An Alternative To Shapeshift

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An Alternative To Shapeshift

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Shapeshift is a popular instant cryptocurrency exchange which allows users to trade a variety of cryptocurrencies. As it gained popularity it ended up becoming a victim of its own success, experiencing a rising number of issues and even multiple hacks. Today, Shapeshift has improved its services, yet its reputational damage lingers, with many looking for an alternative to Shapeshift.

Shapeshift: A Closer Look

Founded in 2013 by Erik Voorhees, Shapeshift became one of the most trusted exchanges in the world. The company is based in Switzerland and has users from across the globe. Its primary feature was the fact that you could trade cryptocurrencies without having to create an account or provide any personal details, except your wallet address.

This anonymous function was, understandably, very popular, but it was discontinued in October 2018. Today, you are required to provide a minimum amount of personal information before you can use the exchange.

At first, Shapeshift was known for offering very quick transactions, but as the number of users skyrocketed, transactions began slowing down considerably. This led to a wave of complaints, and to users looking for alternatives to Shapeshift for their trades.

In 2016, the exchange also fell victim to hackers, who, with the help of an employee, managed to steal over $200,000 worth of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin. Although the company’s owner vowed sweeping changes and security enhancements, the exchange found it difficult to fully recover.

Using Changelly Instead

Changelly is a younger exchange than Shapeshift, having been established in 2016 in the Czech Republic. The team behind this exchange previously created MinerGate, a mining pool which also supports crypto miners in a variety of ways. Today, the exchange counts over 1 million users from across the world.

Changelly is an easy-to-use cryptocurrency exchange which allows the trading of Bitcoin and a large number of Altcoins. Apart from the more common currencies, such as Ethereum and Monero, the exchange allows users to trade less popular currencies, including Fantomcoin, Expanse, and Gulden.

Changelly provides users with an estimated exchange rate and time of transaction before the transaction is executed. An estimate is offered due to the potentially high volatility of the cryptocurrency in question. Apart from offering crypto to crypto transactions, the exchange also offers fiat to crypto transactions, which Shapeshift does not. In fact, you can buy Bitcoin and other currencies conveniently using credit or debit cards, in both USD and EUR.


Changelly holds an enviable reputation when it comes to user and funds security. Unlike Shapeshift, the exchange has never been the victim of major successful attacks. Changelly requires basic identification for all of its users and also offers 2-factor authentication (2FA). This basic level of security has certainly contributed to a reduction of potential risks.


Whenever you trade cryptocurrency, Changelly charges a flat 0.5% fee. The actual value of this percentage can vary when you are using fiat currency in this trade, due to currency conversion rates. Nevertheless, the platform has a reputation for honesty and transparency, with many users understanding the volatile market it operates in.

Fees are one area in which Changelly is particularly superior to Shapeshift. A so-called miner fee is charged on every transaction, and Shapeshift is also known to include hidden, or harder to locate fees. 

User Experience

Changelly marks higher than Shapeshift on user experience as well, boasting a massive selection of cryptocurrencies and payment options. Although speed was once an issue for Changelly, it doesn’t seem to be today, based on user feedback, and the exchange continues to develop itself. The exchange does not require a minimum deposit and doesn’t charge any deposit or withdrawal fees.

Other Alternatives

While Changelly is largely considered to be the best alternative to Shapeshift for most users, advanced traders might view it as too simplistic. If you are one such trader, there are a few secondary alternatives which you might be interested in.


CEX is a regulated cryptocurrency exchange, fully licenced to carry out money-based transactions. Being regulated gives the exchange a higher degree of credibility and trustworthiness which both Changelly and Shapeshift cannot offer.

The exchange allows users to store their digital currency directly on the platform, without requiring a separate wallet. This allows for faster and more convenient trading, however some deposit or withdrawal fees may apply.

CEX is particularly popular for its advanced trading products, which include margin trading. The platform offers extensive cryptocurrency analysis, and while its list of supported currencies is limited, it offers very fast transactions and order execution.

One of the primary concerns of any responsible cryptocurrency trader is an exchange’s safety, and here CEX scores very highly. In line with its licences, the exchange requires user verification and implements security best practices from other exchanges and the Fintech industry. CEX is also one of the few exchanges which accept corporate clients to open accounts.


Coinmama is one of the oldest Bitcoin brokers in the world, having been set up in 2013. While the exchange itself is not regulated, it is owned by a company which is registered to carry out money-based transactions. The platform is designed to offer simple crypto trades but does not offer advanced trading products.

Similarly to Changelly and Shapeshift, Coinmama does not provide users with its own exchange wallet. Before using the platform you must, therefore, obtain a separate hot or cold storage wallet. In order to open an account with Coinmama, you need to provide basic identification documents. The exchange has a reputation for processing these documents very quickly.

A significant feature of Coinmama over Changelly is that with Coinmama you are able to lock the crypto rate once you place an order. Coinmama also offers considerably higher limits, which are particularly relevant to more active traders. You can buy cryptocurrency using fiat currency on Coinmama, but crypto to crypto trades are not currently supported. The platform also requires a small minimum deposit.

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