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Introduction

Uphold is a cryptocurrency platform that offers a comprehensive range of financial products and services. It allows users to purchase, sell, or trade cryptocurrencies as well as other assets.

Uphold is transparent about its fees. Its fee structure is slightly different from those of many other crypto exchanges. There are no commissions, deposit fees, or maker-taker fees. Instead, there are spread fees, which are basically small premiums you'll pay over the true market price (and are how Uphold makes money). With these spread fees, you might end up paying a higher price than what you might see from competitors. Overall, it could be a good choice for those looking to invest across different asset classes under one platform. 

Company Overview

Founded in 2015, Uphold is an established crypto exchange that serves users in 180 countries.

Uphold offers a unique financial experience that sets it apart from other crypto exchanges. In addition to giving users the option to buy cryptocurrency, users can also purchase precious metals. The platform also allows you to trade across currencies, without taking the extra step of converting your assets back to cash. 

In addition to a unique trading experience, Uphold offers a cash-back debit card that allows customers to make payments with assets they hold on the platform. For instance, a user might choose to pay with crypto or fiat currency. 

Uphold supports close to 250 cryptocurrencies, including Litecoin, Bitcoin, and Stellar Lumens. The company, headquartered in New York, currently has over 10 million users and over $1.5 billion in its current financial reserve.

Pros Explained

  • Ability to buy and trade across asset classes: Users can purchase cryptocurrency and precious metals on Uphold.
  • Transparent fee structure: Uphold offers a transparent fee structure, so users won’t get caught off guard by unexpected costs.

Cons Explained

  • Limited number of cryptocurrencies: While Uphold supports more than 250 cryptocurrencies. Other leading exchanges offer more supported assets.
  • No advanced trading features: Uphold lacks advanced charting and other features aimed at professional and active traders, which some exchanges provide.

On Jan. 18, 2023, Uphold warned its users of a possible data breach in a compromised email address incident at a third-party firm, Customer.io. The firm also introduced a new Uphold card to the U.K. market. Following allegations by crypto lender Cred LLC that several protocols, including Uphold, owed its liquidation trust over $784 million, Uphold has since denied the accusations, filing a motion to dismiss Cred LLC's suit.

Cryptocurrencies Available on Uphold

Currently, Uphold offers over 250 currencies for users to buy, sell, and trade on its platform. Available cryptocurrencies include:

  • Bitcoin (BTC)
  • Ethereum (ETH)
  • Litecoin (LTC)
  • Ripple (XRP) 
  • Chainlink (LINK)
  • Stellar Lumens (XLM)
  • Iota (MIOTA)

Trade Experience

Uphold offers a user-friendly trading experience, and customers can make trades via its desktop platform or mobile apps, which are available on both Android and iOS. The user interface is intuitive for those who are new to making trades, which could make it a good option for those just getting started with crypto. 

Unlike many competitors, Uphold offers the ability to trade within asset classes, making its platform stand out. Users may also set up recurring purchases using Uphold’s AutoPilot option, which uses dollar-cost averaging to help mitigate some of the volatility of trading in the cryptocurrency market. However, this platform only offers one order type: limit orders. Those looking for additional or more advanced order types will want to look elsewhere. Furthermore, the platform doesn't have advanced charting and other features that some traders often desire.

Fees 

Though Uphold offers 0% trading commissions, it charges spread fees for cryptocurrency purchases and sales that customers make on the platform. These spread fees are relatively high. They can range from 1.5% to 1.8% for popular cryptocurrencies and even go beyond this range for lower-liquidity cryptocurrencies. Uphold also indicates that spread fees may increase during times of market volatility.

There are no withdrawal or deposit fees for personal accounts. However, crypto network fees might apply when withdrawing to an external wallet the same as they would with any provider.

Though they of course can change with market conditions, Uphold charges the following spread fees for other asset classes:

Action Fee 
Fiat currencies  0.2% spread fee 
Metals  2% spread fee

Security 

Uphold offers industry-standard security measures, including KYC verification and two-factor authentication. The majority of user funds are held offline in cold storage, which is generally more secure than storing funds online in hot wallets. This company also provides users with basic guidance on security best practices and how to recognize and avoid scams. 

In addition, Uphold employs a bug bounty program through Intigriti, a third-party security company. Through this program, users can report bugs they’ve encountered when using Uphold. 

Uphold staff members are also required to undergo background checks and participate in routine privacy training to help promote platform security. 

Opening an Uphold Account 

Signing up for an Uphold account is simple. To start, click on the Sign Up button in the upper right-hand corner of the Uphold website. From there, you’ll provide the following information during the initial sign-up process: email address, password, country of residence, and nationality. After that, further information is required to verify your identity, including uploading a government ID.

When you’ve submitted your information and read Uphold’s terms of service, you’ll receive a verification email. After you’ve verified your email address, you can begin using your account.

Customer Service

Uphold doesn’t offer many options for customer service. Users can access a live chat function via the Uphold app. In addition, users can request help via a form on the Uphold website or reach out to the company through its X (formerly Twitter) account.

Customer Satisfaction 

Overall, Uphold receives poor marks from customers. Multiple users mention issues related to communication and account lockouts as well as delays in authenticating profiles. 

Despite a large amount of negative feedback, some reviews of Uphold are positive. Users who praise this exchange mention that they appreciate its product offerings and the overall simplicity of the platform.

Account Management

Uphold users can access their accounts via the company's website or its mobile apps. When logged in, you can use the online dashboard or mobile app to buy, sell, and trade assets, review your portfolio, and more. However, given that Uphold offers few options for customer support, users will likely be mostly on their own when it comes to managing their accounts.

Final Verdict

Despite its wide selection of cryptocurrencies and advanced security features, Uphold receives poor reviews from customers. Problems with customer service and account lockouts make it a challenging platform for some users. 

That said, Uphold’s unique features, such as multi-asset trading, may make it an attractive platform to certain users. However, it’s a good idea to research different crypto exchanges and compare options before you sign up.

Methodology 

Investopedia is dedicated to helping those interested in cryptocurrency investing make informed and safe decisions. We are committed to providing our readers with unbiased reviews of the top cryptocurrency exchanges for investors of all levels.

Exchanges were reviewed on points including security, fees, number of cryptocurrencies available, and more. We also considered if the exchange is regulated by a proper agency or entirely decentralized. Our full cryptocurrency exchange methodology, including its review process and weighted data points, is available for review.

The comments, opinions, and analyses expressed on Investopedia are for informational purposes online. Read our warranty and liability disclaimer for more info.

Sources


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