To ChangeNOW or not – that is the question!
Updated: Oct 7, 2020
Cryptocurrency trading is often difficult in my country. A few years back, the central bank had cut the banking support of all local cryptocurrency exchanges. The volume of all native exchanges dried up and I had to shift to the international exchanges. I traded only on centralized exchanges (CEX) at the beginning of my trading career. CEXs were user friendly for a novice trader like me. All of them wanted a thorough registration process and I submitted my passport and bank details to register in so many exchanges. Later on, I came to know that many exchanges kept on getting hacked. I really became worried about my fund and personal financial information submitted to them. One fine morning, I woke up to get the news that Cryptopia, a New Zealand based crypto exchange, was compromised and millions of assets were syphoned. I was holding some fund there and it was a huge shock. Cryptopia finally went bankrupt and till now the liquidation process is going on. I understood that CEXs were not safe. I started exploring decentralized exchanges or DEXs and realised the meaning of the popular crypto proverb “Not your keys, not your coins”. Since that time, I’ve explored quite a few DEXs and held a significant amount of my crypto portfolio in private wallets.
My early experience with instant exchange service
It was not possible for me to avoid CEXs for various reasons. An Ethereum DEX allows you to trade Ethereum and ERC tokens only. You can’t trade XRP or XLM there. Sometimes it is needed to exchange coins of two different blockchains. A DEX doesn’t help in that case. I learnt about exchangers. One of my friends suggested me about a local online instant exchanger some years back. They were doing heavy promotions that time and I was allured by their astonishingly low fees. I wanted to exchange 0.5 ETH to XRP. The deposit process worked very nicely but I got nothing in return. The TAT mentioned in their website was 5-15 minutes for crediting asset post depositing. I waited for a few hours but in vain. After contacting their customer care, they told me to submit KYC as they found something wrong in the transaction. I had no choice and I submitted. They took 2 more days to verify my KYC. Finally, I received my XRP. But alas! The price of XRP already dropped 30% by that time. For an unknown reason, they didn’t calculate ETH to XRP conversion rate shown to me during my deposit time. Was it a dirty trick by them? Possible, but it was a disastrous experience of my life.
Do we need instant exchangers really?
Yes, I hold specific cryptocurrencies in my private wallet but I’m not an eternal hodler. Often I need to exchange my assets. Exchanges are really good for trading purpose but not for exchanging instantly. For example, if you have a Binance account and want to exchange XRP to DASH, you need to sell your XRP in the BTC market and then buy DASH with the BTC. The whole process involves a lot of steps and it is time taking. If you are holding your assets in your private wallet and want the exchanged assets in your private wallet too, then it is more painful as you need to go through deposit and withdrawal process. It is logical to use an exchanger service instead of exchanges sometimes. This is the basic reason I use exchanger service sometimes. I used Changelly and ShapeShift earlier. I liked both. This time I thought about trying ChangeNOW.
ChangeNOW exchange screen
I landed on ChangeNOW website. The website has a stable dark theme. The green portions make it very vibrant. I am basically going to make an exchange. I need to convert 0.15 ETH to EOS. It offers two different kind of exchange options – classic rate and fixed rate. In classic rate, it shows a tentative amount which you are going to receive after conversion but as the market rate keeps on fluctuating, you get slightly different amount after conversion. The fixed-rate feature is useful in ChangeNOW as you get whatever it shows on the screen. Okay, now I start the process. The screen shows an Ethereum address where I should deposit ETH by the next 20 minutes. I deposit 0.15 ETH from my private wallet to the depicted address. My job is done. Let me wait for sometimes.
The exchange process in brief
Bingo! My EOS arrives in my private EOS wallet by the next 7 minutes. I get the exact quantity which was shown on the screen. ChangeNOW doesn’t have any hidden margin. It looks transparent and they didn’t ask for my KYC or bank statement for exchange. Are you wondering how it happens? I don’t want to bore you with my lecture. Have a look at the below-mentioned infographic:
ChangeNOW is not a new project. It has significantly grown in the last few years. The website is rated 5 stars by Trustpilot. There are many similar websites offering similar services but all are not trustworthy. Changelly and ShapeShift are the big players in this business. But ChangeNOW is very useful as it doesn’t need signup or login. You can execute the whole process of exchanging your crypto assets without logging into their website or providing any personal information. The fixed-rate exchange service is really awesome and transparent. You can buy crypto with a debit/credit card also. ChangeNOW has an affiliate scheme too and you can earn decent bucks by referring your friends. You can use their free affiliate widget on your personal website also. As I’ve used similar services earlier, I tried to compare ChangeNOW with some other prominent players. Here is the outcome:
Don’t forget NOW
As I’m discussing ChangeNOW, I should not miss the NOW token. NOW is the native token of ChangeNOW system. In 2018, NOW Token was issued on Ethereum blockchain. It was the first cryptocurrency made by an instant exchange platform. At present, NOW exists both on Ethereum and Binance chains. NOW is used as an instrument of voting in ChangeNOW Asset Listing Campaign. This program allows any project to be listed on the ChangeNOW exchange with the help of NOW token and crypto community. ChangeNOW burns all NOW tokens collected from their campaign quarterly. NOW was the second token listed on Binance DEX. ChangeNOW has a VIP program too (sorry, it doesn’t work without sign up). There is NOW token cashback for ChangeNOW’s VIP customers.
ChangeNOW is cool. You can definitely give it a try if you are looking for changing assets without delays, signups and dealing with complex website interfaces. I didn’t find any mentionable difference in the commission charged by ChangeNOW and its major competitors but ChangeNOW can act as your private exchanger. Your asset always remains with you. So the risk of losing fund is extremely low. Let me come back to the original thought mentioned in the title of my post. To ChangeNOW or not – that was the question! I find my answer. Do you?
Check out ChangeNOW