Formerly known as Antshares, Neo is a community-driven, open-source blockchain platform which bears a lot of similarity to Ethereum. It was originally launched in 2014, by a team of developers from China.
For all those invested in Neo, you must save your Neo-related private and public keys in a reliable Neo Wallet. This guide will look at multiple aspects of Neo Wallets in this article, including what they are, their types, how they work, features to look for while selecting one, and the best Neo wallets in 2021.
Our List of the Top Neo Wallets
Looking at how the crypto market has opened up in the past few years, many Neo wallets are available for use today. This can often be confusing for not only the new but also even seasoned crypto investors. In this guide, we’ll acquaint you with some of the best Neo wallets you can use today, as well as their advantages and features.
What is a Neo Wallet?
A Neo wallet is a cryptocurrency wallet that can help you safely store your Neo coins and tokens. This wallet can be in the form of an online platform, desktop software, a hardware device, a mobile app, or even a piece of paper with printed keys. The digital ones normally allow you to interact with Neo’s blockchain and successfully send or receive tokens and check its existing balance.
Just like in the case of an actual wallet, though you’re free to choose a brand/type you like, its basic purpose remains the same, which is to safeguard your assets. Similarly, a Neo wallet, no matter which type you use, enables you to keep your Neo assets safe and handy.
Types of Cryptocurrency Wallets
There are different types of cryptocurrency wallets based on how they are used and their security features. Each one has its own advantages and disadvantages. Eventually, it comes down to your personal preference and how well the wallet helps you meet your overall objectives. Let’s look at some of the well-known crypto wallet types below:
A crypto wallet can be called hot if it stays connected to the Internet most of the time. The main purpose of a hot wallet is to help the user easily receive, store and send cryptocurrencies whenever needed, and therefore, it works very well for people who indulge in regular crypto transactions. However, their constant connectivity to the internet also makes them vulnerable to hacking attempts and thefts. All popular web, mobile and desktop wallets can be categorised as hot wallets.
As against a hot wallet, a cold wallet doesn’t stay connected to the internet at all times and therefore is considered more secure than the former. Moreover, it’s in the form of a physical device, normally the size of a USB drive, wherein you can store your cryptocurrency-related private and public keys. It can be in a paper form too, with the keys printed on it. The digital cold wallets can be easily connected to the internet whenever desired, to execute buy/sell transactions.
Mobile & Desktop Wallets
A mobile wallet can be termed as a hot wallet that works in the form of a mobile app on an Android, iOS, or Windows Mobile device. It provides instant access to the stored crypto coins and hence is ideal for anyone who regularly uses cryptocurrencies to make online/off-line payments.
A desktop wallet on the other hand can be either a cold or a hot wallet depending upon how rarely or frequently it connects to the internet. The wallet is downloaded and installed on a laptop/computer running on any of the well-known operating systems such as Mac, Linux, or Windows. What sets it apart is that it offers a healthy mix of security and convenience. However, it is highly recommended to use a reliable firewall, antivirus software, and anti-malware along with a desktop wallet.
Hot vs Cold Wallets
As explained above, the biggest differentiator between a hot and cold wallet is how regularly it connects to the Internet. It’s not uncommon to see people owning multiple hot & cold wallets, depending upon how available/unavailable they like their digital currencies to be. Whilst most hot wallets don’t cost a dime and are capable of holding multiple cryptos, cold wallets, particularly the good hardware kinds, cost $100 and upwards. In addition, the majority of cold wallets are non-custodial, whereas hot wallets can be either custodial or non-custodial.
Most popular amongst the ‘Hodlers’ and widely perceived to be the safest means of storing cryptocurrencies, hardware wallets are physical devices that appear quite similar to USB drives. These devices have their own OLED screen, buttons, and a user-friendly interface. You can connect the wallet to the internet whenever needed, and can communicate with a cryptocurrency’s blockchain to process buy/sell transactions. Else, it stays offline most of the time. Having the capability of storing public and private keys of multiple cryptocurrencies, the good ones will normally set you back by $ 100 or more.
These are paper wallets that have your wallets’ private and public keys printed on them. The paper might also have a QR code that can be scanned to retrieve all pertinent information. As the paper has no connectivity to the Internet, it might come across as the safest cold wallet out there, however, it has its unique risks. It can get - soaked in/splashed with water, trashed, crumpled, or simply fall off from your pocket. Nonetheless, it’s by far the most malware-free you can get when it comes to crypto wallets.
How do Neo Wallets Work?
Before delving into the workings of a Neo wallet, it’s important to throw light on private and public keys first. Whenever you store Neo, or for that matter any cryptocurrency in a wallet, you’d be essentially storing the private and public keys associated with it, in the cryptocurrency wallet.
These keys can be better understood by using the email address analogy. Whenever someone wants to send an email to you, they’d ask for your email address and send it to that address. But when you wish to shoot an email to someone, you’d need to enter a password to access your email account, and only then can you send an email. In the same way, with respect to crypto wallets, the public keys are used for the generation of a public address to which anyone can send you a cryptocurrency. However, to prove ownership of the cryptocurrency associated with that public address, and to send it subsequently, you’d need to provide its private key.
So, whenever you deal with a crypto exchange/broker or any of the P2P networks, to buy/sell a cryptocurrency, the purchased currency will be sent to the public address or wallet address provided by you. Whenever you choose to sell that cryptocurrency later, you’d need to prove your ownership to its blockchain ledger, by entering in your private key. It’s only then the transaction will be authorised and executed.
Key Things to Consider when Choosing the Best Neo Wallets
Once you’re aware of the different crypto wallets available in the market, you can choose the right Neo wallet based on your requirements. Below we’ll tell you about some of the key points that must be kept in mind:
- Your purpose – If you wish to invest in a cryptocurrency and hold it for a considerable time, it would be better that you use a cold wallet. On the contrary, if you transact with cryptocurrencies regularly, an online or mobile hot wallet would be ideal for you.
- Multi or single currency – You should also determine if you’d like to transact in multiple tokens or just one. If it’s only Neo tokens that you wish to store and use, you can avail a dedicated Neo wallet for it.
- Security features – You should look for security features available in the cryptocurrency wallet, such as two-factor authentication (2FA) and multi-sign on functionality.
- Price – Most of the cryptocurrency wallets come free, but some hardware wallets can cost $100 and upwards.
- Ease of use – A cryptocurrency wallet should be easy-to-use, even for new investors. It should ideally have an easy to understand UI, which can be used even by new users.
Pros and Cons of Using Neo Wallets
Selecting the right Neo wallet is not a decision that should be made in haste. Neo’s solid fundamentals (adoption signs, sound project development and government backing) make it an excellent prospect for long-term investors, and hence also underlines the importance of using a good Neo wallet to store your coins. Keeping all that in perspective, we shared with you various Neo wallet related aspects in this article, including the meaning of a Neo wallet, how it works, different types of Neo wallets you can choose from, and what to look for in one.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, hardware wallets make a lot of sense if you wish to store large amounts of Neo and/or other cryptocurrencies in them, especially for the long term.
Most wallets can be used for free. Normally only some types of hardware wallets cost money.
Yes, cryptocurrencies including Neo can be legally purchased in various countries today. Having said that, please check with your local laws first.
Yes, it’s a possibility, if one is using an unknown and unreliable wallet.
It’s possible to regenerate your desktop/laptop wallet using a restoration code and/or your private key.
Yes, many people store their cryptocurrencies in multiple wallets to improve their security.
Yes, some firms provide the facility to raise a loan against your digital assets stored in a crypto wallet.
Yes, you can sell your Neo holdings on an exchange for USD.