How to buy Filecoin online

Filecoin is an alternative file storage platform that's powered by the FIL token. Use this guide to find out how it encourages people to donate their disk space and why the coin has value.
By: James Knight
James Knight
When he isn’t at work, James is an avid trader and golfer who likes to travel. He once fed,… read more.
Updated: May 13, 2021
Tip: our preferred broker is, eToro: visit & create account

This page gives you an introduction on what Filecoin is, how it works, and why you might want to own the FIL coin. Here you can also compare the best trading platforms and get some tips on how to trade.

Compare where to buy Filecoin, and open an account

If you just want to get started, then the platforms below are all excellent choices. Our experts have reviewed all the top brokers to compare their features and have put together a list of recommendations. To learn more about Filecoin first, scroll down to keep reading.

1
Min. Deposit
$50
Exclusive promotion
Our score
10
Accepts customers from the USA
Offers 15 crypto coins to buy&sell including BTC, LTC, ETC, NEO and more
Trade on the world's leading social trading and investing platform
Start Trading
Description:
eToro offers a wide range of cryptos, such as Bitcoin, XRP and others, alongside crypto/fiat and crypto/crypto pairs. eToro users can connect with, learn from, and copy or get copied by other users.
Payment Methods
Wire Transfer, Bank Transfer
Full regulations list:
CySEC, FCA
2
Min. Deposit
$1
Exclusive promotion
Our score
9.3
The world's largest cryptocurrency exchange with over 2bn daily users
Innovative trading platform offering enormous range of crypto coins
Supports over 60 methods of payment including PayPal
Start Trading
Description:
Binance has grown exponentially since it was founded in 2017 and is now one of, if not the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges on the market.
Payment Methods
Cryptocurrencies
Full regulations list:
3
Min. Deposit
$20
Exclusive promotion
Our score
8.7
Margin Trading with full legal compliance
Cryptocurrency staking
Various Payment options
Start Trading
Description:
Cex.io offers exchange of fiat currency for Bitcoin Ethereum, Tether, and 23 other cryptocurrencies, as well as Bitcoin/Ethereum trading against the USD.
Payment Methods
Credit Card, Debit Card, Wire Transfer, Cryptocurrencies, Skrill
Full regulations list:

What is Filecoin?

Filecoin is like a decentralised version of Dropbox, somewhere for customers to store files without having to use cloud services owned by big corporations. Anyone with spare disk space can join Filecoin and rent it out to a customer looking for somewhere to store their data.

The FIL cryptocurrency powers Filecoin, where it acts as an incentive to good behaviour and is the currency for all transactions between customer and supplier. All those transactions are stored on a publicly available blockchain.

By bringing individuals together directly the Filecoin platform is able to cut out the middleman. This is targeted at companies like Amazon or Microsoft who traditionally dominate data storage, act as censor, and charge high prices. Filecoin was formed in 2017 and, along with other platforms like Storj and Siacoin, has led the way in using blockchain technology for decentralised storage.

How does Filecoin work?

Filecoin works by creating a marketplace that brings together suppliers of disk space with customers demanding it. Whenever a customer wants to store some of his data, the suppliers compete to offer him the lowest price. The successful supplier is rewarded after they’ve proven the data is stored securely, with all proof stored on the blockchain and so visible to everyone.

Finally, there is a third group of people who use their computer power to retrieve files whenever the customer wants to access her data. Those retrievers earn a transaction fee as well, and every transaction is done in FIL with a record of all payments also stored on the blockchain. As the suppliers only receive their fee once the data is secure, FIL is the incentive for everyone to act in good faith.

How to buy Filecoin online – a step-by-step guide

Step 1. Find an exchange

An exchange is the best place to buy Filecoin in the UK. You can usually fund your account with a fiat currency (like GBP or USD), and then use that to buy any other cryptocurrency. Generally it’s a good idea to transfer some money into Bitcoin or Ethereum, because they can be swapped for virtually every other coin available. Here are two of the top exchanges around:

  • Binance: One of the biggest names in the cryptocurrency trading space, Binance allows users to trade hundreds of different cryptocurrencies, including Filecoin. Open an account right now.
  • BitMEX: A peer-to-peer cryptocurrency exchange platform that allows for trading using Bitcoin (BTC). All accounts also provide users with an online wallet in which to store their coins. Open an account today.

