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Gemini vs. Coinbase: Everything You Need To Know

12 mins
Fact Checked
by Ish Bautista
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Gemini and Coinbase are two of the most well-known exchanges for buying and selling cryptocurrencies. This comparative guide looks at Gemini vs. Coinbase and examines the key differences between the two platforms, including their features, fees, coins listed, security, mobile apps, and more. 

Our methodology for choosing the best crypto exchange

What is Coinbase?

coinbase review neutral blue binoculars

Since 2012, Coinbase has established itself as an ideal entry point for first-time cryptocurrency traders. Now operating exchanges across 100+ countries, Coinbase makes crypto purchases easy using local payment methods. They support 100+ coins rivaling top global exchanges.


Here, we explore the key features that define the Coinbase platform, along with its pros and cons:

  • Lists over 100 cryptocurrencies
  • Accessible in 100+ countries
  • User-friendly design for crypto newbies
  • Extensive trading options on Coinbase Pro
  • Supports staking  


  • Beginner-friendly web and app onboarding into crypto
  • Regulatory compliance brings institutional trust
  • Demonstrated security record protects against breaches
  • Wide assortment of educational content resources
  • High liquidity makes filling large buys/sells easy


  • High fees from conversion spreads and wire transfers
  • Hidden costs easily inflate pricing
  • Occasional customer support delays
  • The number of features can overwhelm newcomers
  • Unclear pricing structure

What is Gemini?

gemini crypto exchange web3 arrow blue

Gemini is a leading regulated US cryptocurrency exchange launched in 2014 by Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss. It offers an intuitive platform for buying, selling, and storing digital assets. Moreover, Gemini supports more than 60 coins. 

Let’s explore the key capabilities of the Gemini cryptocurrency exchange, along with its advantages and disadvantages. The exchange:

  • List over 60 cryptocurrencies
  • Available in 49 U.S. states and 59+ countries
  • Beginner and advanced trading interfaces
  • Has institutional-grade security
  • Insured custody wallets
  • Charges low trading fees
  • Supports staking


  • Uses top-tier exchange security protocols
  • Has direct oversight as a licensed New York trust company
  • Has smooth web and mobile interfaces
  • Deep liquidity ensures the best price execution
  • A low-priced and transparent transaction fee structure


  • Limited payment methods
  • Fewer supported cryptocurrencies than competitors
  • Limited educational resources
  • Lengthy account approval process delays trading
  • Geo-restricted from Hawaii and select countries


Both exchanges offer accessible on-ramps for new crypto investors, including low account minimums and funding options. 

Coinbase currently supports over 100 cryptocurrencies compared to Gemini’s 60. For altcoin traders, Coinbase has a broader range of supported coins and tokens. The company also offers Coinbase Pro, which is a subscription with deeper liquidity tailored to active investors. Meanwhile, Gemini offers richer yield opportunities.

Ultimately, the platforms overlap strongly on core features but diverge based on niche specialties. Coinbase offers a user-friendly experience for beginners, providing access to a wide range of cryptocurrencies and high liquidity. On the other hand, Gemini stands out for its comprehensive selection of advanced trading tools and features tailored to meet the needs of more experienced traders.

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Ultimate comparison

The Gemini exchange has a longer sign-up process and account approval timing than Coinbase. Users must first provide personal information, including their name, birthdate, address, and Social Security number. The Know Your Customer (KYC) verification process can take up to five business days. This ensures better consumer protection but comes at the cost of accessibility and convenience.  

In contrast, Coinbase offers immediate account setup. Users can instantly trade up to $25,000 daily after providing basic personal information. Full KYC kicks in for higher volumes but is still faster than Gemini.

Gemini vs. Coinbase: User interface

Coinbase provides a simple, intuitive trading user interface ideal for beginners. Customizable dashboards permit simple order entry across markets, and the Coinbase mobile app almost identically mirrors the desktop experience. By comparison, Gemini’s desktop interface shows some dated elements next to Coinbase’s more modern styling. But Gemini also unveiled a redesigned mobile app with modern aesthetics and smooth performance. 

For usability, Coinbase rates higher thanks to its responsive web design and seamless mobile syncing. Gemini comes in second on the desktop but redeems itself through its revamped mobile platform.

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Mobile apps  

Both cryptocurrency exchanges support iOS and Android applications. This way, you can use your mobile app to quickly check balances, execute trades on the go, deposit/withdraw, and more.

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Supported currencies

Another point of departure is in their supported cryptocurrencies. Gemini supports over 60 coins, including popular choices like Bitcoin, Ether, and Litecoin. The platform also supports smaller cap coins, including Filecoin, Livepeer, and Skale, and has recently added DeFi tokens.  

In comparison, Coinbase supports over 150 crypto assets by aggregating assets listed on Coinbase Pro, Prime, and Custody. The crypto exchange lists top coins like BTC, ETH, and BNB alongside emerging metaverse and altcoin picks. However, many smaller market cap assets don’t make the cut.

