Long gone are the days when cryptographic currencies and public blockchain-based distributed computing platforms were synonymous with the criminal underground. Today, we use blockchain, a distributed database that maintains a continuously-growing list of records called blocks and forms the backbone of both Bitcoin and Ethereum, to move from central record keeping systems to decentralized systems, eliminating the need for costly middlemen in financial transactions.
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The very nature of technologies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum matches the spirit of the Android operating system, so it should come as no surprise to you that the Play Store is full of useful apps that serve as great examples of real-world applications for blockchain technology. We have selected our top 5 favorite Bitcoin and Ethereum apps for Android, splitting them into two categories for your convenience.
A Bitcoin wallet is a software- or hardware-based tool that allows you to start making payments with merchants and users using Bitcoin, the infamous cryptographic currency that once powered Silk Road, an online black market owned by Ross Ulbricht and the first modern darknet market.
Back in 2011, when Silk Road launched, there weren’t that many Bitcoin wallets for Android to choose from. A lot has changed since then, and current Bitcoin users have a lot more options. We encourage you to spend some time on Bitcoin’s official website and learn as much as you can about the technology, so you can make your own educated decisions. But to help you get started, these are our top 3 favorite Bitcoin wallets for Android.
Headquartered in San Fransisco, Coinbase is a digital asset exchange company that operates exchanges of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other digital assets with fiat currencies in 32 countries, and Bitcoin transactions and storage in 190 countries worldwide. In other words, they are huge.
The company was founded in 2012 by Brian Armstrong and Fred Ehrsam, and they grew to one million users by 2014. Coinbase has recently added Ether, the value token of Ethereum, as only the second digital currency offered to their retail customers, which is not something many other exchanges can brag about.
Coinbase’ Android app has a great rating of 4.5 stars and is often recommended as the best Bitcoin and Ethereum wallet for Android. The wallet allows users to buy and sell digital currency using various payment methods, has real-time and historical charts, price alerts, support for NFC and QR codes, and plenty of other useful features.
The app frequently receives updates, ensuring maximum security of all transactions and leveraging the latest version of the Android operating system to its maximum potential.
Developed openly on GitHub, the Mycelium Bitcoin Wallet allows you to send and receive Bitcoins using your mobile phone. Compared to Coinbase, Mycelium is certainly geared toward seasoned Bitcoin users and blockchain enthusiasts. On the official website, the app proudly lists some of its advanced features, such as the support for Hierarchical Deterministic wallets, single address accounts, watch only accounts, and secure authentication using Bit ID.
If none of these technologies ring any bells, then you are probably better off sticking with Coinbase. That being said, Mycelium is a fantastic option for more advanced Bitcoin users, as it empowers them to precisely manage their transactions and has been confirmed by thousands of users to be incredibly reliable.
Xapo, a Switzerland-based company founded in 2013 by Wences Casares and COO Federico Murrone, stands out with a cold storage vault and a Bitcoin-based debit card. The company also does its best to ensure complete security of their customers, using physical servers located around the globe that are protected by biometric scanner access, 24-7 video surveillance, and armed guards, according to Casares.
Their Android App is a mobile bitcoin wallet and vault that combines convenience and industry-leading security, allowing users to send money to friends or family with ease. You can use it to manage your Bitcoin account just like a checking account, easily tip content creators via Twitter, check the price of bitcoin and other stats in real-time, buy bitcoin directly from Xapo, and more.
Its polished user interface follows the latest Material Design guidelines, resulting in an intuitive and seamless user experience that makes you forget about the underlying technology by placing emphasis on its practical usage.
If you feel like taking a small break from your real-life responsibilities, perhaps you wouldn’t mind earning a few Bitcoins at the same time, would you? Believe it or not, you can earn real Bitcoin by playing addictive Android games, and it’s no scam either.
Blockchain Game is a simple but fun block-stacking game that generates revenue through in-game ads and then redistributes a large portion of it to players. All you have to do in order to claim attractive prizes and receive Bitcoins directly to your wallet is play.
Unlike Blockchain Game, Bitcoin Billionaire uses fake Bitcoins as an in-game currency. Even though you can’t earn real money through the game, we still believe that it’s worth your attention just because of how fun it is to play. Essentially, it’s an idle clicker about raking in Bitcoins and building up a massive fortune.