The most common questions I get are what things to use for Bitcoin holding, buying, selling, sending, etc.  The following are my top recommendations with some caveats.  These are…

  1. I recommend places to buy Bitcoin – That means they are easy, they work and I know anyone who tries it without making excuses can do it there.  It does not mean I think CoinBase is trust worthy just you can trust them to let you buy and withdraw your coins and trust them for as long as that takes.
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  2. I Don’t Only Recommend Perfection – Would the gold standard be running a node, and a lightning node, doing all real HODLing on a hardware wallet with your own node.  Using something like Zeus as a mobile GUI?  It is pretty damn good, but most people won’t do it, ever.  I accept this and give solutions for various levels.
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  3. I am not a Technical Support Resource – I don’t want to be, I refuse to be and honestly you could not afford me to do so.  So when I can I like things with good tech support.  For instance yes Exodus is a company, they do push shit coins in their swap service, but if you need help and ask for it, you will get it.
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  4. No Solution is Perfect – Perfect is a goal, not a destination.  I recommend what I have used and has not let me down.  I do receive commission on some of this, not all.  I don’t do it for a pay check, this kind of thing doesn’t pay a lot anyway.  For instance I don’t get paid to recommend Exodus or Zeus, I do get paid if you buy a Trezor or open a Swan account if you use my links.  I believe in full disclosure so if something below is a sale I am incentivized to make, then it is so noted.  If you don’t see that it is unsolicited as a recommendation.

 

Earn Bitcoin When Paying Bills or Shopping

The Fold Card – Bluntly if you don’t get one, you hate money.  There are two options, paid and free.  The paid option is 150 USD a year and doubles your reward.  You earn cash back on all purchases with it.  It will work for any expense that would accept a Visa card.  You can also buy gift cards for services like Amazon and get even more sats back on those.  Just paying my web server bill with the Fold Card puts enough bitcoin in my wallet to more that cover the fee for the Plus option twice over.

We pay for everything with Fold, our health insurance, our groceries, etc.  If they take Visa we pay with Fold.  It is also a DEBIT card, not a credit card.  I generally just fund it from PayPal with my PayPal debit or ACH from my bank.  Honestly this is such a good deal it seems like it can’t be real but it is.  Give it a try with the free option to see how it works.  Then it if the math works out you can upgrade to plus.  Again if you don’t use Fold, you hate money!  In this case you hate money in the form of Bitcoin. – I do receive commissions as an affiliate.

Software Wallets 

  • Zeus – A great wallet that handles on and off chain transactions and provides a good view into your node.  That is the thing you have to run your own node to use Zeus.
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  • Exodus – Been recommending it for years, works seamlessly with Trezor Hardware Wallet, has lightning as an option but lacks some lightning features.  If you want to hold more than Bitcoin it has most other coins and tokens.
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  • Wallet of Satoshi – The most simple lightning wallet there is to use but solid on features.  Can send to an on chain wallet but not hold on chain bitcoin.
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  • Breez – A very diverse lightning wallet with nested apps inside it.  Another one to only hold lightning BTC in.  You can’t hold on chain Bitcoin but can send lightning BTC back on chain to another wallet from it.  This one even has a Point of Sale system built into it. It is really a layer three app with an integrated wallet, and you can steam to podcasts with it on Podcasting 2.0.  It was actually hard to decide where to put this one as it does so much.

 

Exchanges to Buy Bitcoin On

  • CoinBase – I don’t really love the way the company is managed and that they list every shitcoin under the sun.  But it is incredibly simple to use and on board with.  It is as simple as say PayPal.  Just buy and withdraw asap like any exchange. – I do receive commissions as an affiliate.
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  • Strike – As long as you don’t have any issues with verifying it is my favorite way to buy bitcoin on the fly and since you can deposit money in seconds and pay in bitcoin without buying bitcoin I love it for that too.  The bad news is their customer service sucks if you have any onboarding issues.  They never give anything approaching a reasonable answer. – I do receive commissions as an affiliate.
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  • Swan Bitcoin – Swan has a lot of safety built into it.  It does have longer waits for withdrawals especially with ACH deposits.  But they are an incredible exchange to work with.  Their support is AWESOME.  You can even automate both dollar cost average buying and withdrawals to your hard wallet. – I do receive commissions as an affiliate
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  • CoinEx – Bluntly this is a shitcoin exchange but if you don’t want to buy for fiat they are NoKYC with up to 10K a day of withdrawal without KYC.  This is great if someone wants to pay with a shitcoin, you just have them send to your account and convert and withdraw.  Support is good, not great but good, way better than CoinBase or Strike, which is sad really. – I do receive commissions as an affiliate.