Coinbase is preferable for variety of low and high-cap coins, from crypto mainstays to cutting-edge DeFi picks, while Gemini limits selection to popular coins focused on decentralization.

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Security and hacks

Both crypto exchanges emphasize regulatory compliance, implementing robust security features to safeguard client assets. These include cold storage mechanisms along with standard measures like two-factor authentication.

Additionally, both platforms carry private insurance policies covering a portion of holdings. The Gemini exchange insures up to $200 million, while Coinbase covers $255 million. Gemini also completed a System and Organization Controls (SOC) 2 Type 2 audit affirming security protocols.


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Ultimately, the companies exhibit similar security features. Neither exchange has ever suffered a successful breach, resulting in client fund losses.

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Trading fees

The two exchanges have different approaches to their day trading fee schedules. Gemini fees employ a maker-taker model based on 30-day trading volume. The platform’s spot trading fees range from 0.35%  to 0.1%. It also doesn’t charge deposit or withdrawal fees and allows users ten free crypto withdrawals per month.

Makers earn rebates between 0.1% and 0.35% for providing liquidity on Gemini by adding volume to order books. Conversely, takers pay fees up to 0.35% when taking liquidity from the order book via market orders. Active traders see decreasing fees to 0.1% based on 30-day volume thresholds surpassing $50 million.

On its part, Coinbase defaults to wider spreads of ~0.50% per trade. The exchange offers a scaled maker-taker model similar to Gemini through its Pro platform. Here, Coinbase fees start at 0.15%, reducing to 0.1% under volume tiers. Additionally, the exchange lets users convert crypto for free between supported wallets.

Basic Coinbase trades incur ~0.50% in spread cost, separating the quoted ask/bid price from market rates. Meanwhile, Gemini publishes its fee schedule openly, charging makers or takers between 0.1% and 0.35%.

To get lower fees, Coinbase customers can use Coinbase Pro, which has a maker/taker model similar to Gemini’s, with rates capped at 0.1%. However, Pro features more complex order types and interfaces that are less friendly toward casual traders.

In summary, Gemini baseline rates are lower than on Coinbase without requiring platform upgrades. But Coinbase does allow potentially lower charges under Pro, albeit with added conditions. Considering overall ease and transparency, Gemini wins for a simpler and easy-to-understand fee structure. 

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Educational rewards

One aspect that sets Coinbase apart is its educational content and incentives rewarding learning. Users can browse beginner-friendly guides explaining crypto concepts and watch videos to earn crypto.

Gemini lacks such intuitive, engaging educational tools to guide newcomers. Instead, it provides research reports like the State of U.S. Crypto report. However, no incentives encourage customers to increase their crypto comprehension on the platform. Coinbase has the edge here.

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Ease of use

Gemini has a lengthy sign-up process, a more advanced user interface, and a focus on active trading options. It mostly appeals to advanced cryptocurrency users. They also have less educational content to help their traders. 

Conversely, Coinbase simplifies understanding and navigating the crypto landscape through guides, videos, and portfolio-tracking resources. Its clean layouts, rich data visualizations, and simplified order forms further enhance its ease of use on the website and mobile app. If you want an intuitive on-ramp to crypto, Coinbase wins for usability.

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Fiat currency support

Gemini allows funding accounts using seven fiat currencies. These include the U.S. dollar, the Canadian dollar, the British pound, and the Australian dollar. Others are the euro, the Singaporean dollar, and the Hong Kong dollar. This limits customers’ diversity in managing balances. 

Meanwhile, Coinbase’s fiat currency support covers over 60 distinct fiat currencies, including the seven that Gemini does. So, for non-U.S.-based cryptocurrency investors, Coinbase caters to more localized funding options, making it a more inclusive platform.

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Access

Signing up for either exchange is reasonably quick, following basic identity verification steps. This grants access to essential trading and account management functionality using the website or mobile applications.

Both also impose trading limits that progressively lift through submitting additional documentation. A fully verified status removes barriers to more active traders needing elevated permission. The user journey is almost identical across different access levels.

Buying and selling cryptocurrencies

“We’re starting to see more and more institutions that are establishing the ability to buy or sell cryptocurrencies on their platform.”

Matthew Schwartz, advisor at Great Waters Financial: MarketWatchPicks

Users first deposit fiat currency like USD to buy and sell crypto on Gemini. They then input transaction details specifying order type, volume, and price, enabling trading options like stop limits. Trades execute quickly through Gemini’s order book, linking buyers and sellers.  

Coinbase, on its part, streamlines buying crypto into three easy steps: Choose the asset and amount, link the payment method, and execute the order. Selling follows the same order. Users can configure additional order types like limits and stoplosses as they like. Out of both exchanges, Coinbase offers a more straightforward user experience for newbies and advanced users alike.

