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While editing the Bitcoin Newb Guide, I realized I can't find a single page that covers all major clients in a Newb-friendly manner.

  1. bitcoin.org doesn't seem to mention web wallets such as My Wallet
  2. The wiki page is not IMO newb-friendly ... one big table, no clear way for a newb to decide which wallets he should try out. Yes, the features are listed in the table, but a newb won't understand them.

What is the best objective resource to help newbs choose their first wallet/s?

Requirements:

  • Objective source (as much as possible)
  • Updated Frequently, preferably user editable / reflects user votes
  • Includes major desktop clients
  • Includes major web wallets / mobile wallets
  • Noob Friendly - just dumping all clients in a big table will scare off noobs. I want a page that, while giving out sufficient information, is well structured and will not scare noobs. The Wiki Page is a good counter example.
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"Just use blockchan's mywallet" is the best guide IMHO –  Lohoris Jan 7 '13 at 11:49
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I'm new to bitcoin, but I just opened an account with coinbase.com to get started. –  chovy Jan 9 '13 at 6:54
    
@Lohoris: no, blockchain.info's web wallet works OK, but their wallet apps (both Android and iOS) are a disaster. Highly NOT recommended for beginners, it will only frustrate them. –  Madzi Konjo yesterday
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And and do note the distinction between "the blockchain" (an important part of the Bitcoin technology) and "blockchain.info" which is an independant 3rd party website offering some Bitcoin-related utilities and services. Big difference. –  Madzi Konjo yesterday
    
@MadziKonjo I've had a few beginner friends using them successfully, no problem. No clue why you claim they are a disaster. They can be improved a lot, surely, but disaster is another planet. –  Lohoris yesterday

4 Answers 4

up vote 9 down vote accepted
+100

Essentially it boils down to the tradeoffs between security and convenience.

Instawallet is incredibly convenient, but not all that secure (as no password is required, and if you lose the URL, you lose the ability to spend the funds.)

Paytunia was a great shared (hosted) EWallet for a beginner, and there is a mobile app (for Android). A new version of Paytunia is in the works for a 2014 release.

Blockchain.info/wallet is a great hybrid (browser-based) wallet and also has a mobile app (for Android, and for Cydia / jailbroken iPhones). Configured properly, with backups sent to your e-mail inbox, this is probably the best combination of security and convenience.

If you only need a mobile wallet, the BitcoinSpinner works well also.

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This chart comparing all major desktop clients is pretty good, and is well maintained by a bitcointalk regular: http://dre.natverk.org/compare.htm

Discussion about it here: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=83768.0

Nothing about e-wallets, though.

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Personally I would recommend Electrum, it's a local wallet, doesn't require you to download the entire blockchain, has good features with regards to recoverability and accessibility. Also you can run it in multiple locations at the same time (something the standard bitcoin wallet doesn't allow you to do), and you can also run it on your phone provided it's not an iPhone.

Other than this blockchain.com provide a good online wallet although I'm always cautious of these as you have to trust the company running the wallet not to make off with your coins. One place I would definitely suggest not leaving them is in exchange wallets, at least no more than you can afford to loose, and for when you make your cryptographic millions Cold Storage.

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Running Electrum on a phone, you sure? Is there an Android or WindowsPhone version of Electrum? –  Madzi Konjo 17 hours ago

Copied from How to get started with a Bitcoin wallet:

I'd recommend to read up on Bitcoin to understand what you're doing. Then you can find an overview of wallets on bitcoin.org, but for a quick start, the fastest way to get started is:

These are all fairly easy to use, and don't bother you with all kinds of advanced options.

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