Last update: January 2020
After a decade of its launch, how many people use Bitcoin? Now more than ever, the world of cryptocurrencies is quickly expanding and gaining momentum towards mass adoption. Bitcoin (BTC), one of the most popular cryptocurrencies, serves a more significant use than just ‘making money’. The main goal of Bitcoin is to become a digital currency that can easily be used for various transactions and purchases. This goal relies heavily on the number of people that opt to use Bitcoin.
Even though 75% of U.S. adults have claimed to have heard about Bitcoin, a recent survey conducted by Harris Poll determined that not so many people have purchased Bitcoin in America. About 27 million people (8% of the population) use Bitcoin in the United States. The survey places this cryptocurrency as the most popular crypto in the blockchain industry.
Nevertheless, Bitcoin is still at its early stages of adoption. As with every new product, Bitcoin faces the challenge of ensuring a wide adoption among different users.
The daily growth of technology has helped boost adoption, but there is still much to accomplish. It is no surprise that many consumers do not really understand what this cryptocurrency is all about, and a good percentage cannot give a proper explanation of the changes Bitcoin seeks to achieve.
It is hard to pin down how many people use Bitcoin across the globe. However, it is estimated that over 42 million Bitcoin wallets have been set up since 2009. It is essential to point out that there is not a direct correlation between the number of wallets and the final users interacting with the network. This is because one person can own multiple wallets.
Let’s now try to outline a possible mainstream Bitcoin adoption. Below are the expected phases:
In 2009, Bitcoin saw its beginning. In this experimentation phase, curious users were still doing research. Those who dared to invest, did so with one foot on the fence.
Shortly after, Bitcoin merchant processors, exchanges, and wallet providers started to come up with different market strategies. These included how to pull and encourage investors, entrepreneurs, and other Bitcoin users. This level involved placing the product in the market and evaluating consumer use.
Big players come into play, and we begin to see the adoption stage. At this point, the world’s top Venture Capital Firms started investing in Bitcoin-related companies. These investments surpassed 90 million dollars. By 2014, the investment had risen to over 300 million dollars, which is about $50 million more compared to what Venture Capital Firms had invested in internet-linked corporations. Only after this phase could we really begin to see how many people use Bitcoin.
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In this phase, banks, institutions, and broker-dealers join the Bitcoin journey. The increasing volume, demand, rising price, and the development of derivatives became the stimulant for mass adoption.
By now we have a better idea of how many people use Bitcoin. Even though global adoption has not happened entirely, the progress is quite positive. 100% adoption will be witnessed if companies continue to innovate ways to make it easy for investors to buy, own, and spending Bitcoin. If more Bitcoin awareness programs are run across the globe, this will also hasten its adoption.
According to a December 2019 report, Deutsche Bank estimates that by 2030, there will be more than 200 million users with cryptocurrency wallets.
According to Bitcoin’s public blockchain, the coin crossed a significant adoption phase with its 400 millionth transaction. Right now, Bitcoin is averaging 350,000 transactions per day, which is about 15,000 transactions per hour.
Bitcoin is yet to cross its adoption milestone. This is because transacting has proven slightly less fast compared to other money transfer platforms. This is slowly changing with new technologies like Lightning Network and Liquid.
Moreover, it is still not clear how diverse the users of Bitcoin can get. Wide experimental research on new product adoption is being carried out all over the U.S., targeting young college users.
The future of Bitcoin does look bright. Some still argue that the rise of users does not really mean complete adoption, but we believe that the more the consumers, the more promising the adoption will be.