The acceptance if cryptocurrency is slow. Bitcoin is over 10 years old and there are still, proportionately speaking, very few users globally.
Many use the idea of slow acceptance rate as a sign that it is a failure. This is not exactly the case.
In fact, one analyst at Deutsche Bank believes things are only getting started. Over the next decade, by 2030, his conclusion is that cryptocurrency will replace fiat.
Jim Reid took a look at the existing financial system and the challenges it will be facing. In his report he stated this:
Reid stipulated that people’s heightened demand for dematerialized means of payment and anonymity could drive more individuals to digital currencies.
Ten years is a very long time. Technology is advancing at a never-seen-before pace. At the same time, humans embracing of technology keeps rising. What took decades before to penetrate the mainstream can be accomplished in under a decade now.
Improved communications, including the Internet, enables greater collaboration between people. No longer do people need to be in close physical (geographic) proximity to each other. In fact, knowing the person on the other end other than virtually is no longer a requirement either. The ability to create and spread is happening in ways never imagined.
Money is the ultimate tool in collaboration. It brings people together for specific purposes while enabling a means of value transfer. Cryptocurrency makes this system a lot easier by eliminating friction while also giving people an early adopter placement.
Personally, the trend that is happening is what I see as part of a larger one. The entire world is going to change over the next 10-15 years as our relationship with the "Internet" evolves. We are going to see a major paradigm shift as technology develops a completely new web that is a larger part of our daily lives.
For this reason, the switch to digital assets only makes sense. Ultimately, the Internet is going to connect assets, people, and the physical space around us. Somehow, I do not see dollar bills fitting into that picture.
The key for cryptocurrency's success is getting people involved. This week, there were a couple articles detailing how gains are being made.
Robinhood, the start up crypto trading application, announced that it now has 10 million accounts. This is an application that is fairly popular with the younger generation. While the free trading model is questioned, there is no doubt that company was successful in attracting users.
Another milestone was reached, the same 10 million level, by the Brave browser. It is being reported that the browser now has 10 million monthly active users. While there is no way to tell how many are involved in cryptocurrency, the bottom line is that all those people have access to it. Essentially, it is a simple way to onboard people and get them familiar with cryptocurrency.
The Brave situation is an interesting lesson for Steem. Brave is working on changing the advertising model, seeking to reward users. It is all part of the "attention economy" where it is recognized that what people focus upon has value. Thus, they should be rewarded for it.
Steem is taking a similar approach with Smart Media Tokens. By going to where the people already are, their favorite websites, SMTs will enable them to be rewarded for their efforts. Instead of the platform benefiting financially while the individuals get little (or more likely nothing), Steem has a proven system of rewards to users based upon their contributions.
Brave is gaining a lot of success because it is doing little to change what people are doing. With that project, one only needs to switch (or add) web browsers. This is something most have done. After that, other than clicking on the rewards, one simply operates the same as with any other browser.
SMTs will follow a similar pattern. For success, the acceptance has to be by the site owners. Once implemented, users behave in the same manner they always did. They show up at their preferred site, engage in the manner like always, and receive some cryptocurrency.
It is a rather simple model that Brave is proving successful.
The key is to get more people involved. How they arrive at that point is really of little consequence. While everyone wants their blockchain/application to the be dominant one, the simple fact is the industry needs numbers. There are 7 billion people on the planet, 4.3 billion who are on the Internet. My guess is there are less than 100M people using cryptocurrency. That means there are a boatload who are not. This is our target.
Whatever gets them using (involved with) cryptocurrency is to the benefit of all. One who arrives via the Brave browser might be open to applications on Steem. This person, at least fundamentally, will have some understanding of cryptocurrency. Thus, the conversion to something Steem is offering might not be that difficult a transition.
Ultimately, it is nothing more than a numbers game. Bringing people into the world of cryptocurrency is the first step. Applications that reward people in crypto and put it in their hands are going to be what attracts the masses. I do not believe most of the world has the money to invest in, say, Bitcoin. Instead, the path is to get people doing things they normally do and rewarding them for it.
Over time, this will begin to attract the masses. As the infrastructure grows, we are going to see the ability to handle more people.
One day we will wake up and realize hundreds of millions of people are involved. We will be asking ourselves where they all came from.
Years of development results in an "overnight success".
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