Geographic availability

Both companies are headquartered in the United States, serving customers nationwide. However, their international access differs. Gemini conducts business in over 60 countries globally. Meanwhile, Coinbase has managed full or partial launches in over 100 countries worldwide.

Staking and rewards

Gemini offers staking rewards on three coins, including Ethereum (ETH), Matic (MATIC), and Solana (SOL). Crypto investors can earn APYs of 2.54%, 1.79%, and 3.66%, respectively, for these coins.

Similarly, Coinbase supports 15 coins for staking, like ETH, Tezos (XTZ), and Cosmos (ATOM). Investors can use Coinbase Earn for yields of 3.85% for their staked ETH and up to 10% on other crypto assets.

Staking on Coinbase

Crypto exchange & lending platform
Earn up to
10% APY
Stakable assets
Funding methods
Crypto, wire transfer, debit card

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Customer support

Both exchanges provide customer assistance through email ticketing. That’s besides detailed site FAQs and resource-rich support centers. Average response times run 24-72 hours, barring critical issues. Additionally, they have active social media profiles for fielding inquiries.

Between the two, Gemini historically faced greater criticism regarding support backlogs. But bolstered staffing cut resolution times to under an hour for many requests. Ultimately, effective customer support comes down to inquiry type more than the exchange itself. For support inquiries, Coinbase rates better on speed.

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Cryptocurrency storage

Alongside exchange services, Gemini provides the Gemini wallet app for personal cryptocurrency storage. Users fully control assets on the non-custodial wallet, which carries some inherent risks. Coinbase similarly lets users self-manage crypto holdings directly on mobile. Moreover, one can link to a Coinbase Exchange account.  

Gemini vs. Coinbase: Other features

Beyond core buying/selling functionality, the platforms offer extra features to suit broader investing demands.  

NFT support

Both exchanges support NFT marketplaces that facilitate discovering and showcasing digital collectibles and NFT peer-to-peer (P2P) trading. Gemini does so through its Nifty Gateway, while Coinbase uses its in-house NFT marketplace.

Hardware wallet integration

For ultra-secure offline asset storage, Gemini supports hardware wallet integration through WebAuthn. Coinbase also supports the integration of Ledger wallets. These tools give users freedom over their funds and provide an extra layer of protection compared to hot wallets.

Token swaps

A built-in swap feature on Coinbase allows the convenient exchanging of one crypto asset for another without converting it into fiat currency. Gemini lacks native token swap capabilities.

What are some alternatives to Gemini and Coinbase?

Ideal for demo and spot trading

Ideal for demo and spot trading
Explore OKX on OKX’s official website
Supported assets 300+
Deposit fees 0
Trading fees 0.10%

Trustworthy exchange with complete crypto ecosystem

Trustworthy exchange with complete crypto ecosystem
Explore Binance on Binance’s official website
Supported assets 350+
Deposit fees 0
Trading fees 0,1%

Reputable trading platform for advanced traders

Reputable trading platform for advanced traders
Explore Kraken on Kraken’s official website
Supported assets 220+
Deposit fees 0
Trading fees 0% – 0.26%

Exploring the similarities between Coinbase vs. Gemini

Despite the differences highlighted in this guide, Gemini and Coinbase retain fundamental similarities that underpin leading centralized cryptocurrency exchanges:

Regulatory complianceYesYes
Web + mobile trading interfacesYesYes
Custodial+ private walletsYesYes
New account sign-up bonusYesYes
Robust platform securityYesYes
Insurance of fundsYesYes

The digital duel: Which exchange is better?

In the Gemini vs. Coinbase battle, the choice ultimately depends on individual preferences and priorities. Gemini excels in security and compliance, making it an ideal choice for users prioritizing these aspects. On the other hand, Coinbase’s user-friendly design, extensive coin offerings, and global accessibility make it a favorite for a broader audience. 

When choosing between the two, consider your trading goals, geographic location, and specific feature requirements when deciding between these two prominent cryptocurrency exchanges. While the two platforms are similar in many ways, we found nuances that differentiate them. Coinbase emerged as beginner-friendly due to its simple interface and exhaustive educational materials. Conversely, Gemini provides advanced charting and data visualizations, features that appeal to pro traders. 

Frequently asked questions

Is Gemini in trouble?

Is my money safe in Gemini?

Is Gemini a safe place to buy Bitcoin?

Is Gemini worth investing in?

Are there mobile apps for Gemini and Coinbase?

Which one is better: Gemini or Coinbase?

Is Gemini safer than Binance?

Is Gemini a trusted platform?

Who owns the Gemini platform?

Is Gemini a U.S.-based company?

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Alex Lielacher
Alex Lielacher is the founder & CEO of Rise Up Media, a content marketing agency that works with a range of bitcoin businesses. He first came across bitcoin in 2011 and has worked full-time in the cryptocurrency industry since 2016. Alex started his career in the banking industry in London, working in bond trading and sales. After a little over half a decade, he swapped his seat on the trading floor for a spot in cafés around the world, where he started his career as a freelance...