Step 2. Sign up and fund your account

Most exchanges require you to sign up and create an account before you can buy crypto. This is a simple process but you’ll usually need some form of photo ID to confirm your identity. This can vary across platforms but normally a passport or driving licence is all you need.

Step 3. Purchase

If you used Bitcoin to fund your account, just search for the FIL/BTC crypto pair and you can execute your trade straight away. The process is the same whichever crypto you’ve deposited, you just need to find the current FIL price and click ‘buy’.

Step 4. (Optional) Get a suitable wallet

You can get a wallet to hold your coins securely. This isn’t necessary, most exchanges let you store your coins with them, but you may want to do it if you’re going to hold your Filecoin for a long time. There are plenty of websites that offer wallets, but if you want to create one straight away you might want to consider these two wallet providers:

  • CoolWallet: As a hardware wallet, CoolWallet stores private keys to secure your coins and offers support for some of the top cryptocurrencies around. Join Coolwallet today >
  • Guarda Wallet: Guarda is an open-source cryptocurrency wallet that lets you hold a variety of cryptos in one place. On the platform, you can store all the most prominent coins,  in addition to thousands of tokens and a large number of stablecoins. Sign up for Guarda Wallet >
1
Min. Deposit
$1
Exclusive promotion
Our score
10
The world's largest cryptocurrency exchange with over 2bn daily users
Innovative trading platform offering enormous range of crypto coins
Supports over 60 methods of payment including PayPal
Start Trading
Payment Methods:
Cryptocurrencies
Full Regulations:

How to trade Filecoin – a step-by-step guide

Step 1. Find a broker

You should make sure to check your broker offers Filecoin before signing up. There are a lot of brokers out there where you can trade cryptocurrency, but Filecoin is a smaller crypto and isn’t available on many platforms yet. eToro and Robinhood are two of the top options to check first.

Step 2. Deposit money

You can fund your broker account with fiat currencies, but you should always check the trading fees before you start. These vary by broker and you want to minimise fees to make sure you get the best value for money when you trade.

Step 3. Decide how you’d like to trade

There are plenty of different ways to trade cryptocurrency. Usually, you’re speculating on the price moves of your chosen coin rather than owning it outright. One example of this is spread betting, where you try to predict how the market is going to move.

Step 4. Start trading 

Now that you’ve set up your account, you can start trading. If you’re new to trading or to cryptocurrency, it might be a good idea to start with a demo account to practice without the risk of losing money. 

In terms of trading strategies, it depends on your outlook for Filecoin. Positive traders who think the coin is going to go up in price can take a long position and try to profit from the increase. If you think the opposite, that FIL is going to go down, you can decide to ‘short’ it and back the price to fall.

Another option for more experienced traders is to use leverage. Trading with leverage can be dangerous for beginners because it significantly increases the risk of losing your money, but it allows you to trade much larger amounts while only putting up a percentage of the funds yourself. This is called trading with the ‘margin’ and can lead to extreme results in both directions.

1
Min. Deposit
$50
Exclusive promotion
Our score
10
Accepts customers from the USA
Offers 15 crypto coins to buy&sell including BTC, LTC, ETC, NEO and more
Trade on the world's leading social trading and investing platform
Start Trading
Description:
eToro offers a wide range of cryptos, such as Bitcoin, XRP and others, alongside crypto/fiat and crypto/crypto pairs. eToro users can connect with, learn from, and copy or get copied by other users.
Payment Methods
Wire Transfer, Bank Transfer
Full regulations list:
CySEC, FCA

Still undecided?

