Founded in China in 2013, Gate.io was one of the first-ever crypto exchanges to hit the market. Gate.io was initially called Bter.com, however, in 2017, Bter.com rebranded to Gate.io and the company’s operations moved from China to where it currently operates, the Cayman Islands. Gate.io supports an impressive 1400+ cryptocurrencies, and more than 2400 markets and offers traders advanced trading tools such as staking, margin trading, futures, perpetual contracts, and crypto lending and borrowing.
As of January 2022, the company surpassed 10 million global active users, making it one of the largest platforms currently operating. Gate.io also has its own token called GateToken (GT) and is built on Gate.io’s own blockchain network called Gatechain which operates on the DeFi ecosystem.
Is Gate.io safe?
Gate.io in its current form has not really had any large security breaches. However, prior to rebranding in 2017, Gate.io’s previous platform Bter did suffer a breach in 2015 and it was reported that 7170 Bitcoin was stolen by hackers. Users were reimbursed, however, and since then no major incident has occurred.
Gate.io security features include:
- Two-factor authentication with Google Authenticator
- 2FA via SMS/Text message
- Login verifications
- Blind IP logins
- A different fund withdrawal password
- Anti-phishing code
- Know Your Customer (KYC) and KYC2 verification
- SSL encryption
We were quite impressed with the number of security measures that Gate.io has developed. One simple yet effective measure is the requirement of an additional password for withdrawal of funds. So, even if a hacker manages to breach your account through phishing or other means, they cannot steal or transfer any funds without that additional password.
Gate.io also uses hot and cold wallet storage, which are decentralised offline crypto wallets stored in secret and secure locations.
Before we go any further, users from the U.S need to be aware that due to regulatory red tape, Gate.io is limited in most parts of the U.S and banned outright in New York and Washington. The limited-service lets customers open an account, but they will be restricted to basic spot trading and buying crypto at market value. More advanced features like margin trading, leverage, and copy trading will not be offered. Furthermore, not all coins will be available.
Residents of Canada and Japan are subject to the same limitations, and the following countries are also banned from using the service.
Assets & Pairs
Gate.io offers an impressive number of coins and trading pairs. Ranked 1st on Coinmarketcap’s Top crypto exchanges’ list for markets, with 2408 markets/trading pairs. Gate.io also has 1435 cryptocurrencies listed, which makes it one of the most impressive platforms out there in terms of assets available for purchase.
Sign-up / Verification Process
The Gate.io sign-up process was not as straightforward as other platforms, but this comes down to the extra layer of verifications (KYC2) needed that other platforms do not use. You can sign up using either the mobile app or directly on Gate.io. You will be asked the usual personal detail questions and can start using the platform directly after you have completed the email verification to get a feel for it. You will only need to carry out the KYC steps when you want to start funding your account.
We like to get the admin out of the way as soon as possible and tried doing the ID verification immediately. We are not sure if it was because of the time difference, but KYC verification on Gate.io took us about 16 hours, longer than what they advertise, and much longer than the 10 to 15 min this process takes on many other crypto exchanges.
You can probably tell up until this point that we really like Gate.io. Unfortunately, though, the funding methods let it down. Gate.io has extremely limited support for fiat currencies as a funding option. This means that you cannot buy any cryptocurrencies with your bank card or a service like PayPal or Apple Pay without going through another service, which requires more KYC verifications. You also cannot hold a fiat balance on Gate.io.
You can fund your account using an existing crypto wallet, or using another exchange, and all deposits are free. We had to buy some cryptocurrency using Coinbase and transfer it across to Gate.io. This makes Gate.io an amazing platform if you already have crypto and are looking for a more advanced exchange, but not the one to buy your first crypto on.
To withdraw, users first need to be KYC verified. Remember that Gate.io does not support fiat, so you can only withdraw crypto. Withdrawals from Gate.io are free, however, customers are charged a standard blockchain fee which is separate from the Gate.io platform. There is a daily withdrawal limit, but unless you are trading large volumes, this should not be a concern. Withdrawal speeds are also dependent on the blockchain network speed, which can be anywhere from instant to the unlikely and worst-case scenario, 24 hours. As mentioned, withdrawals are protected by a second password, which we think is a really good feature.
Gate.io uses a maker-taker model, and the percentage is based on your 30-day trading volume (or VIP tier as Gate.io puts it on their website). A breakdown of fees per service is as follows:
A standard fee of 0.2% is applied to each spot trading transaction and as your trading volume increases, your spot trading fee reduces. The more volume you trade, the cheaper it becomes. If you use GateToken (GT) to trade, it becomes more appealing because Gate.io offers a 25% discount on maker/taker fees if you use its token.
For example, if you are on the lowest tier and have a 30-day trading volume of 1.5 BTC, you will be charged a 0.2% maker/taker fee, or 0.15% if using GT. If you have trading volume of at least 75000 BTC per 30-day trading volume (The highest tier), you will be charged a 0.055%/0.065% maker/taker fee.
Gate.io uses a similar fee structure for futures, a list of which you can find below.
Platform & Ease-of-Use
Depending on your crypto trading experience and knowledge, you will either love the Gate.io platform or find it confusing. Gate.io offers both a standard and professional platform and you can easily access both depending on your needs. We found that even the standard platform was quite confusing compared to other ‘standard’ trading platforms we have used from other crypto exchanges.
But this is not a bad thing. The interface is easy to navigate if you know what you are looking at. The amount of information at your fingertips is impressive, and users can switch between different tabs to access markets, margin trading, lending & borrowing, contract trading and your wallet. A live order book is constantly churning out previous trades and volumes, and a central, in-depth chart shows all the technical analysis on any coin or market that you have selected.
