does, really? Get an instant 2 bitcoin daily withdrawal limit at binance.
You need to trade in fiat.
Yeah, sort of an obvious one. You can check out some of the best alternative exchanges on our best bitcoin exchange page.
You want to trade on margin.
Bitmex is a far better, more liquid, and cheaper exchange, but if you are trading obscure alts you won’t find them there – limited to like 5 different cryptos.
Bittrex offers the best trading platform in the cryptocurrency-only market, and is backed by a serious team of security and development professionals. The platform is well designed, and the wallet solution can be trusted to hold some coins. Definitely a good option for cross-pair trades. As with any altcoin exchange, independent research into any coin is a must before investing.