It’s not always easy to make a decision when it comes to an area as competitive as cryptocurrency. Here are some of the pros and cons of Filecoin you can use to help you make a choice. Finally, there are some questions to think about below as well.

Pros

  • Filecoin is an early market leader in decentralised file sharing
  • FIL is quite inexpensive and more stable than some other coins
  • You can earn extra FIL by participating in the platform

Cons

To help you decide, here are three more questions to think about before you invest in Filecoin.

1. Is it a good time to buy Filecoin?

It depends on your goals and whether you want to actually use the platform. If you do, or you just want to get in on the ground floor because you expect it to go up in value long term, then there’s no reason to wait. Just remember to think about the competition from other decentralised platforms and the established industry as well.

On the other hand, if you just want to get stuck in to short term trading you should start by looking at the current FIL price to decide whether it represents a good opportunity. Then you can think about using some trading methods to take advantage. You should also have a look at the latest market analysis for signs of anything that could affect the FIL price, and you can find that here:

2. What problem does Filecoin solve, and what are the coin’s investment prospects?

Filecoin makes file storage cheaper and more democratic by taking away the power of global corporations to act as gatekeepers. Instead, it provides a decentralised platform built around individuals, with the FIL coin acting as both a payment mechanism and the incentive for everyone to act in the general interest.

FIL’s investment prospects depends on how well the Filecoin platform grows. One challenge is going to be the fact the traditional industry it wants to disrupt is convenient and popular, while Filecoin itself has been embroiled in some controversies in its early years. It’s had disputes with its own miners and faced a legal challenge over how it distributed coins to its employees.

Those early challenges are in the rear view mirror but it’s a reminder to always do your research. There are other cryptocurrencies based on file sharing platforms as well as an established industry run by some of the biggest companies in the world. You can keep track of all their developments by following the latest news below:

Filecoin FIL/USD extended its correction from the record highs above $230, registered on 21st April, and the current price of this cryptocurrency stands around $52. If the price of Bitcoin falls below the $30000 support level, it would be a firm “sell” signal, and this would add further pressure…
The world’s largest distributed blockchain storage network Filecoin (FIL) has agreed to partner with VideoCoin to integrate decentralized video processing. They want to enable a marketplace for videos with nonfungible tokens (NFTs). The aim is to solve major issues in video authentication. Filecoin offers a low-cost option…

3. Do you want to hold Filecoin for the long term?

Filecoin is a good investment if you want to use its file sharing service as FIL is the only cryptocurrency that can be used on the platform. Otherwise, you should think about FIL’s long term prospects versus the competition. Any sign of increased regulation of the traditional players in cloud storage could be good news for alternatives like Filecoin, so you should stay on top of the latest news.

Considerations for a long term investment strategy

The two main things to consider are the current state of established file-sharing companies and the decentralised competition. If you think those look positive for Filecoin, you should sign up for an exchange right away. You might also want to think about getting a wallet to store your coins, particularly if you don’t intend to use them to pay for any of Filecoin’s services. 

Considerations for a short term trading strategy

If you want to buy and sell Filecoin in the short-term to benefit from its price fluctuations, the broader market forces are much less important. Before you start trading you should make sure to pick a broker with low trading fees. It’s also a good idea to learn how to read charts and perform technical analysis on the FIL price.


Fact-checking & references

Our editors fact-check all content to ensure compliance with our strict editorial policy. The information in this article is supported by the following reliable sources.

Risk disclaimer

Invezz is a place where people can find reliable, unbiased information about finance, trading, and investing – but we do not offer financial advice and users should always carry out their own research. The assets covered on this website, including stocks, cryptocurrencies, and commodities can be highly volatile and new investors often lose money. Success in the financial markets is not guaranteed, and users should never invest more than they can afford to lose. You should consider your own personal circumstances and take the time to explore all your options before making any investment. Read our risk disclaimer >

James Knight
Financial writer
When he isn’t at work, James is an avid trader and golfer who likes to travel. He once fed, rode, and ate an ostrich all on… read more.