Uphold Review – Is This Crypto Exchange A Top Choice?

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By Alex Halstedt

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Uphold Review

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Uphold Review

  • Trading Platform
  • Ease of Use
  • Fees
  • Trading Tools
  • Platforms Offered
  • Customer Service
  • Platform & Account Security
4.1

Summary

Uphold is a cryptocurrency exchange founded in 2015 with the goal of making it simple to buy cryptocurrencies and other digital assets. The Uphold Exchange offers crypto investing for over 60 cryptocurrencies as well as trading for equities, precious metals, and environmental assets. This exchange’s features also include debit cards, limit orders, automated trading, and a wallet. Learn more by reading our complete Uphold review.

Pros

  • Uphold card allows users to make purchases using cash, or any assets that they may have in their Uphold wallet
  • Large number of national currencies supported vs Coinbase and other cryptocurrency exchanges
  • Wide range of assets available on Uphold, including cryptocurrency, precious metals, and U.S. stock trading
  • Comprehensive market data provided with assets to help investors make informed decisions
  • Provides automatic currency conversion in a simple process
  • Uphold wallet has intuitive account funding 
  • Easy to use and well-tailored for a beginner
  • Fully functional mobile app

Cons

  • Uphold will likely not suit experienced traders that utilize technical analysis on charts, as the exchange is not as in-depth in this regard as other exchanges in the space
  • Can be some confusion regarding the Uphold wallet and the digital wallets offered
  • Fees are not set in stone, and instead are offered in an average spread, with some fees being relatively high if attempting to withdraw funds via bank account

About Uphold

With the latest boom in the cryptocurrency industry, there has been an ever-growing amount of exchanges within the space. Having choices is a great benefit, but it can also become quite overwhelming when trying to decide which crypto exchange to use. Uphold is an exchange that you may be aware of, especially if you use the Brave internet browser and have opted into the BAT rewards program.

What sort of services does Uphold offer vs. Coinbase and other exchanges? With this Uphold review, we will cover every facet of the Uphold cryptocurrency exchange in order to help you decide if the exchange is right for you. Some of the topics covered in the article will include:

  • A brief history of the exchange
  • The trading services offered on the platform
  • The various trading fees and other associated fees within the exchange
  • Customer support and security
  • The process of creating a new Uphold account

As this Uphold review only aims to inform, the content within this article should not be taken as financial investment advice of any kind. If you are considering using any cryptocurrency exchange, it is important that you seek out your own independent financial advice from a qualified advisor. 

Uphold Main

A Brief History of Uphold

Uphold was initially first established in 2015, holding operating licenses in both the US and the UK. The cryptocurrency exchange soon began to expand its reach, offering services to over 180 different countries worldwide. The company created the exchange with the idea of providing an easy way for users to buy cryptocurrencies and other digital assets, with the capability of easily converting from one asset to another. Uphold is unique in offering a level of public transparency, as the company opts to report its reserve holdings publicly for all to see.

Though there is a wide offering of assets available on Uphold, there is an Uphold disclaimer regarding the offerings available in each jurisdiction, as certain residents will not be able to access financial services that are unlawful. This is because many capital crypto-assets are largely unregulated, and the exchange is fully regulated. Uphold is run by Uphold Europe Limited in the UK/EU region, as well as Uphold HQ in the U.S. The Uphold team consists of members with an extensive background in finance.

Today, the Uphold exchange has a fairly large trading volume, with over $4 billion transacted since 2015. As mentioned previously, Uphold currently holds a partnership with the Brave internet browser, with ad-rewards users having their BAT deposited into an Uphold account. 

Uphold Platform

The Uphold exchange is relatively different than most other cryptocurrency exchanges, as it tends to cater to a more convenient way of buying, selling, trading, or holding crypto-assets. The Uphold experience is very much akin to automatic currency conversion. However, this exchange should not be overlooked because of its simplicity, as Uphold offers a very wide range of different assets to its account holders. As Uphold has intuitive account funding, these assets can be easily purchased using funds from a bank account transfer, with support for a large number of different national currencies. 

