There must have been something in the water at Harvard around the time that Mark Zuckerberg attended. If that name sounds familiar, it should. This CEO and creator of Facebook attended the school in 2002-2004, but he wasn’t alone in creating amazing platforms.
At the same time, fellow classmates, the Winklevoss twins, Cameron and Tyler were doing some creating of their own. In 2014, the twins founded Gemini, and by October 2015 launched its exchange.
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What Is the Gemini Exchange?
The Gemini Exchange is a space in which users can buy, sell, trade or exchange digital currencies. For example, you can take your Bitcoin and change it to Ether. Additionally, you can purchase cryptocurrency using the U.S. Dollar.
A Choice in Formats
The platform is available online via a web browser or can be downloaded as a mobile app. The exchange also offers its own mobile wallet, the aptly named Gemini Wallet, as a choice for users to store their passkeys and personal codes.
A Space for Research
In addition to its exchange platform, the Gemini products also boast a plethora of research materials for users. From up-to-the-minute price alerts to long histories of charted data, the site offers buyers a chance to get to know the different types of crypto and how they’ve been trending in the markets.
Users of all skill levels in the cryptocurrency exchange appreciate the user-friendly interface and detailed information presented in clear, understandable ways. The available data is helpful for beginners especially, allowing users to see the information at their fingertips without having to do an extensive collection of figures on their own.
A Secure Business
Gemini also has a secure platform, which is one of the main reasons the twin creators attribute to its creation. Early investors in the cryptocurrency exchanges, the Winklevoss brothers were frustrated that they could not find a space to systematically understand their vast investments.
Discouraged by what was out on the market to date, the two decided they needed to make a trusted space, where they felt comfortable doing business so that others would too. According to the Gemini website, the staff “continues our founders’ focus on security and compliance, in order to build trust.”
In addition to conducting its own testing, those at Gemini “also invested considerable resources to remain transparent about our security posture, through third-party security assessments, including our SOC2 Type 2, ISO 27001, and annual penetration testing” in order to keep the platform secure.
Far beyond two-factor authentication, this company offers just a technology upgrade above many of its competitors.
If its own security measures and third-party check-ups don’t completely make you feel safe, Gemini gives users 200 million other reasons to do so.
The Gemini Custody product offers users a cold storage system for assets held by Gemini, but also provides for a “crypto-native finance platform.” The custody product is unique for the cryptocurrency world, as it provides insurance coverage of $200 million for crypto holdings and is a fiduciary and custodian licensed under New York Banking Law.
These unusual combinations make Gemini what some call the “most secure crypto exchange that has ever existed.”
Options to Add Your Bank Account
When managing your digital assets online, it is also important to take safety measures into your own hands. Gemini allows its users to open a Gemini account and link a bank account in a few ways, offering choice to the user.
For example, under Payment Methods, users can opt to automatically connect an account by clicking “Get Started.” Alternatively, for those that wish to avoid entering personal bank account information into the app, Gemini offers the option to “Manually Link Bank.”
The Gemini Dollar
Like most cryptocurrency exchanges, Gemini offers its own native currency for buying, selling, trading, borrowing, lending, and saving. The Gemini Dollar, abbreviated GUSD, is a 1:1 USD-backed stablecoin issued by Gemini.
Gemini customers can redeem one GUSD for $1 at Gemini. And, you don’t have to just take the platform’s word for it.
The New York Department of Financial Services
Gemini is a U.S. company, and it is regulated as a limited purpose trust company by the New York State Department of Financial Services.
According to its website, “each GUSD corresponds to a U.S. dollar held by Gemini in accounts at U.S. FDIC-insured bank accounts and money market funds holding short-term U.S. treasury bonds and maintained at a custodian. The cash portion of these GUSD reserves may be eligible for FDIC “pass-through” insurance for Gemini customers, in the event of the failure of a bank holding the U.S. dollar deposit portion of the GUSD reserves.”
And if you want to understand its legal jargon, too, Gemini’s website states that “Gemini is a New York trust company regulated by the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYSDFS). We are subject to capital reserve requirements, cybersecurity requirements, and banking compliance standards set forth by the NYSDFS and the New York Banking Law. Gemini is also a fiduciary and Qualified Custodian. Gemini is a New York trust company regulated by the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYSDFS). We are subject to capital reserve requirements, cybersecurity requirements, and banking compliance standards set forth by the NYSDFS and the New York Banking Law. Gemini is also a fiduciary and Qualified Custodian.”
