IIAwards - Review of Binance
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30 October
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As part of the recently announced IIAwards, in which we celebrate innovations in the fintech and crypto industry, today we will talk about Binance.

General information

Launched in 2017, Binance is the world’s leading blockchain and cryptocurrency infrastructure provider with a financial product suite that includes the largest digital asset exchange by volume. Binance platform features an unmatched portfolio of crypto products and offerings. The company's mission is to provide core infrastructure services for organizing the world’s crypto. The project was founded by Chinese national Changpeng Zhao (CZ).

Commissions & fees - (3/5)

Binance fees are one of the lowest in the industry. Customers are charged 0.1% on every trade, meaning if you traded 1 ETH, you would only be charged 0.001 ETH. What’s more, there is no fee charged for cryptocurrency/fund deposits, though withdrawals come with a transaction fee that varies depending upon the cryptocurrency. For example, at the time of writing, for every Litecoin (LTC) that you want to withdraw, it would cost you 0.01 LTC in fees. However, if the value of Litecoin increased, so is the withdrawal fee. This is because the fee is fixed to the price of Litecoin, and not to the price of USD (or your local currency). There are no limits to the value of deposits you make, but if you want to withdraw more than 2 BTCs worth of cryptocurrency, then you would need to verify your account further. This can be done by submitting identification, such as your passport.

Markets & products - (4/5)

Like a standard exchange, Binance offers services around the trading, listing, fundraising and de-listing or withdrawal of cryptocurrencies. Cryptocurrency enthusiasts willing to launch their own tokens can use Binance for raising funds through initial coin offerings (ICOs). Binance is used by a large number of traders and participants for exchanging and investing in various cryptocurrencies. It supports trading in more than 150 coins, including popular ones like Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and its own native BNB tokens, and the list continues to grow. Due to its popularity, the company provides great liquidity to its users - with an approximate daily trading volume of $2 billion on average, Binance services more than 50% market volume on majority of listings.

The company also services clients in more than 180 different countries and regions and it employs people from more than 40 different countries and regions. A very neat feature, Binance provides a peer-to-peer (P2P) trading service, which connects buyers and sellers of cryptocurrency directly. This facilitates fiat payments, with a wide variety of payment options that depend on the users’ preferences.

Advanced trading platform - (1/5)

Trading on Binance is fairly easy and user friendly. There’s an impressive cryptocurrency selection available for trading in conjunction with Bitcoin, Ether, BNB, XRP and Tether trading pairs. Crypto/fiat pairs are also available on Binance’s fiat markets. Users can choose between the "basic," "classic" and "advanced" interfaces for order book style trading plus margin, peer-to-peer and OTC trading options. For spot trading, users can select between three different interfaces, based on their experience level. The classic interface allows a quick view of market and trading pairs, making it easier to switch pairs. The advanced view gives users access to advanced charting tools. Margin trading is available for selected trading pairs, allowing users to trade with leverage of up to 10x on some coins. Users can choose between cross margin, which risks your entire margin account balance, and isolated margin, which restricts your potential losses to a single trading pair.

Binance currently supports three types of trade orders: limit, market and stop limit orders. Limit orders are executed only at the limit price set by the trader, market orders are executed immediately at the best available market price, while stop limit orders become valid orders only when the price reaches a specified level. Binance Futures, which was launched in 2019, enables traders to speculate on the price of (rather than to purchase and sell) Bitcoin and various popular altcoins, including Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, Ripple and more. The platform allows leveraged trading of up to 125x, which means that traders can multiply their profits (but also losses) by 125 – more than any other major platform. Binance Futures balances are held separately from users’ regular trading accounts and must be funded with Tether (USDT) as collateral. All profits and losses will also be realized in USDT.

Innovative account opening - (2/5)

In order to to set up a Binance account, you need to follow these steps:

  • Visit the Binance homepage and then click on "Register".
  • Enter your e-mail address and choose a password.
  • Finally, you need to confirm your e-mail address.
  • When you log in for the first time, a notification will ask you if you want to set up two-factor authentication.
  • Enter your mobile number and complete the setup.

The process behind this is fairly simple and straightforward. You don’t even have to verify your account for level 1, which has a 2-BTC daily withdrawal limit. For level 2 which allows up to 100 BTCs per day, you need to upload a photo ID and wait till you are approved. There are higher limits, but you will need to contact Binance directly if you wish to arrange that. Time for verification can vary depending on how busy the site support staff are, so make sure to plan ahead if you wish to withdraw large amounts. Make sure this step is complete before depositing and trading large sums on the exchange!