Crypto-Assets

Uphold offers crypto-asset investing with over 60 different cryptocurrencies on its platform. These can be easily bought or sold with the click of a button, simplifying the entire process. This might not be the most ideal for experienced traders who rely on technical analysis, but it is very ideal if you are a person that just wishes to make simple transactions without necessarily worrying about price movement. It should be noted that trading or holding crypto assets does have substantial risk. 

Some of the cryptocurrencies available on Uphold include:

  • Bitcoin
  • Bitcoin Cash
  • Bitcoin Gold
  • Ethereum
  • Basic Attention Token (BAT)
  • Enjin (ENJ)
  • SAND
  • OXT

Uphold Crypto

Equities

Uphold also offers stock trading in a large range of U.S. stocks. Users can spend as little as $1 to purchase a fraction of 40 different stocks. Purchasing a fraction of a stock will still entitle the user to receive dividends if the stock supports dividend payouts. 

Purchasing the stock is relatively easy, and has the same simplicity as Uphold’s cryptocurrency markets. By going to the Equities page on the Uphold website, the user will be provided with the full listing of the stocks Uphold supports. Each stock has an in-depth company overview based on comprehensive market data, with balanced insights given in regard to market sentiment.

To give an example of Uphold’s offerings in this regard, the following stocks can be purchased on the platform:

  • Tesla
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • NVIDIA
  • Facebook
  • Google (Alphabet)
  • AMD
  • Disney
  • Berkshire Hathaway

Uphold Stocks

Precious Metals

Another unique service that Uphold offers is the ability to trade in precious metals markets. Precious metals are assets with arguably the longest history of being traded throughout human history. To see precious metals being offered alongside stocks and cryptocurrencies feels like a move in the right direction, as it allows an investor to truly diversify their portfolio. Uphold’s precious metal markets work in the same manner as the Crypto-Assets and Equities markets.

The various precious metals that Uphold supports are as follows:

  • Gold
  • Silver
  • Platinum
  • Palladium

Uphold Metals

Environmental Assets

A very unique service that Uphold offers is the ability to invest in environmental assets. To receive this distinction, the asset has to be proven to be either environmentally sustainable or be directly correlated to sustainable environmental practices. Currently, there are two different assets available on the platform that have received this distinction, Bitcoin Zero (emissions-free network) and UPCO2 (the first blockchain-based carbon offset token).

Uphold Environment

How Funds are Stored on Uphold

As mentioned previously, the Uphold trading platform primarily caters to users who want a simple way of transacting from one currency to another without worrying about the price movement of an asset. Because of this, Uphold has a fairly unique way of handling how a user’s funds are managed within the account.

When Uphold users make a purchase or conversion, their funds are deposited into an Uphold card, which is a sort of digital wallet as seen on many other exchanges. This can be a little confusing at first for those who are used to a different method, however, this functionality works much the same way as any other exchange. To view or convert funds, simply click on the asset you wish to convert from, and the asset you wish to convert into. 

Uphold also enables users to send money instantly to their friends and family around the world, with the capability to send by email. This functionality can be accessed in the Uphold wallet, with the entire process being relatively easy to perform. 

Uphold Wallet

Uphold has a variety of different digital wallets available that support different crypto networks. If you have any of the supported currencies, you can easily set up a digital wallet within your Uphold trading account. Each wallet is secured by private key encryption. The process of opening a digital wallet is relatively simple, and can be accessed by clicking on the “Digital Wallets” portion of the Uphold website. 