Insurance for the Faint of Heart
Unlike most crypto, the Gemini Dollar offers backing in the “real world,” traditional banking systems. By backing it with the U.S. Dollar, not to mention holding $200 million in reserves, this form of crypto takes a unique stance combining the “old world” forms of money with the new world order: cryptocurrency.
Since the Gemini Dollar is an ERC-20, it is also prepared for use in smart contract development. The token makes it compatible with Ethereum, which is another feature many users appreciate. Additionally, the site states that users can “enjoy transfer[s] in seconds and settlement on the Ethereum blockchain.”
Features of the Exchange
While some appreciate the backing of good old-fashioned money, others enjoy the unique features offered to those holding a Gemini account. For starters, the automation offered allows users to know that their assets are performing at their best, even if they cannot be online at all times.
Features such as Recurring Buys and Dynamic Price Alerts give the users comfort knowing their crypto portfolio is monitored 24/7. Users can create price alerts to keep themselves informed. The Gemini platform offers automated features that keep the “labor” to a minimum.
Other desirable features enjoyed by Gemini’s crypto investors include:
- Ability to enable crypto withdrawals to go only to approved addresses
- Transaction histories and downloadable account statements
- Industry-leading customer support
- At-a-Glance Portfolio reports showing account balance, 24-hour change, and percent change.
- Codes that require two-factor authentication
- Low and sometimes no trading fees that Gemini charges
- Transparent crypto prices
Many a Gemini review tout these features as making it one of the best-regulated cryptocurrency exchange platforms out there. From the beginner to the experienced trader, the Gemini platform offers a number of abilities that please the masses.
Even basic abilities to automate, such as allowing a user to create price alerts, gives Gemini users a leg up on the competition. Knowing your crypto balance, trading crypto at optimal price points, and having low Gemini fees make the product attractive to users.
Gemini Earn Account
There are many ways that investors attempt to make a buck on the cryptocurrency trading platform. Gemini makes it easy for those that like to do very little by offering an Earn Account.
The Gemini Earn Account allows users to place digital assets into a space much like a traditional savings account. There, as their site explains, you can “put your crypto to work. With Gemini Earn, you can receive up to 8.05% APY on your cryptocurrency, including stablecoins.”
Additionally, Gemini offers the option to not only earn interest on your crypto holdings but allows you to make transactions at any time without a major cost to you.
“You can redeem and move your cryptocurrency back to your trading account (plus interest) at any time, with no minimums, and no transfer or redemption fees,” said the site, giving Gemini account holders the freedom to come and go as they please.
By simply allowing your crypto to sit in a Gemini Earn space, you can earn money by becoming a crypto investor with minimal effort.
If you are longing to skip out on traditional banking altogether and just live on crypto alone, you may find yourself limited in options. Gemini has you covered there, too. With Gemini Pay, much like apps like Google Pay or Apple Pay, users can use crypto to make everyday purchases.
Available via the iPhone App Store, Google Play, and the Samsung Galaxy Store, the Gemini Pay app lets users pay with crypto in over 30,000 retail stores in the United States. There are no transaction fees, and all payments are secure and private.
This opportunity gives users not only a platform to buy, sell, and store crypto, but also use it in daily life. If withdrawing crypto becomes as easy as your basic daily transactions with apps like Gemini Pay, the world may become more interested in the cryptocurrency market and its possibilities.
Having a handy and portable payment method (which additionally charges no withdrawal fees) is a huge win in the crypto space. And, since users also can receive price alerts, knowing your balance should never be a problem.
Types of Traded Crypto
The Gemini Exchange offers buying, selling, and trading, as well as the exchange of, over 75 types of the most popular cryptocurrencies on the market. Some of its most popular transactions include Bitcoin, Ether, USD Coin, Dogecoin, XRP, Terra, and Solana.
Bitcoin Cash, Not Bitcoin
While many platforms buy and sell Bitcoin, its lesser-known “little brother,” known as Bitcoin Cash, has made its mark on the Gemini Exchange.
