The Nigerian government is in an all-out war against cryptocurrencies in the country. The last move was a banking ban last February. Still, one couldn’t tell it simply by looking at the stats. After all, Nigeria leads not only the continent but the entire world as the country that uses cryptos the most. Here’s how cryptos are going so far in the country and how mobile technology is helping to spread them.
According to reports from Google Trends, the term “cryptocurrency” is one of the most searched ones in Nigeria. Nigeria is one of Africa’s largest countries and one with the youngest population. It means that most Nigerians are into technology, and 56 million people have a smartphone.
Nigeria is also considerably advanced in terms of 5G deployment compared with other countries in the region. Additionally, the banking system fails most of the population, and there’s a general distrust in the financial system. Such a combination of factors has turned Nigeria into a hotbed for crypto enthusiasts.
Cryptocurrencies have become part of the daily lives of millions of Nigerians, who use them for the most varied purposes. Online shopping and gambling are some of the most common ways to use cryptos, but it’s also possible to pay with them in street businesses and local shops.
Operations with cryptocurrencies are completely anonymous. That’s why many people use them for online operations. Gambling and shopping are some of the most common ways of spending cryptos in the country. Still, it’s possible to visit new no deposit casinos without risking a dime.
Anyway, 33.4 million Nigerians trade cryptos, according to data from last April. It means that the crypto market thrives, despite restless efforts from the government to curb it. Where do they store their cryptos, though? Also, how do they trade cryptos?
Wallets: Hot or Cold?
Cryptocurrencies must be stored in digital wallets, but it’s up to the user to connect this wallet to the internet or not. That’s precisely the difference between cold and hot wallets: hot wallets are connected to the internet, and cold wallets aren’t.
While cold wallets look and function pretty much like a USB card, hot wallets are mostly like regular e-wallets, such as PayPal. Here, your information and assets are stored in the cloud, completely encrypted, and safe from cyber-attacks. o
Hot wallets are mostly apps for Android, iOS, or others. That’s why the rise of smartphone ownership is also related to the cryptocurrency growth in Africa as a whole. After all, only 18% of Nigerian households have a computer through which such wallets can be accessed. Check below some of the most popular apps for crypto users.
Coinomi is a crypto platform that allows users to trade over 1,800 cryptocurrencies. It’s also possible to store them there, thanks to its solid security system. It also confirms payments and other transactions much faster with its SegWit support. The application is available for the leading mobile operating systems, but the platform can also be accessed via Windows, Mac, or Linux computers.
Here’s another multi-currency crypto wallet, which supports more than 100 fiat currencies, and 235 cryptos. The platform is free to use and can be used across PCs and mobile devices. Better still, there are no fees for any transaction.
This app imposes no limits on transaction volume and also rewards users for staking. Exodus also holds a partnership with Trezor One and Trezor Model T, which means Exodus can pair to their hardware.
Atomic Cryptocurrency was designed for those unfamiliar with crypto operations. The whole platform is quite intuitive and aimed at beginners. There are more than 300 cryptos to choose from, apart from the celebrities Ethereum, Bitcoin, and Litecoin.
Atomic Cryptocurrency was created using a mobile-first approach, favouring those who like to trade on the go or use cryptos for daily operations. Although the app itself is free to download, there are fees for some services.
The crypto market doesn’t seem to acknowledge any of the restrictions imposed by the Nigerian government and the national banking system. Quite the contrary, more people are becoming interested in how to trade and store crypto assets.
However, this market depends on widespread technology to function at its best. The expansion of smartphone ownership and the development of the 5G rollout might bring even more users to this ever-growing niche.