 

Hardware Wallets

  • Trezor Model T and Trezor Model 1 – I love both of these (but use the Model T personally) and they work seamlessly with Exodus.  When you do that Exodus is only a GUI into your Hardware wallet.  It is slick as hell!  Watch this video to learn more.  – I do receive commissions as an affiliate.
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  • Ledger – I mainly recommend this one because I think it is great and often when I mention Trezor so often I get what about Ledger, it is a great solution too. Always buy hardware wallets direct form the company.
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  • BitBox by Shift Crypto – I kept hearing about it from Guy Swann and I checked it out.  I have to admit it is awesome.  I honestly don’t see myself switching from Trezor to it but if I was not already using Trezor I might choose this one instead.  In fact I don’t keep all my coins in one wallet so next time I feel I need another one, I will likely get one of these.  This one is Bitcoin only. – I do receive commissions as an affiliate.

 

Services and Nodes

  • Start9 – Start9 is so much more than a way to run a bitcoin node and if you want a lightning node.  It is a full digital sovereignty solution.   Run your node/s but also host your own e2e encrypted chat, host your own files, etc.  I don’t receive a commission from Start9 but the are a sponsor on TSP and part of my members program.  My members get enough off a Start9 server to cover membership fees for three years.  More with the larger solutions.  My membership program is here.
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  • Voltage.cloud – If you want a lightning node up and running in 5 minutes flat, this is for you.  Cost is about 12 bucks a month though it can be more depending on what you want.  The tools are powerful!  Keep in mind this is a hosted solution but it is your node the way it is your server when you have your own server in a data center.  Voltage does not have access to your node anymore than the information that is visible anyway.
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    I run one of these mainly to learn about lightning.  Their primary market is companies and individuals building solutions like lightning wallets, layer three apps, etc.  If you want uptime over personal control (put your hand physically on your lightning node) this is for you.  Also if you have some inbound liquidity, don’t mind opening up a few channels with a few hundred bucks (still your bitcoin) it is a great way to learn.

 

Podcasting 2.0 Value for Value Apps

  • Fountain.fm – This is my personal favorite because V4V goes in all directions.  Fountain to listeners, listeners to podcasters, podcasters to listeners and listeners to listeners.  The clips feature alone makes this my favorite as a host and consumer.  I also have a playlist on the BBO YouTube Channel on how to use the Fountain App.
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  • Breez – Yep this one is going here and in strait software wallets.  It is a good podcast app, but it is so versitle with point of sale, nested apps like BitRefill etc. I am not even sure what to call it but I LOVE it.
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  • Curio Caster – This one is built by a mutual member of my community and Adam Curry’s community (Adam created V4V and Podcasting).  It is a great and well featured app.

 

Monetize Your Media

  • Alby – Direct contributions from your audience. Use a Lightning Address to receive value for value payments in Bitcoin from your audience on existing platforms like Youtube, Twitter, or your own Home Page. Users install a browser plugin, you paste some code on your webpage, video description, or profile, and your supporters can send you Bitcoin payments using the Alby plugin.
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  • Sovereign Feeds – If you’re self hosting your own feed and mp3 files, and want to implement all of the Podcasting 2.0 features, which allows your listeners to stream sats to you in real time, this tool makes it easier to upgrade your feed and host it on your own server. It also has a feature for any musicians interested in self-hosting their music in an RSS feed so listeners can stream sats while enjoying your music. Adam Curry, the Podfather, uses this to publish his No Agenda podcast feed.

 

Fun Stuff – Make Your Own Metal Seed Back Up

Companies sell a variety of solutions for making metal back ups of seed phrases.  They generally begin at 50 bucks and up.  The idea is if your house burns down they wont.  Nice idea but you don’t need to spend a lot of money to do this.  With a simple stamping set and a 3d printed jig you can make your own.

Even if you buy everything online once the stamp kit is paid for you can make metal seed storage for about 3.50 a pop.  This is a fun project for BTC meet ups.  Here is all the stuff you need and a youtube vid with how to do it.  I have a 3d printer and it is an easy print but if you don’t you can buy one of the jigs cheap or someone in your BTC meetup likely will be into 3D printing lots of overlap. – I do receive a small commission on the items here that are on Amazon.