On the surface, the professional user interface is a lot more compact and scaled back. Gate.io have removed a lot of the clutter from the standard interface that would possibly distract a professional trader, like news updates, and quick access to multiple trading pairs and assets. Instead, the professional UI provides an emphasis on in-depth charting and a more focused analysis on your relevant asset. You can access all the same features that the standard UI offers, it just isn’t as readily accessible.
Long story short, it serves traders very well.
Gate.io has put a lot into the development of its mobile app. At first, it may seem quite complex, but within a few minutes of getting to know it, we were able to navigate it with ease. The main screen gives you an analysis on the top crypto coin risers and fallers for the day, and you can slide through to your favourite markets, spot trading, futures, and more. If you click on a coin, it brings up an integrated detailed summary and graph of its daily activity. Gate.io has managed to cram every option its desktop UI offers into its mobile app, without making it too complicated or messy.
We could easily access our wallet, explore the NFT marketplace and learn more about Gate.io’s ‘Copy Trading’ feature (more about this feature in our Trading Features section below). It was also easy to access help and speak to a bot about most queries. The mobile app is compatible with any iOS or Android device and is available on the relevant app stores.
We are active on many exchanges, and can confidently say that few exchanges offer as many trading features as Gate.io. Here are the main ones:
- HODL & Earn – Earn income by holding cryptocurrency
- Yield farming – Stake your crypto coins and earn income
- Cryptocurrency lending – Lend your cryptocurrency to other lenders at a set interest rate
- Margin trading – Leveraged trading up to 10x the entry position. Leverage differs per coin.
- Push transactions – Peer-to-peer sales
- Spot trading – Crypto trading pairs
- ETF trading – Funds consisting of one or more cryptocurrency products
- Perpetual contract trading – BTC or USDT contracts trading with no expiration date
- Copy-trading – users can copy other users’ proven investment strategies, with a fee of the profit going to the creator of the trade
- CBBC contracts – callable bull/bear contracts. A leveraged financial derivative.
Gate.io has a new ‘Copy Trading’ feature where users can copy another user’s trading strategies. In return, the creator of the strategy receives a 5% share of the copier’s profits. There is no limit on the number of replications, so users are incentivised to share their strategies.
So, for example, X becomes a trader, Y copies X’s strategy and Z copy X’s strategy, X gets 5% of Y’s and Z’s profits from the strategy and there is no limit on the number of replications.
So, even if you’re not a trader, all you have to do is find a good one. Granted – it’s easier said than done, but it’s a good feature nonetheless.
Volume & Liquidity
With the number of coins and markets on offer from Gate.io, it is not surprising that Gate.io ranks 7th (at the time of writing) on CoinMarketCap’s exchange ranking list. This is based on volume (24h), average liquidity, weekly visits, markets, coins, and fiat support. Liquidity scores a market pair from 0 to 1000 based on the slippage incurred by various order sizes. A higher score indicates a more liquid market.
Gate.io has a liquidity rating of 541 and a 24-h trading volume of just over 2 billion. That’s more than enough for any trader.
The Gate.io Wallet
Gate.io has a separate product for storing cryptocurrency, NFTs and other data, called Wallet.io. Wallet.io uses all the same security that the Gate.io platform uses, with the added security of hot and cold wallets. According to Virgillio Lizardo, the Vice President of International Affairs at Gate.io, Wallet.IO differs from other platforms as it is completely separate from funds in the user account. This way, assets are clearly visible in the chain and prevent fraud. Also, unlike many other wallets, all users’ balances and transactions are recorded on the blockchain.
Gate.io offers the ability to stake, called ‘Hodl&Earn.’ It is a way for users to earn passive income just by holding their crypto for a specific agreeable term. No early withdrawal is allowed, and interest is released automatically when the term ends. The coins currently available for staking are as follows:
Gate.io supports borrowing and lending. Crypto lending is what banks do when you deposit fiat currency into a bank account; they use your money and loan it out to other people and earn interest on the loan. You can do that with your cryptocurrency, but in this case, the roles are reversed, and you are technically the bank. If you have enough crypto in your wallet and Gate.io supports lending it (it supports more than 200 coins currently), then this is a fantastic way to grow your crypto.
Gate.io has a myriad of help and support functions. It provides 24/7 customer support via its help centre. We put it to the test and browsed its library of help topics and were impressed with how detailed and helpful it is. Gate.io have also provided screenshots and YouTube tutorials for most topics. We also tried its live chat function and apparently spoke to a real human being… in the bot’s defence, it was quite convincing.
If you still cannot find answers after trying their help centre, you can submit a ticket, and someone will come back to you via email. Gate.io is also on every social media platform with open DMs.
Conclusions for beginners
Gate.io is not for beginners. The trading features are more geared toward an experienced trader, and the user interface on both the desktop and mobile versions will confuse you more than anything else. We recommend trying a more beginner-friendly exchange, like Coinbase or Crypto.com, and learning more about trading and crypto before trying Gate.io.
Conclusions for experienced traders
Traders will really enjoy using Gate.io. The standard interface is excellent and very user-friendly, offering all the data and metrics needed for the advanced features Gate.io offers. If you need more of a focused view of your trades, the Gate.io professional trading view will allow you to tune in on what is important to you. The exchange is very secure, and fees are attractive with free withdrawals and deposits (excluding blockchain fees). More advanced options such as yield, margin, staking, and perpetual contract trading are very appealing as well. We like it, and we think you will too.