Some of the cryptocurrencies Uphold supports with this service are as follows:

  • Bitcoin
  • Ripple (XRP)
  • Ethereum
  • Litecoin
  • Bitcoin Cash
  • DASH
  • Bitcoin Gold

Other Features on Uphold

It is without question that Uphold has a large number of different assets for Uphold users to take advantage of. But what about the rest of the exchange? The Uphold exchange has a number of other features and financial services built into its platform to accommodate a large number of users’ needs. Take a moment to read about some of the extra features found on this crypto exchange, as these features may help you to decide if Uphold is the right exchange for you. 

Uphold Debit Card

Is having a debit card to be able to spend your assets an important feature for you to have? You’re in luck because the exchange does offer an Uphold Debit Card, furthering Uphold’s utility with functional payment services that can be used in daily life. The debit card is accepted on any point-of-sale service that supports MasterCard. By swiping the card or entering the debit card information into an online retailer, you can send money instantly for your purchases. To top it all off, Uphold gives both a physical card as well as a digital card. 

The debit card is able to support currencies such as fiat currencies, as well as cryptocurrencies, stock, and metals purchased on the exchange. Uphold Debit Card users can take advantage of an incentivized rewards program, offering 1% back on all purchases made with fiat funds, and 2% for every purchase made with cryptocurrencies. Fiat can be easily transferred to Uphold via a bank account transfer from linked bank accounts. Additionally, there are no foreign transaction fees associated with using the card.

As of now, the debit card is only available in the U.S., with plans for other jurisdictions in the near future. Currently, Uphold supports over 20 different fiat currencies, with some of the major currencies including:

  • USD
  • Euro
  • GBP
  • Chinese Yuan

Uphold Card

Limit Orders

If you are a trader that has a good idea of price movement, and would like to capitalize on your technical analysis, Uphold offers a Limit Order service. In this feature, Uphold users can place up to 50 different limit orders that will execute when the price reaches the desired price level. No orders will execute until the price parameters (as set by the Uphold user) are reached. This can be a great way to take advantage of the financial condition of various markets.

Uphold Limit

Automated Trading

Uphold enables users to place regularly scheduled orders with their AutoPilot automated trading service. For those that utilize a cost-averaging investment strategy, the AutoPilot service is ideal. This financial service can be applied to all of the various markets currently offered on Uphold (crypto, stocks, precious metals). 

Uphold Auto

Uphold Mobile App

For those that enjoy having access to their trading account on their phone, Uphold provides a fully functional mobile app. The Uphold mobile app is available for both Android and Apple devices, and features all of the capabilities found on the Uphold website. This means that you can manage your Uphold wallet, fund your account with a bank transfer, initiate buy and sell orders, send money, and more. The Uphold app can be downloaded from Google Play and the Apple store. 

Uphold Mobile

Uphold Fees

The Uphold platform is also unique in the fact that the trading platform utilizes a Spread Fee, rather than a set fee schedule. This means that the trading fees will largely depend on the conditions of the various crypto networks as well as the stock and precious metals markets. However, it should be noted that there are never any hidden trading fees, and the price that the user sees when executing their orders will automatically include the trading fee. It should be noted that the fees do differ between a personal account and a business account.

Personal Account Fees

These are the fees associated with the various markets offered on the Uphold exchange. It is especially important to pay attention to the fees, as your location could prompt higher trading fees. Despite the fact that there are no hidden fees, trading fees can quickly eat up profits (no matter what exchange you may decide to use).

The various trading fees on a personal account are as follows:

  • Cryptocurrency: 0.8% to 1.2% for users in the U.S. and Europe; 1.8% average for those outside of the U.S. and Europe
  • Precious Metals: 3% + supplier’s bid/ask price
  • Fiat Currencies: 0.2% for major national currencies
  • Stocks: 1% plus any additional fees based on volatility
  • No deposit fees
  • No withdrawal fees
  • Zero custody fees
  • There will be associated fees depending on the financial condition of a crypto network if withdrawing to an external wallet

Business Account Fees

As business accounts are tailored to institutional users, the fees differ slightly from that of a personal account. The Uphold fees with this type of account are as follows:

  • No deposit fees unless funding via credit/debit card or China Union Pay, which carries a 3.99% fee
  • Zero custody fees
  • No fees for accounts that wish to send money
  • Automatic currency conversion incurs an average of a 0.75% fee
  • Withdrawal fees for crypto to an external location incur a $2.99 fee, while a withdrawal via bank transfer to a bank account incurs a $3.99 fee (not including any additional 3rd party fees)

Additionally, when using this type of account, each type of asset carries its own unique fee. The fee averages are as follows:

Uphold Fees

Is Uphold Safe?

