What is DeFi?

DeFi – is short for “decentralized finance,” an umbrella term for various cryptocurrency or blockchain financial applications aimed at eliminating financial intermediaries.

DeFi draws inspiration from blockchain, the technology behind the digital currency bitcoin, which allows multiple organizations to keep a copy of a transaction history, meaning it is not controlled by one central source. This is important because centralized systems and human gatekeepers can limit the speed and complexity of transactions, giving users less direct control over their money. DeFi is different because it extends the use of blockchain from simple value transfers to more complex financial cases.

Bitcoin and many other digital assets differ from traditional digital payment methods such as Visa and PayPal in that they eliminate all intermediaries from transactions. When you pay by credit card for a coffee at a coffee shop, there is a financial institution standing between you and the business that controls the transaction, reserving the right to stop or suspend it and record it in its private ledger. With bitcoin, these institutions are cut off.

Direct purchases are not the only kind of transactions or contracts that big companies oversee; financial applications such as credit, insurance, crowdfunding, derivatives, rates and more are also under their control. Eliminating intermediaries from all types of transactions is one of DeFi’s main benefits. Before the idea of DeFi became known as decentralized finance, it was often referred to as “open finance.”


Most of the applications that call themselves “DeFi” are built on Ethereum, the second largest cryptocurrency platform in the world, which differs from the Bitcoin platform in that it is easier to use to create other types of decentralized applications besides simple transactions. These more complex financial use cases were even highlighted by Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin back in 2013 in the original Ethereum white paper.

It is critical to DeFi’s success that web 3 interaction gateways are intuitive, secure and accessible, while maintaining the core principle of “being your own bank. Over the past few years, we have seen radical improvements in wallets and other asset management tools, enabling investors and users to access the next generation of financial technology safely and easily.

DeFi Wallet Features

The main components of most DeFi wallets include:

core components of most DeFi wallets include:

  • Non-Custodial – Users can send and transfer funds knowing that only they have access to those funds.
  • Key-based – Under the hood, all DeFi wallets have a unique key pair. This differs from centralized wallets because users are responsible for securing their private keys, which are often entered using an initial 12-word phrase.
  • Accessible – Almost all non-centralized wallets can handle a variety of assets, with Ethereum-specific DeFi wallets allowing users to deposit ETH in tandem with stable coins such as Dai, ERC20 tokens such as KNC, and ERC721 tokens such as Axies.
  • Compatible – As mentioned above, almost all DeFi wallets are accessed by connecting a web3 wallet. Mobile wallets have begun integrating dApps browsers to make it easier to connect to DeFi apps without having to leave the app.

DeFi Wallet List

Here’s an overview of all the 2021 wallets currently in our sights.

  • MetaMask
  • MyCrypto
  • MyEtherWallet
  • TrustWallet
  • Atomic
  • Exodus