Gemini, the crypto exchange founded by the Winklevoss twins, on Tuesday unveiled an app intended to make it easier to buy and sell Bitcoin and other virtual currencies.
The timing of the app launch is a bit curious since the crypto market has been in a vicious bear market in recent months and, unlike a year ago, people are not clamoring for quicker ways to weigh Bitcoin.
The app, however, has been in the works for years, according to Cameron Winklevoss who stressed that Gemini is playing a long game in the crypto markets, and that the company has always prioritized security over being first.
In an interview with Fortune, Winklevoss added that an app has remained atop Gemini’s list of requests from customers, who have till now relied on the company’s mobile website.
As for the app itself, I test drove it by purchasing a tiny amount of Bitcoin, and found it to be fast and well-designed. Like other such apps, it lets customers’ quickly fund their Gemini trading accounts within the app by means of online banking log-in tools.
The company is also talking up the app’s multiple layers of security, which include not only two-factor authentication from the security app Authy, but a requirement the customer remember an additional PIN number. Other features include the ability to set recurring buy orders, and a “Buy the Cryptoverse” option, which lets customers purchase a basket of all five of the cryptos listed on Gemini.
More broadly, Gemini intends for the app to be consistent with its by-the-books approach to security and compliance—an approach the Winklevoss twins believe is paying off as the SEC cracks down on crypto firms that thumbed their nose at regulators. Gemini also recently unveiled a “stable coin” whose value is tightly tied to the greenback.
Overall, it remains to be seen how many people will have an appetite for digital currency in the coming year, especially after prices have fallen over 80% for most assets. This includes Bitcoin, which is currently trading around $3500
Unsurprisingly, Winklevoss is optimistic, predicting that 2019 will be a year of building and innovation for the crypto world. As for price, he wouldn’t predict whether Bitcoin has hit bottom but did sound a note of optimism.
“‘Have we hit the bottom?’ is an impossible question,” he said. “The price of $3500 looks more real than when we hit it last. If this isn’t the bottom, we’re getting to a point where the Bitcoin price feels closer to reality than when it was at $20K.”