Buying Bitcoin and Ether
If you are located in the U.S. the Softspoon recommendation is to use Coinbase. They have an intuitive interface and easy account set-up.
After set-up you should see a dashboard like this:
Buying Ether is as easy as buying Bitcoin. You have to link a bank account which takes a few days, however you can also add a credit card to buy more quickly.
After you get your Bitcoin or Ether, you may want to buy different Ethereum-based tokens (From our index, perhaps?)
Our current recommendation for buying other tokens is to use Kraken, Poloniex, or Bitfinex. These exchanges have the highest amount of volume, according to CoinMarketCap. (Note: if you are buying the ICN token, it is only available on Kraken.)
Personally, I find the Poloniex exchange to have the friendliest interface:
One thing to note is that you will have to deposit either ETH (Ether) or BTC (Bitcoin) in order to trade.
Once you have set up your accounts you are going to want to make use of 2FA or two-factor authentication. This will make your account an order of magnitude more secure. Industry-standard for 2FA are Google Authenticator or Authy. Both are free and easy to use.
Read this article from Coinbase and apply it to all of your accounts, not just Coinbase.
Exchanges are notoriously bad places to store your Cryptocurrency (see: Mt. Gox). Even if your tokens aren’t stolen, you may have some of them taken by the exchange. This happened earlier this year on Bitfinex, losses were ‘socialized’ and every users took a hit.
Jaxx – This is a trusted wallet which can be downloaded to your mobile device for local storage.
Mist – This is the wallet released by the Ethereum Foundation. I’m not including a direct link to the download but rather to the site because it is important to understand the risks associated with this wallet.
myetherwallet – This is a wallet that you can run in Chrome or download and print off. Although I have not heard anything negative about this wallet I would be careful about storing large amounts on it.
If you are reading this as a complete beginner, be sure to do your own research. Reddit is a good place to start. Crypto-currency is like the wild west in terms of security, you provide your own.
If you live outside of the U.S. and would like us to write a post that pertains to you, comment below and we’ll be sure to publish one soon.
Also, if you have any questions, comment below or email us and we’ll try to help out.
If you live in a city, try to go to an Ethereum meetup.