The Exchanges Review Part I: Easy on the Eye (and Brain)
Bitcoin exchanges are everywhere and navigating them can be confusing, while finding the right one for your needs can be impossible.

With this in mind, CoinTelegraph presents a series of articles briefly reviewing 10 of the most well-known exchanges in which their pros and cons are each placed in the spotlight.

We selected BitStamp, Bitfinex, BTC China, ICBIT, LakeBTC, hitbtc, btc-e, Kraken, ANXBTC and Cryptsy to be included in the reviews, the first of which concentrates on usability and interface.

Not so hot

Bringing up the rear in terms of functionality and interface, especially for non-Russian speaking users, is ICBIT. The exchange aims at attracting both Russian and international users by offering an English-language version, but this is both incomplete and unstable, with the same content alternating between Russian and English depending on the page visited.

A lack of features also hampers the overall usability.

Usability:2
Design:2
Ease of use:2

Bugs affect all exchanges in some form at some time, but the Bitfinex’s multi-order problem has been around longer than expected, which is why it ranks low with us in terms of usability. Specifically, a loophole allows users to “place an unlimited amount of orders on margin trading without having the liquidity to do so,” as one Reddit user writes while reporting their experience.

This added to some other technical failures “gave significant credence to the view held by some in the community that Bitfinex is not as careful as they should be when designing their exchange,” theblogchain.com notes in its review. However, low rates and improved functionality mean that it is nevertheless still useful and safe to deposit with Bitfinex.

Usability:3
Design:3
Ease of use:2

A lack of trust is also a problem plaguing BTC-e, which apart from a fairly unfriendly interface and counterintuitive layout for novice users (granted, those using the exchange are likely experienced), has been prone to bugs in the past year. Price updates also tend to be slow, and the chat feed on the right-hand side is notorious for scams, albeit also featuring some quality news material.

Usability:3
Design:3
Ease of use:2

Less dubious but with a very slow loading is Cryptsy. While the range of currencies available is impressive, pages even timed out at the time of writing. New users would most likely furthermore be deterred by the lack of information on navigation.

Usability:3
Design:1
Ease of use:1

Getting better…

Despite tempestuous times recently, the long-suffering Chinese Bitcoin scene at least has a credible exchange in the form of BTC China. The homepage is clearly set out with easy access to the mains functions, as well as displaying data required by more seasoned users.

Self-updating rates are visible at the top of the homepage and throughout, while drop-down menus ensure simplified navigation, even if the multitude of information may be distracting for some.

Usability:3
Design:3
Ease of use:3

ANXBTC has also suffered from slow running recently, and its homepage has a noticeable lack of pertinent information. The exchange comes out on top in terms of user interface, however, as having a single order book for all currencies provides maximum liquidity, as well as efficiency and ease of use from customer’s perspective.

Usability:3
Design:3
Ease of use:4

LakeBTC is gaining popularity in the space and boasts a clean design which is generally responsive. Users have noted a lack of clear signage, however, making it difficult to find the required information or services. The design can also appear somewhat ‘thin,’ with not a huge amount of links to useful data or features immediately available on the homepage.

Usability:4
Design:2
Ease of use:2

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