Juniper: Bitcoin Users to More than Triple by 2019

BitcoinRiseHAMPSHIRE, England – The number of active bitcoin users worldwide will reach 4.7 million by the end of 2019, up from just over 1.3 million at the end of 2014.

Juniper Research released the prediction earlier this week, adding the caveat that usage will continue to be dominated by exchange trading, with retail adoption largely restricted to relatively niche demographics.

According Juniper’s report, a number of high-profile retailers are enabling bitcoin payment, but activity levels from both online and offline deployments are extremely low.

“While average daily transaction volumes have increased by around 50 percent since March 2014, the indications are that much of this growth results from higher transaction levels by established users rather from any substantial uplift in consumer adoption,” Dr. Windsor Holden, author of the report, observed.

The report cites a number of factors that could continue to inhibit growth, most notably the difficulty in communicating the concept of cryptocurrency payments to end users. Bitcoin’s historical association with — and continued use by — criminals for illegal purchases and money laundering likely will act as a further deterrent to mass adoption.

Meanwhile, the report observes that with many bitcoins being hoarded by early speculators, currency supply could be further restricted with bitcoin mining profitability threatened by a combination of the cryptocurrency’s volatility, lower Bitcoin yields and rising electricity costs.

Other findings from the report include:

  • The introduction of licensed, regulated exchanges could lead to a stabilization in currency values, and with it an increase in retail transaction adoption.
  • The protocols behind cryptocurrency could be deployed in areas such as real-time transactional settlement.
  • The altcoin market continues to be plagued by “pump-and-dump” currencies created solely as short-term investment vehicles.

 

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