Huobi is a fantastic exchange. It has a huge variety of service and supported cryptocurrencies that rivals other top exchanges.
- 500+ supported cryptos
- Excellent customer service
- Established in 2013 and never hacked
- Not available in the US
- Largely unregulated
Huobi Review Overview
Out of the many hundreds of cryptocurrency exchanges, Huobi Global is rated as one of the best. Find out the pros and cons in this Huobi review to see if it is a good choice for you.
Huobi is what you could call a veteran cryptocurrency exchange. That is to say it has been around since 2013 when it was founded in Beijing, China by Leon Li. Leon is an experienced computer engineer.
Under Leon’s guidance the business flourished. In fact it led the exchange to quickly rise to become one of the top cryptocurrency exchanges. However as the regulations in China started changing, Huobi was forced to move its service elsewhere.
As a result Huobi is ended up incorporating in the Seychelles. Additionally it gradually opened up offices in Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, and Japan.
Huobi have 3 websites to cater for different jurisdictions:
Primarily most of their clientele is based in Asia.
Huobi Review: Services
Since Huobi is an old exchange its team have developed quite a lot of services. In fact it rivals some of the top competitors with the amount of services it offers.
Huobi Services Include
- Simplified exchange area
- P2P market
- Spot, margin and futures trading
- Trading bot for automating trades
- Over the counter (OTC) brokerage
- Staking and other ways to earn passive income
- Crypto loans
- Mining pools
- Polkadot slot auctions
- Crypto wallet
- Cloud service
Huobi Exchange Area
Similarly to most exchanges Huobi has the standard simplified exchange area:
However you can only buy a small handful of cryptos using this feature. That includes all the main cryptocurrencies like for example Tether, Bitcoin and Ethereum and 25 other cryptos.
On the other hand you can use 60 different fiat currencies to purchase. The currency you select will automatically update and notify you of the payment methods you can use.
If you decided to use bank transfer that is the cheapest method to purchase your crypto. However you should note that when the funds appear in your account you will have HUSD. This is Huobi’s stable coin which is pegged 1-to-1 with the US dollar. You can use it to trade and buy any other crypto.
Most importantly what you should keep in mind is that Bitcoin and Ethereum have the most trading pairs. So if you are interested in a particular crypto you should check out the trading pairs first.
Like that you can buy the right crypto straight off to trade with. Otherwise you will end up paying more on fees because you bought an incompatible crypto.
If you do not see the payment method you prefer you might want to check out the P2P market.
You can select the fiat currency you want to pay with. After that you should select the crypto you want to buy to see the options available to you.
Huobi Supported Countries
Some services are only available in certain parts of the world and not others. This is mostly due to regulations.
Most importantly for you to know is that Huobi is not licensed and regulated across most jurisdictions. Even though they offer their services almost everywhere. However they are in the process of trying to attain licenses. Like for example in Singapore Huobi’s licence is under review by The Monetary Authority of Singapore.
Additionally Huobi also moved its spot trading business to Gibraltar. This was approved by the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission.
One jurisdiction they do not support is the US because the US has strict regulations. They also withdrew from Singapore. However as mentioned they are waiting for their license there.
If you intend to use fiat to deposit and withdraw then you will need to complete KYC. That is Know Your Customer information. You will need to submit either your:
- passport or
- driver’s license or
- identity card
After that you will need to go through face verification. This will ensure Huobi that you are who you say you are.
Face verification is a standard method of verification on crypto exchanges. Additionally the process is automated to make things a lot easier.
The whole process of verification is pretty smooth, but it does take some time. Similarly to other exchanges Huobi have to manually verify your account after you submit your information. However in comparison to other exchange Huobi does take longer to approve accounts.
Depositing into your Huobi account is free. To clarify that goes whether you use fiat or crypto to make a deposit.
However as is standard across any exchange using a credit card comes with extra fees. These fees are charged by the third party providers.
Usually it is 3.5% for any purchase using a credit card which is a standard rate. However on Huobi if your credit card is issued from any EEA country or the UK you pay 1%.
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden.
Additionally Huobi will charge more fees to execute the transaction. If you want to pay the least amount of fees possible you have two options. You can either stick to depositing with crypto or you use bank transfer.
Huobi have an almost exhaustive range of different payment methods. However not all payment methods are available in every country because of licensing and regulation issues. So it is best if you check all your options first before you make a decision.
