Back in 2016, I was stupid/wise/lucky enough to participate in some initial coin offering the went to the so-called moon. I did cash enough out to make it all worthwhile (but of course much less than it could’ve been if only…). The rest I left in the altcoins, hoping for their heydays to come back. So far this has been fruitless, and while things are going up and down, doing nothing seems to have a high chance of leading to it all bleed to death I am afraid.

Therefore, time has come to try something different, with the following options to be considered:

  1. Cash it all out
  2. Keep things in crypto, yet spread the risk (e.g. using a service such as HodlBot)
  3. Get crazy and indulge in a Get Rich or Die Tryin’ Trading style.
  4. Any combination of the above

Since it is clear that I do not possess the skills to make the trades that make the get rich part happen, some help would be required for option 3, so the quest for the proverbial magic bullet started. In this quest, I encountered ETBot.io. ETBot.io appears to be the consumer-aimed subsidiary of EndoTech, an AI trading company focusing on institutional clients. EndoTech claims by investing repeatedly in their Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence teams, EndoTech is consistently able to get in front of the market price movements and deliver to high value clients and corporations levels of return which you simply cannot find anywhere else.

Big words, but if the performance (from +102% for BTC Beta up to +1920 up since January 1st 2018) are representative, these big words are justified. So I tried to find out what third party sources say and if this is mainly positive or negative(/scam):

  1. There is a single (negative) review on Trustpilot. Although it seems to me that the author did not exac (and my experience with support is much better than described), the author does make valid points regarding not being able to see/test what you are investing in and very limited information being available online.
  2. I can find a single topic regarding EndoTech on BitcoinTalk, yet with only 2 reactions and without useful additional information.
  3. There are reviews on Valforex.com, itisREVIEWED.com & bestbinaryoptionswatch.com yet they all seem alike and have the same TV commercial appearance, the discussions underneath seem legit and in line with my experiences though.

It might be a scam, it might not be a scam yet not worth it’s price and it might be a golden ticket. Long story short: I will give it a shot trying to find out which of these and write down my experiences along the way.

For full transparency: I did apply for an affiliate account, yet will refrain from making my blog posts commercial adds and keep things neutral. However, if you do intend to start using ETBot, I would very much appreciate it if you signup after using one of my links or supply my Referral ID (203) in the sign-up form. I won’t cost you extra and it does provide me with a small additional reward for my writing in addition to help structuring my thoughts.

Signing up to ETBot.io

As was to be expected, nothing special here. Signing up can be done using a simple signup form, you receive a confirmation mail and can login afterwards. When logged in, an extra profile page becomes available, in which exchange API keys can be provided and the current subscription status can be checked.

Purchasing a subscription

After signing up, a subscription can be purchased. There are 3 license types: Beginner, Simple & Advanced & also 3 time periods: 3 Months, 6 Months and 12 Months. Although there is a comparison page between the 3 license type, only difference seem to be the choice of portfolio (only BTC is allowed for Beginner) and maximum balance to have connected to the bot. Exact nature of the balance condition is somewhat unclear though: on the same page, the web page states both “Unlimited balance connection” under the Advanced license, yet also a foot note that states “A maximum balance connection of 5,000 USDT/USD is permitted to be connected per account;”.

For my test, I picked the cheapest (yet still kinda expensive) option: 3 Months, Beginner for $250.00. Subscription can be paid using Paypal or Bitcoin. I chose BTC to fulfil my payment, which lead to the following results:

  • A confirmation email arrived promptly
  • I started to receive market emails (for unclear reasons for the ETH Beta portfolio…)
  • An ominous countdown clock appeared on my profile page

ETBot countdown

Linking

The ominous clock provides a real sense of urgency to connect to an exchange and make that artificial intelligence work it’s ass of before running out of time. Fortunately, the process of creating and connecting API keys is well documented on the Process of linking the API keys is well documented on the ETBot.io website and it is made clear how the API keys can be configured that they can be used to trade, yet not to withdraw funds.

When filling in the API keys on the ETBot website, 3 sets of API key credentials can be provided. For each of the credentials, the strategy type (Alpha or Beta) and portfolio type (Bitcoin or Ethereum can be selected). This is somewhat confusing, since my Beginner license should only allow me to pick either Alpha or Beta and restricts me to ETH.

ALPHA or BETA?

ETBot offers two types of strategy: Alpha (You are a profit maximizing α investor, who is willing to accept the same or slightly more risk) and Beta (You are a risk conscious β investor with high sensitivity to losses). In line with my introduction, I choose Alpha.

BTC or ETH?

Since the Beginner license only allows for Bitcoin, I selected BTC here.

Results

However, after entering the API key details, a whole lot of nothing happened. I was expecting some confirmation that things had been set up correctly (or incorrectly, yet some feedback at the very least…). After waiting for a day, I decided to send an email to support. No reaction here for the better part of the day and I was already getting worried.

Late in the evening, I did get a reply from support that it was still weekend (their weekend is apparently Friday-Saturday due to being located in Israel) and the connection was to be made the next day. This next day, I did not get any confirmation or feedback or whatsoever either, yet I did notice that trades were being made. First a small amount (test transaction?) followed by larger amounts. I expected things to be more automated at the back-end side, yet it did provide me an opportunity to get acquainted with support. In my experience, support (Joseph) does react quickly and to the point.

Scam or Legit?

At least some legitimate things are happening at the ETBot.io’s office. The support department is reachable and there is a system in place that facilitates automated trades. If there is any sophisticated, continuously improved machine learning algorithms behind these trades or some simple heuristic with very sophisticated marketing, that’s impossible to tell. We can only hope that the results are in line with the marketing and not be unlucky and not be caught when the ETBot.io results regress to the mean/unfortunately happen to be in the few months the system is actually losing.

Is it worth the subscription price?

For the subscription price, trades are being made and portfolio & market updates are sent out by mail. If the trades are actually smart with an expected value that is considerably better than the alternatives or a result of a monkey throwing darts, that is impossible to say (I already feel it coming that this will be a repeating conclusion…).

I haven’t got the slightest idea here. With the cheapest package and a starting capital of $2125 to work with, a return of at least 11.7% in 3 months would be required to break even. Time will tell if we end up in the plus and what would have happened if we had taken another approach.