In 2022, the cheapest way to buy Filecoin (FIL) in the UK is on a popular cryptocurrency exchange like Coinbase (via its Advanced Trade UI) or Kraken.
Alternatively, you can buy Filecoin (FIL) using a credit or debit card via the Crypto.com app. This might be quicker and more convenient, but it works out much more expensive. With this, you’ll pay a fixed fee of 2.99% whenever you buy a cryptocurrency using a card and be quoted an exchange rate that is 1% (or more) higher than the real exchange rate.
Find out more in this quick guide to buying Filecoin (FIL) in the UK.
Intro: Buy Filecoin (FIL) in the UK
So, where are the cheapest places to buy Filecoin (FIL) in the UK?
Check out this table for a quick overview.
|Provider||Payment Method||Trading Fees|
|Kraken||UK Bank Transfer||Up to 0.26%|
|Coinbase (Advanced)||UK Bank Transfer||Up to 0.60%|
|Gemini||UK Bank Transfer||2.00%|
|Crypto.com||Credit & Debit Card||2.99%+|
Let’s dive in.
Best Places to Buy Filecoin (FIL) in the UK
1. Popular Cryptocurrency Exchanges
You can buy Filecoin (FIL) on two of the best cryptocurrency exchanges available to UK residents.
- Coinbase: A familiar name in the crypto-space, Coinbase recently reported that it had more than 43 million users. Epic numbers. You can learn more about it in my Coinbase Review.
- Kraken: Established in 2011, this is one of the longest-running cryptocurrency exchanges. It supports more than 50 cryptocurrencies and has at least 4 million users. You can learn more about it in my Kraken review.
In 2022, each of these exchanges also allows you to deposit GBP into your account for FREE. This has made the process of buying cryptocurrency much simpler and cheaper than it’s ever been before.
To get the lowest fees on Coinbase, you’ll have to toggle the Advanced Trade UI. This isn’t beginner friendly, but unlocks lower fees (max 0.6%) than the standard interface (which, when I’ve checked, is a minimum of 2%).
Here’s what the process should look like:
- If you haven’t already, create a Coinbase account.
- Complete verification to unlock all account features.
- Deposit GBP into your Coinbase GBP wallet with a UK bank transfer.
- Toggle the Advanced Trade UI by selecting ‘Trade’ in the left sidebar, and then ‘Advanced’ at the top of the page once it reloads.
- Buy Filecoin (FIL) on the FIL/GBP market (max 0.6% fees)
- Done! Stand in awe of your beautiful Filecoin (FIL) balance.
Coinbase WebsiteKraken Website
With the Crypto.com app, you’re able to buy, sell and store more than 100 cryptocurrencies – including Filecoin (FIL).
UK residents can deposit GBP into the Crypto.com app with a UK bank transfer. You can then buy Filecoin (FIL) and more than 250 cryptocurrencies with your GBP wallet balance without paying any explicit fees.
If you’d rather use a credit or debit card, then you’ll be charged 2.99% in explicit fees to buy Filecoin (FIL).
Unfortunately, I’ve found that the exchange rate you’re offered within the Crypto.com app isn’t the real exchange rate. I’ve typically found that the prices it’s quoting are about 1% higher than you can find on a cryptocurrency exchange like Binance. This drastically changes how competitive using the app to buy cryptocurrencies like Filecoin (FIL) really is.
Check out my Crypto.com review to learn more (or just explore the Crypto.com app yourself).
What is Filecoin (FIL)?
Filecoin (FIL) is the native token for the Filecoin network. The Filecoin network is a cloud-based decentralised storage network (DSN) designed as an alternative to centralised cloud storage services from companies like Google, Amazon, and Dropbox.
The Filecoin network was first described in a 2014 whitepaper written by Juan Benet of Protocol Labs. Benet and his team at Protocol Labs were also the key developers of the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS), a data storage system similar to the Filecoin network that’s designed to revolutionise the web.
What makes the Filecoin network unique is that it flips the traditional cloud storage model on its head. Instead of relying on and paying a centralised company to manage, store, and protect files, Filecoin users can store their files and data on the decentralised Filecoin network.
Supporters of Filecoin argue that there are a number of benefits to storing your files on this kind of decentralised storage network (DSN).
- Using decentralised cloud storage means that no single entity is responsible for securing your files. This also means that (theoretically) no company or individual can access, delete, withhold, or censure your files without your permission.
- In a centralised storage network, the network’s owner sets storage prices. In a DSN, storage prices are hypercompetitive because they vary based on what users are willing to pay at any given moment.
So where does the FIL token come into the picture?
FIL tokens are an integral part of the Filecoin network because they’re the sole payment method used for file storage. If a user wants to store data on the network, they need to pay the current market rate in FIL tokens to the network’s miners in exchange for access to the available storage space.
Here’s a quick video that explains how the Filecoin network and the FIL token work:
The primary benefit of holding the token is that it lets you access and pay for decentralised data storage on the Filecoin network.
FIL token holders can also stake their tokens to provide liquidity to the Filecoin network in exchange for staking rewards.
But the Filecoin network doesn’t have a traditional staking platform. So if you want to stake your tokens, you usually need to do so through Binance, Kraken, Gemini, Aave, or another similar platform. These platforms pool together staked resources to provide miner collateral to the network in exchange for rewards that they then pass on to you.
Supporters of Filecoin also believe that the FIL token is a good store of long-term value. They argue that the price of a FIL token will increase in the future as more users want to store their files on the network. However, if people opt to use alternative DNS protocols like Siacoin or Storj, for data storage instead, the price of FIL tokens could fall.
Best Filecoin (FIL) Wallets
FIL tokens are not easy to store.
Although the Filecoin network is based on Ethereum, FIL is not an ERC-20 token and there are relatively few wallets that can support it.
There is no native FIL wallet. However, the Filecoin network recommends using Glif Web Wallet in tandem with a Ledger Nano S or Nano X.
Both Ledger devices support FIL tokens, but the Ledger Live interface does not. You can use Glif as a web-based interface to send, receive, and manage the keys to your FIL tokens that are stored on your Ledger wallet.
However, Glif isn’t available as a stand-alone wallet, so you need to pair it with a Ledger device to send or receive FIL tokens.
If you want to use a software wallet instead, there are 2 solid options available:
- Trust Wallet. Created by the team at Binance, Trust Wallet is a non-custodial hot wallet that’s available as a mobile app. It offers support for thousands of cryptoassets including FIL, Bitcoin (BTC), and all BEP-2, BEP-20, and ERC-20 tokens. Trust Wallet also has a built-in decentralised app (DApp) browser, support for NFTs, an integrated decentralised exchange (DEX), and a platform for buying crypto with a credit card.
- Exodus Wallet. A popular multi-currency wallet, Exodus Wallet can manage the private keys to FIL and thousands of other cryptoassets. It’s available as a desktop and mobile app so you can manage your assets with ease. The Exodus wallet interface also has built-in support for a range of DeFi applications, like Compound Finance, to help you stake right from your wallet.
There are a handful of other software wallets, like Cobo, Math Wallet, and imToken that support FIL, too – but these aren’t particularly popular.
Since FIL isn’t widely supported by major wallets, always double-check that any wallet you’re using supports the token before transferring your assets.
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