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A Quick Intro to Building a Crypto App

Jun 10 2021
CTO at Wolfpack Digital

As digital banking and wealth management platforms are becoming stronger, cryptocurrency is catching more and more hype and it’s getting real. Despite the jokes about the volatility (and Dogecoin), the amount invested keeps on growing year-over-year.

On top of that, with the rise of stablecoins, which offer less risk due to the lower volatility, we believe that investing in Crypto is going to become even more popular.

If in the past governments were not very open to cryptocurrency, with more recent introductions of stablecoins, such as the Yuan Coin and others, the administration systems are making a statement that this is changing, and big financial institutions, like banks, should adapt to that.



Everything you need to know about building a crypto app

Well, to build a fintech app, you need several components, to build a cryptocurrency fintech app, you'll need to add a few more on top of that.

Here are the key components that you'll need to build a basic Fintech Crypto app:

  • KYC and AML onboarding process - this is where you will collect information about your users.
  • A wallet - this is where you will keep the cryptocurrency.
  • A FIAT account - this is for the FIAT currency.
  • A service that lets you exchange from FIAT to Crypto, and the other way around.
  • A brilliant design - this is what will make your app shiny 🌟.


KYC (know your customer) and AML (anti-money laundering) onboarding process

In order to comply with the regulatory requirements, you will need to gather information about your customers and the source of their income. Fortunately, this process has been fairly standardized so it should be pretty straightforward what information you should collect based on the market you wish to release in.

During this process, you will have to verify the identity of your customers as well. We recommend using ID verification services like Onfido, Getid, or similar - they have great documentation and are quite developer friendly.


Wallet and exchange service 

This is perhaps the most complex part where there are multiple choices:

  • A self-hosted Wallet and exchange service.

  • Using an existing service.

A self-hosted Wallet and exchange can be beneficial, but at the beginning, you will stumble upon the chicken and egg issue (where you'll need users to have transactions and transactions to get users), similar to the marketplaces.

The recommended approach, at least short-term, is to use an existing service like Binance.



A FIAT account

If you want to keep the FIAT funds within your ecosystem, it would be good to have support for FIAT as well. Note: you should take into account that the transfer from FIAT to Crypto (or the other way around) needs to happen quite fast.

There are many options here, like integrating with a custodian bank or using a BaaS (Banking as a Service) provider such as Railsbank, what is important is the ability to transfer the funds from Fiat to Crypto, or the other way around, very fast.


A brilliant design

As the market is getting more and more mature, with many great players, you will need to stay competitive, and not just in terms of pricing, but in terms of User Interface and User Experience. We believe that a brilliant design is key, in attracting your users and keeping them engaged.


Key Takeaways

  • As digital banking and wealth management platforms are becoming stronger, so is Crypto gaining more and more interest.
  • Building a Cryptocurrency app might not be so complex on the surface, but it has its challenges in terms of integrating with the best services.
  • The key components of building a crypto app are: onboarding, a crypto wallet, Fiat account, and a Fiat <> Crypto exchange.
  • A brilliant design will play an important role in attracting and keeping your users engaged.
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