The first time I heard of Shapeshift I was in awe. If you don't know about Shapeshift already, here's what it does. You pick an incoming virtual currency such as ethereum and then pick an outgoing virtual currency such as bitcoin. You then fill in the bitcoin address for funds to be transferred to as well as a return address for the ethereum in case the conversion can't be done. The first few times I tried using Shapeshift I was impressed with how fast it was. There are two options when you shift. You can either select precise which gives you a quote before you start on how many ethers you will send in to give you x amount of bitcoin. This is a one time deal and done. Or you can select reusable. I thought this was really neat too. You can bookmark the transaction and use it repeatedly to convert ethereum to bitcoin. As long as you send to that same ethereum address, out pops some bitcoin into the same address.

Problems with Shapeshift. Well, the big city's bright lights have lost their allure. For starters, if you don't record each transaction yourself, you're never going to be able to find what you shifted later. Shapeshift doesn't keep track of anything. Secondly I have had this happen more and more recently. I'd sent in litecoin to change and Shapeshift never detected the confirmations. I had to raise a support ticket to get those coins back which took a few days at the time. Since then I've seen other instances where coins are sent in and confirmed but then never converted and sent out NOR refunded. You would think if an order or deposit can't be converted in a given amount of time, a refund would occur.  I have never seen this happen. Recently I sent in bitcoin to be converted to Melon coin (MLN). The bitcoin confirmed but no Melon coin has been sent for nearly 8 days now, and NO REFUND! I haven't heard a word back from support, it may take a very long time. A friend of mine also has several tickets for unshifted coin. He has 14 and 21 day old tickets with no refunds issued yet.
[error title="Editor's Note" icon="info-circle"]Coinbase and BitPay are two additional entities who have also been reported to have response times in excess of one month recently.[/error]
Another thing I didn't discover until doing a little reading was that the reusable transactions cost more than the "precise" one-time transactions. Shapeshift has determined the utility of reusable shift addresses warrants a premium.

In conclusion, I have stopped using Shapeshift entirely. They don't even mention their ever expanding support queue on their website which is highly suspicious. They have no flow control like other sites have to disable new users, limit the number of transactions, or really anything to manage things. I do give them props for implementing Segwit wallet addresses. But I won't use Shapeshift again until they get things back under control. For now, I'll stick with Bitstamp, Bittrex, Bitfinex, and many of the more well known exchanges.

[accordion] [item title="Author and Credits"] Article by Scott Emick
Image Credits: Banner Image by staff

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