This year has undoubtedly been the worse one for cryptocurrencies in terms of prices but it is not all doom and gloom as adoption is growing as actual usage of cryptos is on the up.
Double The Users in 2018
With a dump of around 87% since January, crypto markets are on the floor showing no signs of recovery. Many industry observers have predicted further losses and the mainstream media is gleefully publishing a torrent of FUD.
According to a study from the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance the number of verified users of cryptocurrencies almost doubled in the first three quarters of the year as reported by Bloomberg. The research indicates that the actual figure has climbed from 18 million last year to 35 million users in 2018. In 2016 there were an estimated 5 million cryptocurrency users.
The study goes on to look at cryptocurrency accounts claiming that this figure has also jumped from 85 million in 2017 to 139 million this year. The signs are positive for an eventual market recovery as increased users will lead to greater adoption which in turn will boost digital token prices.
It was suggested that most users are speculators or long term investors, hodling whatever they have accumulated as selling in current conditions will lead to heavy losses for the majority.
“Conforming with popular narratives, survey data indicates that the majority of users – both established as well as new entrants – are individuals and not business clients. Individuals can be hobbyists, retail investors, consumers, or users seeking a better investment or payment alternative,” the study said before adding “Growth rates were at their highest in 2017, and the number of new user accounts as well as ID-verified users continued to rapidly grow in 2018 as well,”
Increasing user numbers has resulted in a massive boom for crypto exchanges which are still aggressively expanding despite the market meltdown. Binance still tops the charts for adjusted daily trade volume according to Coinmarketcap, however that too has plummeted from over $2 billion per day to around $400 million where it currently is.
Crypto markets are currently a few billion away from their all-time low of the year and capitalization is back at August 2017 levels. Over $700 billion has been wiped out of digital currencies this year but that money was once there, and is still waiting to re-enter the space when markets start to recover. That may not be for a few months yet though as current predictions are looking at late 2019 for any kind of real recovery to occur.