There are withdrawal fees with the Huobi exchange and they vary. This would depend which service or withdrawal method you use. Additionally you will have a withdrawal limit.
The values are updated every so often because of changes in market conditions. As a result you will need to check the fees and withdrawal limit before you execute the withdrawal. You can easily check this information by:
- Choosing ‘Balance’
- From the drop down menu select ‘Deposit and Withdrawal’
- Choose the crypto you want to withdraw and press ‘Withdraw’
Here you will see all the relevant information as you can see in the screenshot below.
Huobi Trading Fees
On the other hand there is a scheme on Huobi where you can get a discount on fees. If you hold Huobi Tokens you can qualify for a discounted rate between 10-65%. This is by no means new. In fact it is a similar system to what other exchanges have implemented on their platforms as well.
Personal Accounts Fee Discounts
|Fee rate (in HT)
|0.18% (10% discount)
|0.16% (20% discount)
|0.12% (40% discount)
|0.09% (55% discount)
|0.08% (60% discount)
|0.07% (65% discount)
Professional Account Fee Discounts
Meanwhile professional traders that have higher trading volumes have different trading rates. They are required to trade a minimum amount of crypto. The trading minimum amount is denominated in BTC, but they can trade any cryptos.
Additionally to the trading minimum amount, traders need to hold a minimum of 2,000 HT to qualify.
|30 day trading volume
|Maker / Taker
|0.0362% / 0.0462%
|0.0294% / 0.0420%
|0.0294% / 0.0378%
|0.0252% / 0.0336%
|0.0224% / 0.0308%
|0.0210% / 0.0294%
|0.0168% / 0.0252%
|0.0126% / 0.0210%
|0.0097% / 0.0193%
Huobi Review: Huobi Support
A lot of cryptocurrency exchanges tend to have issues with customer support in one way or another. Either they are slow or support does not help to resolve customer issues. To clarify this is also the case for the larger exchanges.
However with Huobi people are very happy with customer support overall. In fact even though they have millions of clients, they do not have many public complaints online. So even though Huobi has a poor review on Trustpilot, they only had 107 public complaints since early 2019.
You can contact customer support either by live chat or email. Their live chat customer service representatives are responsive and hop into the conversation within minutes.
Although Binance live chat is not bad, on the other hand they are not as quick as Huobi staff. So this gives you a bit of an idea about the Huobi support team. Additionally they are quick to respond to emails also.
The Huobi Over The Counter brokerage service is available to institutional clients and high net worth individuals. Additionally to over the counter trading you can also lend and borrow.
This kind of service specifically caters for large crypto holders aka crypto whales. This is because they can move and destabilise the crypto markets with one trade. So to avoid this they can use the OTC service.
This is an exclusive service. As a result you will have direct access to an experienced team member on a one-to-one basis. Additionally you will have the ability to trade major cryptocurrencies, stable coins and fiat.
The trades are made promptly with the utmost security. At the same time this service adheres to strict Hong Kong anti-money laundering compliance protocols. Moreover they give you a real-time market quote and you are not charged any transaction fees.
If you are eligible for this service you can contact the brokerage service. They are available either by Email, Telegram, WeChat or via a customer service hotline. You can check how to contact Huobi OTC here.
However it is a fairly good wallet because it is software based. This means you have the option to have 100% control of your private keys. No one else has access to them and that also includes Huobi themselves.
Regardless we recommend that you only keep small amounts of crypto on the wallet. This is because hackers have compromised other hot wallets with malware called BHUNT. So you should store most of your funds on a more secure wallet.
The Huobi wallet itself is quite user friendly. However it is not as easy to use as some other wallet apps. Like for example the Binance Lite version of the Binance app. With some time you will adjust quite quickly to the way the Huobi wallet works.
On the other hand the Huobi wallet is pretty quick and responsive. So you will get a good user experience overall.
What is also nice about it the wallet has support for a large amount of cryptocurrencies. To clarify it is not usually that common among wallets to support so many coins.
Set Up the Huobi Wallet
You want to make sure you set up your wallet well so that it is secure. It is pretty easy to set up.
Here is what you will see as soon as you download the wallet. What you will need to do is go to the wallet icon marked.
Next the wallet will ask you to select the main chain. To clarify this is the cryptocurrency you are going to use the most or the crypto with the most funds.
After that you should select to create a standard wallet.
