WazirX Review: Features and New Products
WazirX is among the few cryptocurrency exchanges and businesses in India lucky to survive a two-year period in the cold. When the country's central bank, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), prohibited regulated financial firms from working with crypto-focused businesses, it wasn't business as usual in the Indian virtual currency space. Luckily, WazirX managed to withstand the cold to become one of India's leading cryptocurrency platforms.
The exchange has added new products and attracted investments from key players in the virtual currency space in its growth path. Below is a WazirX review looking at the exchange's hits and misses.
Who's behind WazirX?
WazirX was launched in March 2018 by Nischal Shetty, Sameer Mhatre, and Siddharth Menon. Shetty is a programmer and a blockchain influencer on Twitter. Mhatre has experience in full-stack development and heads the technical department.
Menon heads the WazirX product department. Menon is associated with innovating WazirX to become the world's first peer to peer (P2P) exchange with auto order matching functionalities.
Consequently, the innovation saw the platform maneuver through an uncertain regulatory environment created by the RBI ban. How? Because using a P2P approach removes the need for the exchange to seek a banking partner since traders directly connect with each other.
Notably, the three co-founders are behind a social media management platform, Crowdfire, with more than 20 million users globally. Apart from the co-founders, the WazirX team also comprises blockchain-passionate individuals and experienced cryptocurrency traders.
WazirX Review: Features and functionalities
Fees on trading
The Indian virtual currency exchange charges a trading fee. However, the fees depend on the trading market the trader interacts with. Notably, the exchange offers three major trading avenues;
- Spot market:Here, traders trade cryptos on the spot. For example, once a sell order lands on the order book, it's immediately matched if there's a corresponding buy order. The spot market also facilitates orders that fill using the current price, commonly known as market orders.
Spot trading on WazirX attracts a uniform fee of 0.2 percent for market makers (sellers) and market takers (buyers).
- P2P market:The exchange's P2P product is unique because, unlike others like LocalBitcoins where you must manually find a buyer or a seller, it auto-matches the two. It eases the process by removing the need to scroll order listings, analyze order price, volumes, payment methods, etc.
Additionally, it eradicates a scenario where a trader has to place or choose multiple orders since one order cannot fit their requirements. By vetting traders, the WazirX P2P exchange is not only safe but reliable.
Interestingly, apart from order auto-matching, WazirX provides an escrow service where the buyer and seller must confirm receipt before funds can be released. However, the P2P platform supports trading in Tether (USDT). Note that the P2P market charges 0.0 percent in fees.
- Smart Token Fund (STF) – STF is a unique feature on the trading platform. Here, traders can delegate trading to seasoned traders. The exchange already has a team of pro traders who can effectively handle trading for novice traders and those who know how to trade but do not have time to trade.
STF increases the chances of growing crypto portfolios. Note that the pro traders earn a commission from trading profits, with the exchange taking 25 percent. In the cryptocurrency space, SFT's approach is commonly known as covesting.
Fees on Withdrawal
Withdrawing from WazirX attracts a fee. However, the charges are variable. Mostly, it depends on the asset being withdrawn. Bitcoin (BTC), for example, has a withdrawal fee of 0.0005 BTC and a withdrawal minimum of 0.001 BTC.
Also, USDT attracts a 1.5 USDT withdrawal fee. Aave (AAVE), Algorand (ALGO), and Cardano (ADA) attract a withdrawal fee of 0.2 AAVE, 3.3 ALGO, and 3 ADA, respectively.
Note that WazirX deducts the withdrawal fee before processing the withdrawal request. Therefore, the receiving address will receive the withdrawn amount but less the withdrawal fee.
Apart from fees, the exchange imposes a minimum withdrawal amount. This encourages WazirX traders to plan their withdrawal and possibly merge small withdrawal amounts to enhance processing and prevent congesting the platform.
Apart from the withdrawal fee, the exchange charges 15 USD to recover wrongly sent coins. Unfortunately, coins sent to the wrong address are not recoverable. Scenarios where a recovery is possible include when an incorrect or missing destination tag is provided, especially when withdrawing Ripple (XRP), Stellar Lumens (XLM), and Binance coin (BNB). Also, WazirX can attempt a recovery if a mistake happens when interacting with ETH or ERC20 on smart contracts.
