In brief

  • Robinhood is a trading platform that wants to "democratize finance."
  • Its crypto app, Robinhood Crypto, is proving popular.

Popular trading platform Robinhood today announced it has gained six million new customers for its crypto app so far in 2021. 

The crypto product of Robinhood launched three years ago and was gaining an average of 200,000 new users a month in 2020, according to a blog post by the trading platform. 

But this year the app’s popularity has surged—and last month alone over 3 million people signed up to use the app. 

“The numbers are clear: 2021 has started with a crypto bang,” the company said. The blog post added that the average transaction size is around $500 on the app. 

Robinhood claims to democratize trading by allowing those typically unfamiliar with markets to buy and sell stocks. 

Its crypto product prides itself on doing the same: users can buy and sell Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Bitcoin SV, Dogecoin, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, and Litecoin. Users can buy and sell crypto but they cannot withdraw digital assets. 

The platform made (mostly negative) headlines during the GameStop saga this year. It temporarily halted purchases of “meme stocks” when amateur traders were snapping up the video game retailer’s dying shares

Shortly after, Robinhood Crypto also placed restrictions on crypto buys during a sudden surge in demand for both Bitcoin and Dogecoin, partly spurred on by the Twitter antics of the the world’s richest man, Elon Musk. 

This led some in the crypto community to criticize the company’s claims of “democratizing finance.”

Though by the looks of it, the app has found a niche and has gotten off to a big start in 2021.