As a result you will have better security than if you chose to have a cloud wallet. Alternatively if you already have a wallet and want to import it you can do so also.
After pressing to create a standard wallet you should save your 12 word seed phrase. Most importantly you should store it in a secure place.
The wallet should looks like this:
Here you can easily send and receive your crypto funds. In this case, here I can only receive Ether. So I will need to add wallets of other cryptos to receive and send other cryptocurrencies. You will need to set up a seed phrase for each wallet.
If you would like to change the currency in which your wallet is denominated you can do so easily. You will need to go to your profile on the bottom right.
After that you should go to ‘Settings’ and then ‘Default Currency’. All your cryptos will display in the currency of your choice.
Huobi Review: Security
So far Huobi have a fantastic track record with security. Since their inception in 2013 they have not been hacked. However you should note that every so often crypto users experience specifically targeted attacks.
In fact a Chinese investor lost 5.4 BTC from his Huobi wallet due to his own negligence.
This was a one off targeted attack that he could have easily avoided. Unfortunately the investor did not bother setting up additional security features. He did not set up an email and he did not have 2FA activated.
With Huobi you can set up:
- 2-Factor Authentication. We suggest you do not use phone 2FA since that is the least secure method.
- Whitelist withdrawal addresses. This is to say you can only withdraw using your approved withdrawal addresses. The platform will take some time to activate your whitelist. This means that it will stall any thieves from taking your crypto off the exchange.
- Anti-phishing code. You can set this code so that all emails you receive from Huobi will have this code. As a result you can easily figure out if the email is a genuine Huobi email.
Huobi do not give much information about the methods they use on their end to secure client funds. However we know they store a portion of client funds in a multi-signature cold wallet. This is definitely one of the best practices when it comes to security.
Huobi Review: Safety Provisions Funds
Huobi have the Huobi Security Reserve. This is set up to compensate clients just in case of a hacker steals funds from the exchange.
It is set up similarly to the Binance SAFU fund. So instead of using a third party for insurance, Huobi set up an internal fund. It works by Huobi taking a percentage of funds from their profits and topping up the fund. As a result the fund will have a total of 20,000 Bitcoin in its reserves.
From some of the top exchanges this is definitely a nice thing to see. Most importantly because the amount of online hacks have increased considerably. So it gives clients and potential clients some additional security.
However you should note that any security breaches that happen out of your own negligence are not compensated. This is only for hacks that happen despite all the precautions taken by Huobi.
Huobi Review: Wash Trading
One of the negatives which we feel we need to mention is that Huobi was caught wash trading. Wash trading means that a service artificially inflates its trading volumes. So the service gives the impression there is more trading happening on its service.
This accusation was made by Bitwise Asset Management. However as soon as the Huobi team were approached with the report they promptly investigated.
Although it was not a great look for them at the time, Huobi did address the problem. Moreover we are happy to say they never had another accusation of wash trading since that time.
Huobi Review: Conclusion
To conclude this Huobi review we think overall Huobi is a very good exchange. It is not a surprise that it rivals other top exchanges. Hence why it is regularly featured within a top 10 list of exchanges. In fact it is in the 6th position on CoinMarketCap.
Huobi’s reputation did come into question when it was accused of wash trading. However it was quickly addressed by the team and there has not been another incident since.
One of its main drawbacks is that it is largely unregulated. However this exchange has its clients best interest set as a priority. After all its reputation is at stake with or without having a license.
In fact so far it has had no security breaches which is a huge plus. Additionally Huobi have a safety provisions funds just in case. This is definitely a huge factor for a lot of potential clients when they are looking for an exchange. After all it gives any client additional security to know they will get compensated just in case something goes wrong.
Huobi also have an extremely large selection of cryptos available on their platform. In fact it rivals the selection of some other top exchanges like for example Binance and KuCoin. It also has a large selection of supported coins on its wallet. Additionally Huobi offers a range of different services.
Moreover one of the best thing about this exchange is customer support. They are efficient which is nice to see. Most of the top exchanges have goodish customer service, but Huobi is definitely one of the best.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Huobi available in USA?
Is Huobi safe?
Does Huobi require KYC?
Has Huobi ever been hacked?
What are the pros and cons of Huobi?
· 500+ supported cryptos
· Excellent customer service
· Full range of different services
· Established in 2013 and has never been hacked
· Not available in the US
· Largely unregulated