Cryptocurrencies are growing. Despite the state of the markets, that will always be a fact. We do however know that there are a number of factors that seem to be getting in the way of cryptocurrencies making it large.
Firstly, let me define what I mean by big – I am referring to popularity, simply because I believe that in order to become big, cryptocurrencies need to be popular and loose the ‘un-cool’ name they have for themselves. This leads me to my first ‘thing’…
- Cryptocurrency is becoming trendy
The idea of cryptocurrency is finally becoming cool. For too long, cryptocurrency has been associated with ‘geeks’ and ‘nerds’. After shaking off its nerdy stigma, cryptocurrency then seemed to fall into the hands of deviants and vagrants, making cryptocurrency look like a criminal tool, tarnished by the dark web. Now too, this stigma is being shaken and finally, cryptocurrencies are starting to pick up a trendy edge.
As cryptocurrencies become accepted in more places like, artisan food shops, coffee shops, hipster clothing shops and the likes, and, as more mobile technologies come to the fore (cryptocurrency apps, exchanges, wallets etc) it becomes far easier for us to add a ‘use value’ to cryptocurrencies. Coins like Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin are really leading the way here.
In essence, as cryptocurrencies become ‘cooler’ they will become more popular in 2019.
- Institutional Investment
Yep, we are back with this old chestnut. The thing is, when cryptocurrencies generate more value, they become categorically more popular, check this out for example;
This graph shows interest from Google Trends, relating to the amount of times ‘Bitcoin’ was used as a search term between the 25th of June 2017 and this week.Now, compare the trend on this graph, to the trend in the value of Bitcoin between the 25th of June 2017 and this week.
Bitcoin price data from Coinmarketcap.com
As you can see from the graph, the spike in Bitcoin search popularity correlates almost directly with the spike in the value of Bitcoin. From this, we can deduce that, when big institutional investment starts to ramp up price, the popularity of search terms like ‘Bitcoin’ online will start to increase, leading to a new wave in cryptocurrency population once again.
Big institutional investment is expected to take the markets by storm at the end of the year. Investment from the top 1% will see prices driven upwards, not only is high market value a consequence of this, an increase in mainstream popularity is too.
- Central bank interest
More and more central banks are exploring the use of cryptocurrencies, wishing to use them to understand how cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies can influence their countries. I believe that within these investigations, many central banks will develop a more positive approach to cryptocurrencies which in turn will encourage smaller local banks to start to investigate crypto.
As this happens, more clear rules and guidelines will be established and thus, the culture surrounding cryptocurrencies will be cleaned up. Ideas of money laundering will be lost and in turn will be replaced with the idea that a cryptocurrency is a real asset. Once the banks get involved, their customers will too, this is something that is promising big things indeed for 2019.
Whilst we are not saying 2019 will be THE year of the cryptocurrency, it might very well turn out to be an important one. As the above principles become more rounded and more prominent within cryptocurrency culture, we can expect crypto-popularity to rise which in turn, will give this industry and much needed boost.