Uphold has a number of different security measures in place to act as a safeguard against any malicious attacks and or bad actors. The crypto exchange monitors the activity on its platform 24 hours a day. It has also been reported that each employee undergoes an in-depth background check, and is expected to comply with a set standard of security measures when they are working. A bug bounty program is also incorporated to incentivize users to report any issues they may come across.

Similar to other cryptocurrency exchanges, Uphold allows users to utilize Two-Factor Authentication on their accounts. This acts as a method of defense by using a 3rd party application to broadcast a unique identifier code every 30 seconds. This code will then be required at account logins and when the user wishes to withdraw funds.

Customer Service Team & Helpful Resources

The Uphold website has a number of different resources available to help customers with the various features on the platform. One such resource is the FAQ section, which includes a vast number of different articles relating to the different functions the user will find on the Uphold platform. However, if the user cannot find the answers they are looking for, the exchange has provided contact information for the customer service team, which will promptly reply to your inquiry with a solution.

Uphold FAQ

For those that are unfamiliar with the jargon found within the cryptocurrency space, Uphold has provided a Cryptionary. This resource is an in-depth dictionary with definitions given on many of the unique words found within the space. 

Uphold Cryptionary

Uphold also has an active blog that can be found on the website. This blog regularly publishes articles on many topics, including the history of certain tokens, market sentiment, as well as exchange-wide announcements such as new coin listings and scheduled maintenance. The blog is an excellent resource to stay informed with all of the happenings on the Uphold exchange.

Uphold Blog

Opening an Uphold Account

The process of opening an Uphold account is very simple. To begin, click on the “Sign Up” button found on the exchange website. From here, Uphold will provide information boxes to input personal information, such as an email address, password, country of residence, and citizenship. After the information is provided, Uphold will send an email to verify the account creation. 

Once the signup process is completed, the new user will need to provide further detailed personal information to comply with AML/KYC laws and complete the verification process, as Uphold is a fully regulated exchange. Once this process is completed, the new user is free to add linked bank accounts and fund their accounts via bank transfer or any other preferred method.

Uphold Register

Business Account Creation

If you are interested in creating an institutional account with Uphold, the signup process of creating an account is exactly the same as a personal account. After clicking the “Sign Up” button, Uphold gives the option to create a personal account or an institutional account. Simply press “Business” and complete the forms as necessary. From here, the process to completing the process is exactly the same as a personal account, as you will need to provide proper documentation to complete the verification process and comply with AML/KYC laws.

Uphold Review Conclusion

Uphold has been building a solid reputation as a financial institution since 2015, with the exchange expanding its offerings far beyond cryptocurrency. The exchange is definitely tailored to those who want a simple process without having to worry about price fluctuations, though the exchange does have options for those who wish to trade at certain price points. Overall, this exchange is likely best suited for beginners and newcomers to the investment world, who wish to take part in investing in a large number of different assets without having to worry about using different platforms.

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Alex Halstedt

Since 2012, Alex Hastedt has been fully immersed in the world of cryptocurrency. Since then, he’s continually educated himself on the latest developments within the crypto space. With over 3 years of formal business education, as well as over 5 years of trading experience (with over 400 hours of education), Alex commits to providing honest assessments of cryptocurrency projects and exchanges. It has become a personal mission of his to help educate those who may be new to the space, that they may not fall prey to poor decision making and other potential pitfalls he has witnessed others experience.

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