WazirX Deposit Fees
Although crypto to crypto deposits are free, deposits involving fiat currencies are charged. However, the charge depends on the deposit method chosen. Luckily, depositing fiat through UPI is free.
WazirX Review: Security
The exchange provides security through two approaches; the normal username-password combination and the two-factor authentication. The 2FA feature supports one time passwords (OTPs) sent via short messages (SMS) or Email.
Also, it accommodates application-based OTPs from Google Authenticator and Authy. Fortunately, the exchange allows its users to switch between the different authentication methods smoothly.
Apart from the account security features, the exchange guard's users' funds by using standard practices in the virtual currency space. They include storing a high percentage of users' funds in cold wallets and whitelisting withdrawal addresses.
Additionally, the stored funds are subjected to a multi-signature system. WazirX also conducts evenly-spaced security audits and has robust anti-money laundering (AML) and know your customer (KYC) specifications.
WazirX and Binance
WazirX and Binance became an item through an acquisition. Binance is a leading cryptocurrency exchange with more than 15 million users globally and an approximate 24-hour trading volume of more than $1.5 billion. With the acquisition, Binance users can access WazirX and vice versa without registering afresh on each platform.
Therefore, Binance users can access WazirX's covesting function, P2P platform, and spot trading. Apart from accessing WazirX functionalities, the two platforms' coming together allows their users to move funds between the two platforms seamlessly. A Binance-WazirX combination allows Indian cryptocurrency enthusiasts to interact with a wide range of cryptos listed on Binance.
Notably, instead of combining the two platforms, WazirX operates as a standalone brand of Binance. The Indian exchange notes that its acquisition:
"Is another step towards making cryptocurrency accessible to everyone in the world, and achieving our mission of involving everyone into the blockchain revolution." Also, the exchange strives to make an impact on P2P as Binance has done on crypto-to-crypto.
WazirX token, WRX
The exchange has a native currency called WRX. Just like Binance's BNB, WRX forms a crucial part of the WazirX ecosystem. Interestingly, the token is powered by Binance Chain, a Binance-built decentralized platform, and has a total supply of one billion WRX coins.
WRX investors benefit from a 50 percent discount on trading fees. However, the discount is only available when settling the fees in the native token. Unfortunately, it decreases each year for four years. For instance, in the second, third, and fourth year, the discount stands at 25, 12.5, and 6.25 percent, respectively.
Apart from trading fee discounts, WRX can pay for listing fees on the exchange and margin fees when margin trading. In addition, WRX holders are entitled to voting rights when deciding on projects to be listed on the exchange and when adding new features to the exchange.
For those always on the go, WazirX provides a mobile application to ensure that a trader never misses a vital notification or trading signal. The app is available on iOS and Android-powered mobile devices.
The WazirX App quenches the thirsts of new and pro traders. At the time of writing, the app had 100,000+ downloads on the Google Play Store and a rating of 4.2 out of 5. Also, WazirX supports PC clients for Windows and MacOS computing platforms.
WazirX provides a simple design to accommodate a wide range of cryptocurrency users. Also, its availability across mobile, desktop, and web makes it convenient to interact with the exchange.
The convenience aspect is further enhanced by the presence of an application programming interface (API) that provides access even outside the native exchange interface.
The exchange also provides a referral program allowing users to earn a commission for inviting new users. For example, the exchange provides a 50-percent commission on every referral trade, and the commission has a 24-hour payout.
With spot trading being the most used on the exchange, having a uniform taker-maker fee schedule reduces the confusion among traders on what they should pay for trading on the platform. Also, a mobile application and an API provides an easy, secure, and efficient way to access WazirX, whether on the go or outside the exchange.
Although the exchange has standard features to secure customers' funds, adding the option of a hardware security key for users' accounts provides another dimension on securing accounts from being hacked. Its innovative P2P offering and integration with Binance put the Indian cryptocurrency space on the global map by allowing enhanced global crypto trading.