Customer service - (4/5)

The company is recognized for its excellent customer support. Most support inquiries need to be made via the site’s e-mail contact form. As with most major trading exchanges, you may have to wait a while for a response simply due to the sheer growth in demand. There is a customer service bot chat to tap into, but some of the responses are automated (and in some cases, exclusively in Chinese). Approximately, 80% of the tickets are solved in 24 hours or less, granting a 95% satisfaction rate to its users. The website is available in more than 15 different languages. On the other hand, one major problem does appear to be a thorn in the site’s side: many reviews complain about a faulty 2FA/SMS confirmation. The temperamental nature of this setup for Binance means that a few customers struggle to withdraw funds. What is more, unfortunately, Binance does not operate a telephone support hotline.

Education - (5/5)

In addition to exchange-specific services, Binance also offers other tools, platforms and services for supporting the overall blockchain ecosystem. Binance has a blockchain technology incubator called Binance Labs, which focuses on nurturing promising pre-ICO stage projects. It helps deserving cryptocurrency project teams by providing necessary funding for development, advisory resources and a launchpad for any necessary listing and fundraising exercises. Binance also offers a site called LaunchPad for hosting new and emerging blockchain projects. One can also create APIs, or Application Programming Interfaces. The company has also launched numerous associated initiatives to improve the aggregate crypto ecosystem:

  • Binance Academy: Free learning portal with educational articles, videos and online courses on blockchain, crypto, investing and more.
  • Binance Research: Institutional-grade insights and analysis for cryptocurrency investors.
  • Binance China Blockchain Institute: Blockchain-powered digital financial infrastructure and services builder focusing on researching blockchain technology, industrial applications and governance models while providing tools, resources, education, training and certification for blockchain developers, startups and entrepreneurs.
  • CoinMarketCap: Frequently referenced and trusted price-tracking website for thousands of cryptocurrencies.
  • DappReview: Leading data-driven decentralized applications (dApps) platform, delivering news, user insights and market analytics/reports, in addition to fund-raising, product development, marketing and more for developers.
  • Binance Charity: World’s first blockchain-powered not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing transparent and inclusive philanthropy.

Mobile trading / Apps - (2/5)

Binance’s mobile app is currently available for Android (including Android APK) and iOS. Both mobile apps allow you to access most of the features of the web platform, including fiat gateway, Binance Futures, Binance Options, spot trading, margin trading, P2P trading and more. The app allows the company's clients to set price alerts with a single tap to stay up to date on the latest prices and trends; switch between Lite and Pro interfaces with a single tap, as well as Spend Bitcoin or BNB at over 50 million merchants worldwide when you sign up for the Binance Card.

UI / UX - (2/5)

Binance users have the opportunity to choose between two different trading alternatives, basic and advanced. Its website and trading pages were revamped in 2019, and as a result, they’re easy to understand and navigate for both beginners and experienced users. It even provides the possibility of moving between Basic, Classic and Advanced trading screens, so that more experienced traders can benefit from having more information (such as user funds) contained on a single page. In contrast, less experienced traders can make token swaps without an overwhelming array of windows and graphs.

The basic interface is the easiest way to trade and consists of simple options to select two cryptocurrencies and make a conversion. The classic mode is more advanced and brings back the "classic" look and feel of Binance exchange. It includes advanced order types, price and market depth charts, bid and ask order books, as well as trade history and open orders overview window. Besides, it allows you to trade with margin and options, and thus is suitable for more advanced retail investors. Last but not least, there is an advanced trading interface. It displays all of the same options as Classic view, but all windows are put together in a somewhat cleaner and tidier manner. It’s the latest addition to the Binance’s interface and has a modern feel to it.

Digital security - (3/5)

Security at Binance is generally sound, although the exchange has experienced a significant hack in May of 2019. The exchange lost over 7,000 BTCs due to a number of compromised user accounts and used its #SAFU fund (Secure Asset Fund for Users) for user compensations. Since then, the exchange has strengthened its security by introducing the Universal 2nd Factor (U2F) authentication method and enhancing its exchange monitoring capabilities. Besides, Binance encourages users to enable two-factor authentication (2FA) using either Google Authenticator or SMS authentication. Also, traders have an option to whitelist addresses and set up an anti-phishing code. It also has a fairly extensive security FAQ in its support section, where it advises its users on how to guard against phishing attempts and personal security lapses.

Every withdrawal from Binance must be confirmed by e-mail. As of 2020, Binance boasts of having state-of-the-art artificial intelligence (AI) risk control solutions that use identity and facial recognition, big data analytics and cyber forensic investigations to monitor each movement that takes place on the exchange and identifies suspicious and irregular activities. That said, recent events have shown that Binance can respond quickly to significant threats and protect customers' funds. In contrast to other companies in the industry, Binance has a reputation of excellent quality project selection, as its acceptance rate is less than 3% from the amount of total listing applications.

Novelties

As of 2020, Binance accepts multiple fiat currencies, including USD, EUR, GBP, thus allowing beginners to buy a cryptocurrency for the first time. First, you would need to purchase a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin or Ethereum using fiat, and then you can deposit that into Binance and trade for other coins.

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