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Ledger Nano S Review: Pros and Cons

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As cryptocurrencies see increasingly widespread adoption, there are many more people taking an interest in investing in them. However, buying crypto assets is one thing, but storing them securely is a different matter entirely. You only need look at the news surrounding cryptocurrencies to see that storing assets on an exchange long term is risky. In the first three months of 2019 alone, exchanges lost around $356 million dollars to hackers1. This is where hardware wallets like the Ledger Nano S come in. This article will provide a brief Ledger Nano S review summarising the pros and cons of the device.

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Ledger Nano S Review: Pros and Cons
Image by athree23 from Pixabay


The Ledger Nano S is considered a “cold” storage wallet and is designed to store cryptocurrencies securely off the internet. It works by managing your private keys, meaning whenever any transactions are made, you need to first verify and sign them off using the device. The first plus of the device is that it is relatively cheap; you can find examples of the latest United States prices of the Ledger Nano S on Amazon here. If you are new to cryptocurrency this is a good relatively inexpensive cold storage option.

Compact Size and Good Build Quality

Out of the box, the product is compact, small enough to carry with you on a keychain. It will easily fit into your pocket and isn’t cumbersome to take along with you if your needs require it. It also has a good build quality, a solid plastic body with a twisting metal cover, so you need not worry about easily breaking it. Furthermore it requires no batteries to operate, you just plug it into your device and it is ready to go.

Ease of Use

The Ledger Nano S is very easy to set up. All you need to do is plug it into your computer with the USB cable provided and follow the instructions on the device screen. You will be prompted to create a 4-8 digit pin code and write down your 24 word recovery phrase. Then you install the Ledger Live software which you use to manage your device and apps. The process is not very complicated, and requires very little technical know how. You can find detailed instructions on how to set up the device on Ledger Nano’s official website here or by looking for instructional videos on youtube. The one by The Crypto Dad is one such example.

A Wide Range of Cryptocurrencies are Supported

The Ledger Nano S also supports a large variety of cryptocurrencies. At the time of writing it supports 22 cryptocurrencies natively and a further 1000 using additional third party apps. So rest assured whatever cryptocurrency you might want to invest in it is more than likely covered. However to make sure you can, you check out a comprehensive list of the currencies supported on the Ledger Nano S’ official website here. This list has a useful search feature making finding supported assets easily and will also tell you what third party wallets are required if necessary for storage.


Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

App Storage Considerations

For its purpose, it is quite difficult to think of any cons. The main issue with the Ledger Nano S is that if you want to invest in many different types of cryptocurrencies and want to keep all the relevant apps installed concurrently for convenience, you will need to factor in the device memory. This is because the type of coin plays a significant role in how much device memory is taken up by the apps. The apps for Bitcoin based cryptocurrencies (like Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin), occupy little space as they are all very similar. Therefore, you can install many of these bitcoin based apps at the same time.

If you intend to buy a mixture of bitcoin and altcoins you will be limited to fewer apps that can be stored concurrently. Although there is a way around this in that you can install apps and store your coins and then uninstall them. Your private keys will remain on the device, but to reaccess these funds you will need to reinstall the relevant apps. Many people however are uncomfortable with the idea of deleting wallets containing their digital assets and want easy access to them.

If this sounds like you, you may need to buy more than one device and this could get expensive. The newer model Ledger Nano X mitigates this problem allowing for the storage of many more cryptocurrencies concurrently. Although the Ledger Nano X is also more expensive. So please keep these factors in mind when making your choice. Be sure to use the comparison page on their website to help you make your choice.

No Wireless Feature

Also, the Ledger Nano S lacks wireless unlike the company’s newer model Ledger Nano X. However, this feature might not be essential for some people if they just want a safe storage medium not intended for everyday use. For some people having wireless included on the device is counterintuitive anyway. This is because it makes the device less secure defeating the object of storing cryptocurrencies offline in the first place.

Ledger Nano S Review: Conclusion

If you feel inclined to buy a dedicated hardware wallet for cryptocurrencies, the Ledger Nano S is a great option. Its low cost, ease of use, support for many coins as well as its compact size are all positive points. While it doesn’t have wireless capabilities like the newer Ledger Nano X, this may suit some people who don’t want to pay extra for this feature. Also consider what cryptocurrencies you intend to store as this will affect how many apps will be able to install at once. We hope you found this Ledger Nano S review helpful and informative!

Ledger Nano S Availability

You can find the Ledger Nano S at Amazon in the following countries

You can also buy the Ledger Nano S worldwide directly from the Ledger store. However keep in mind that you will have to take into account delivery costs and customs duties dependent on your location.

References and Useful Additional Resources

  3. Rex Kneisley (AKA The Crypto Dad)

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