Established in May 2012, Bitonic is the oldest Bitcoin exchange in the Netherlands and specializes in Bitcoin-transacted purchases through its iDEAL and Bancontact divisions.
For its part, Bitonic.nl is itself a consultancy and cryptocurrency news service that also runs BL3P, a major European cryptocurrency exchange.
Bitonic is not only one of the oldest and most well-established cryptocurrency companies in the world but also works in partnership with the Dutch government to seize and store cryptocurrency used for illicit transactions.
The name Bitonic itself comes from an anagram of Bitcoin.
At present, Bitonic mainly focuses on the buying and selling of Bitcoins through the medium of the Euro fiat currency. As the leading cryptocurrency exchange in the Netherlands, Bitonic has a lot of traction in the wider European trading community but differs from other exchanges in that it does not hold coins for the user, relying upon the purchaser to instead transfer their cryptocurrency into a digital wallet or other location.
Initially developed as an easier online way to purchase Bitcoins in Europe, Bitonic’s pioneering efforts are now quite copied throughout the industry and the company hasn’t kept up in others. One area that is glaringly disappointing for Bitonic is its lack of an app as of press. Most exchanges have some kind of iOS or Android app support but Bitonic has eschewed this approach entirely, a curious move for a company known for its forward-thinking ways.
That said, for customers in the Netherlands, Bitonic is a premier service and a go-to company. Outside of that, though, the company’s services might not meet every consumers needs.
Why Bitonic Exchange?
In this article we’re going to give you a general overview of Bitonic as well as a review of it as a service. We will talk about everything from security to ease of use to methods of payment.
Not only that but we’ll also talk about some of the powerful educational information on offer at Bitonic and how this can help give beginning traders a great idea of what to do in trading crypto.
First, one of the biggest advantages of Bitonic is that it is beginner friendly and offers users a ton of information to help them get started. It doesn’t exactly hold your hand but it does empower the average user to learn about the process of buying and selling cryptocurrency.
What Bitonic lacks in convenience services it tries to make up for through its established community and brand name.
These two aspects aren’t to be discounted as Bitonic is not only a stalwart of the segment but also a trusted name. Users wary of opening an account really need not be when it comes to Bitonic, its security and long-lived presence being only two reasons.
The third reason Bitonic is safe for beginners and others is that it does not provide a digital wallet within its service.
You have to transfer the cryptocurrency to a digital wallet or somewhere else. The disadvantage of this is that, for beginners, this can seem like a daunting and complicated process. Depending on how much you’ve spent, there might be a little tension about how much money you could or could not lose if you screw it up.
Luckily, Bitonic makes the process simple and easy to understand. Where the advantage to Bitonic comes in to play, and the user as well, is that, because they do not hold the cryptocurrency for you, they won’t be hacked and your account end up drained of its assets as has happened with other exchanges.
This is a huge deal and one not to be overlooked. Even the most sophisticated security is at risk to these kinds of heists and Bitonic has largely eliminated this problem from a user standpoint but making the bearer put the coins into a digital wallet.
For European users, Bitonic is an established company that users can trust. It provides an easy to understand interface as well as educational materials to help traders to learn more about cryptocurrency.
It accepts several proprietary methods of payment, the aforementioned MyBank, Bancontact, and iDEAL, but does not allow users to use their own bank account, credit or debit card, or even Paypal in what some may see as a glaring oversight. Security is not a problem typically at Bitonic for the reasons outlined above and the user reviews are largely positive.
Disadvantages of Bitonic
In terms of the disadvantages to Bitonic, outside of those already listed, the list is not overly large but some of the caveats could be deal breaks - especially for sophisticated cryptocurrency buyers.
The biggest is that, if you live outside of the European Union, Bitonic is not for you. No questions asked and no exceptions allowed.
Not only that, but the number of cryptocurrencies support by the Bitonic exchange is markedly fewer than its competition within the EU. If you’re looking to purchase Bitcoin, Bitonic is a great place to be but, if you need something else, its disadvantages begin to show. Don’t even get us started on alt coin support (there isn’t any).
Understandably, since the exchange is based in the Netherlands and only allows people within the EU to use its services, the only fiat currency available for exchange is the Euro. There’s really nothing wrong with that, but where Bitonic shoots itself in the foot somewhat is in its reliance upon proprietary payment systems to transfer that Euro over to your account on Bitonic.
Lack of support for Visa or Mastercard is quite interesting, but the inability to use Paypal or Payoneer and other services like that is questionable. Indeed, isn’t much of the revolution about keeping everything digital? Why make users jump through the hoops of putting cash into one service to have it transfer over to Bitonic?
From a user standpoint it makes no sense but from the standpoint of support Bitonic’s related companies it is perfectly logical. And that leads us to the biggest problem reported by people with Bitonic: lack of transparency regarding fees.
As anyone can tell you, fees can quickly eat up the gain in any cryptocurrency exchange and Bitonic is less than clear about its fee structure. This means that buyers really need to pay attention to what they’re doing which undermines the bend towards encouraging novice traders to sign up.
Conclusion - Bitonic Review
In sum, Bitonic is a solid exchange with a long history in the Bitcoin community. Outside of the EU and Bitcoin, the exchange doesn’t really offer much to its users. New traders will find a lot to like about Bitonic but nothing unique that isn’t done elsewhere. Where many people will become frustrated is the lack of a digital wallet and the convoluted payment system.
A great option for residents of the EU that want to get their feet wet with trading, Bitonic is probably not well suited to advanced traders or those who want a little more hand-holding than it is willing to provide.