Home GuidesBitcoin

Follow us on Twitter or join our Telegram

3 Ways To Set Up a Bitcoin Wallet

how to set up a bitcoin wallet

To buy and sell bitcoin, you need a Bitcoin wallet. It is like a bank account, where you receive, store, and send money. The wallet safeguards the secret code (private key) you need to use your bitcoins and helps manage transactions. Just like your credit card numbers, you need to keep it as secure as possible. Otherwise, someone might access your funds.

How to set up a Bitcoin wallet?

There are many Bitcoin wallets out there, and all of them differ in their characteristics. Mobile software wallets are great for day-to-day use, while desktop software wallets bring about a great balance between convenience and security. Lightweight web wallets are the best choice for quick online transactions. Cold encrypted hardware wallets like Ledger or Trezor are the best for long-term storage of bitcoin. However, unlike other options, hardware wallets aren’t free and cost $50 or more.

Let us look closer at these three ways to set up a Bitcoin wallet.

ways to set up a bitcoin wallet
How to set up a Bitcoin wallet on your mobile phone? Source: Pixabay.

1.Set up a software Bitcoin wallet

The easiest way to get a Bitcoin wallet is to download and install a free software wallet app or client. A software wallet is a program that stores private and public keys and interacts with blockchain to enable users to send and receive digital currency and monitor their balance. There are two types of software wallets - mobile and desktop.

Mobile software wallets are lightweight Bitcoin clients that enable you to carry your bitcoins everywhere. It can be extremely convenient at times. To set it up, you have to download a Bitcoin wallet of choice. There are many of those in the app store, but here are a few you can trust:

  • Mycellium
  • Bread (BRD) wallet
  • Bitcoin wallet
  • Electrum
  • Samourai
how to set up a mobile bitcoin wallet
Mobile bitcoin wallet. Source: Pixabay, Cryptonews.

Desktop software wallets have more functions and are generally considered more secure than mobile wallets, but they are also heavier and more difficult to use.

The most popular desktop wallets include:

  • Bitcoin Core
  • Armory
  • Electrum
  • Wasabi
  • Green Address

Download them from their respective websites and install them by following provided instructions - each wallet is slightly different from the others.

However, it is not recommended to keep all your bitcoin holdings in software wallets alone, unless you truly trust your cybersecurity skills and are 100% sure no one can break into your devices.

ways to set up bitcoin wallet
Desktop Bitcoin wallet. Source: Wikipedia Commons.

2. Set up a bitcoin web wallet

Another simple way to open a Bitcoin wallet is by using a web service. Web-based wallets store your private keys online on a server controlled by an admin group. Some bitcoin web wallets, like Coinbase, conveniently link between your mobile and software wallets. You can access this wallet anywhere where you have an internet connection, which makes it a popular and convenient choice.

However, be aware the website is in charge of your private keys and can take your bitcoin out of your control at any time, which is why web wallets are good for storing only limited amounts of bitcoin. While there are only a few instances where web-wallet service providers had malicious intentions, web wallet service providers are very attractive for hackers, which significantly increases the risk of security breaches.

Popular Bitcoin web wallets include:

  • Coinbase
  • Blockchain.info
  • BTC.com
  • Rahakott
  • BitGo

3. Set up a Bitcoin hardware wallet

Last but not least, we have bitcoin hardware wallets, which are considered the most secure way to store your bitcoins long-term.

how to set up a bitcoin wallet
Bitcoin hardware wallet Nano Ledger S. Source: Marko Verch / Flickr.

Hardware wallets are physical devices that hold private keys electronically and facilitate transactions. These wallets can be carried with you and don’t rely on keeping funds in a third party's hands. However, you need to buy them. They start from $50, so in most cases, it only makes sense to buy one if you plan on storing $1000 or more in bitcoin.

The most recommended Bitcoin hardware wallets include:

3 Ways To Set Up a Bitcoin Wallet 101

Setting them up means following the instructions provided by the manufacturer, as, again, each wallet is different. Never buy a hardware wallet from anyone else but their manufacturer.

If you are looking for a free and secure non-electronic wallet, you might consider setting up a paper Bitcoin wallet.

Also, you can follow these practical tips on how to choose a Bitcoin wallet and how to keep your bitcoins secure.

More Guides

How To Buy Bitcoin in the United States?

If you live in the United States, you are lucky to enjoy one of the best-developed Bitcoin ecosystems in the world. As a matter of fact, you can boast of the highest concentration of Bitcoin ATM’s, service providers, and retailers who accept it...

Read more

What is Bitcoin Lightning Network?

Bitcoin Lightning Network is a second-layer solution that uses payment channels in order to settle transactions quickly without having to wait for block confirmations.

Read more

Will Bitcoin Ever Be Stable?

Although Bitcoin has a $60 billion market cap at the moment, it is still nothing when compared with huge global currency markets. Until the BTC market cap starts to grow into the trillions, it is highly unlikely that it will be stable enough to...

Read more

A Beginner's Guide to Bitcoin ETFs

A new way of trading and investing in crypto technology, Bitcoin ETFs made headlines in 2018. Proponents of ETFs describe them as tools for driving Bitcoin adoption and a shortcut to introducing investors to the full potential of cryptos.

Read more

Bitcoin History

Public Bitcoin history begins on 18 August 2008, when the domain name bitcoin.org was registered. Later that year on 31 October, a link to a paper authored by mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto titled “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System”...

Read more

Countries Where Bitcoin Is Banned or Legal In 2021

When preparing to buy Bitcoin, one of your first steps should be to find out whether it is legal in your country or not. If you already know the state of your own country but are curious for the rest of them, read on! Bitcoin is not just legal or...

Read more