Bitcoin Cash is a cryptocurrency and blockchain that mimics an electronic cash payment system. It differentiates itself from Bitcoin by processing more transactions.
Bitcoin Cash is “a fork of Bitcoin” and is technically similar when it comes to the science behind it. However, according to Gemini’s website, “its increased block size makes it more likely to be used as a payment system as opposed to a store of value system like Bitcoin. The hard fork that created Bitcoin Cash took effect on August 1, 2017. Bitcoin holders, as of common block 478558 on August 1, 2017, at approximately 13:16 UTC, equivalently owned the same amount of Bitcoin Cash as bitcoin held at that time. The first independent Bitcoin Cash block was 478559.”
Not the Same Blockchain
Bitcoin Cash or BCH is the digital asset token of the Bitcoin Cash network (as bitcoin or BTC is the digital asset token of the Bitcoin network).
Gemini explains on its site that “All BCH balances and transactions are recorded on the Bitcoin Cash blockchain. Similar to Bitcoin, the smallest subunit of BCH is the ‘satoshi,’ which is equal to 10-8 BCH or one hundred-millionth of a BCH (0.00000001 BCH). Bitcoin Cash can be bought and sold for fiat currency or other digital currencies.”
Bitcoin Cash can be purchased on a cryptocurrency exchange and stored in a crypto wallet and custodian like Gemini.
Bitcoin Cash Supply
As a large component of its trading volume, Gemini explains to its customers the unique aspects of its traded crypto.
“The supply of Bitcoin Cash is deterministic and fixed at 21 million BCH,” said the Gemini website of this particular crypto. “The supply schedule is embedded in the Bitcoin Cash protocol.”
The Downside to Gemini
Clearly, the Gemini Trust Company LLC and its corresponding apps and browser features offer a lot to the average user. But like anything in life, there is always a downside. Nothing is perfect, and while millions of users worldwide enjoy its robust features, there are a few complaints, too.
An Inability to Use a Debit Card
Among the chief complaints, users have about the Gemini Exchange is that the ability to operate with basic debit cards seems to be lacking. While directly linking your bank account is an ability featured on the app, doing so with your 16-digit card is not.
Gemini even offers its own Gemini credit card, but is currently not compatible with typical debit card use, as many American clients are accustomed to having.
Big Hits on Small Trades
Overall, Gemini has a fee structure that many appreciate. It is in line with other platforms and doesn’t become too excessive when asking you to help with the cost of doing business. However, this largely applies to doing large trades.
The company’s typical 1.49% transaction fee is on orders over $200. Smaller fees, however, come with larger costs. So, while many enjoy the ability to make very small transactions on the exchange, it may come at a very large expense.
For example, if you were to order $5 worth of Bitcoin on your Gemini app, the platform would charge a $0.99 transaction fee, which is nearly 20% of your order amount. If you are on the platform to make minor transactions, be aware of these fees.
Limited Cryptocurrency Brands
While boasting over 75 brands of crypto, active traders may be disappointed in Gemini’s focus. There are thousands of crypto names out there, and 75 starts to sound less exciting compared to the overall bounty of the worldwide market.
If you want to buy bitcoin, you are fine. But, Gemini focuses on the ERC-20 token, meaning that they limit themselves often by honing in on the Ethereum cryptocurrency holdings. In the long run, this can be a hindrance for those seeking to use a mobile app to do more than this.
Yes, they can make selling crypto easy, but will its blinders for Ethereum limit its access now and in the future to other cryptos? Those that buy, sell, and store crypto with Gemini, and appreciate the Gemini Trust, may find themselves restrained as more and more options flood the crypto space.
The Future of Gemini
No one can tell you the precise future of the Gemini Trust Company LLC. But, one thing is for sure, they are likely here for a long time to come. Offering crypto trades is just the beginning of a platform like Gemini for this robust, mobile app. Far beyond the ability to just buy bitcoin or sell crypto, users can find protection in industry-leading security experts, while securely using Gemini for an exchange or crypto storage system.
All investments carry risks, and it is important to stay informed of the ever-changing marketplace. Be sure to gather the facts before making your decisions.
For more information on the Gemini Trust Company LLC, check its website or continue to tune into FLOLiO for updated, well-researched, and informative resources to assist in your trading strategies.