The start of 2018 hasn’t been good for cryptocurrency so far, yes! The market has faced several losses over the course of just a few months. With many currencies struggling to recover from multiple crashes, many believe that cryptocurrency’s time is now over. However, there are also many others who believe that this is just a minor setback and the game has just started for the year.
Julian Hosp, a cryptocurrency entrepreneur has been a very vocal supporter of cryptocurrency. Hosp’s views are different to other crypto optimists because he did believe that the crypto bubble would eventually burst which at the moment, is exactly what has happened. Hosp once predicted Bitcoin’s value to go as low as $5000 but also said that it would eventually climb back up to reach new heights. The former case has already occurred, and many experts agree with hosp that the latter portion will also happen in 2018. Here’s why:
Fixing existing problems
Bitcoin, despite being the oldest and perhaps the most outdated cryptocurrency is still the biggest one in the market. Bitcoin has a large user base and will continue to do so because of its immense popularity. However, the reason for the rise of altcoins was not only Bitcoin’s high price but also what those altcoins had to offer. Altcoins such as Ripple had features that Bitcoin lacked and thus made them a better investment option than that of Bitcoin.
According to Hosp, Bitcoin can reach $60,000 in 2018 after a severe decline. However, in order to do so, it must fix its scalability issues. Currently, Bitcoin can’t handle more than a dozen transactions per second. This number doesn’t even compare to the thousands of transactions per second credit cards can handle. Moreover, there are other cryptocurrencies which can scale easily thus making Bitcoin seem like an inferior currency. Therefore, if Bitcoin is going to appreciate further to greater heights, it will need some upgrades.
Fortunately for Bitcoin enthusiasts, Bitcoin will soon be upgrading to the “Lightning Network“. Created by Blockstream, the Lightning Network makes transactions super fast with costs close to zero, therefore, drastically increasing speed and scalability which Bitcoin severely lacks. Currently, not only are Bitcoin transactions slow, but there’s a hefty transaction fee as well. The lightning network will significantly improve transaction speed and lower transaction costs at the same time.
There are also other projects that Bitcoin is working on such as Rootstock which will allow the digital currency to make computations similar to those of Ethereum. If Bitcoin continues to upgrade its technology and keeps working on projects like these, then it’s pretty safe to assume that Bitcoin will appreciate massively in 2018.
This will divide many people. So far, increased regulation has hurt the cryptocurrency market. More and more countries are looking to regulate the crypto market due to its inflated prices and high volatility. However, this is needed.
If the crypto market is left unregulated, then it will definitely inflate higher and cause more problems. Also, many people can get away with crypto fraud and scams due to little or no regulation. The inflated prices have also led to countries like South Korea wanting to ban crypto trading altogether. Yes, regulation will initially hurt the cryptocurrency market but it the positive side to it outweighs the negatives here.
Those people looking to invest in cryptocurrency just for the sake of making money will eventually be driven out and then people who are serious about investing in cryptocurrency due to the innovative solutions it provides for real-world problems will be left. It will thus provide a better environment for the market to grow further which is why better regulation is a step in the right direction.
Initial Coin Offerings
More and more new companies are now opting towards ICOs as a way to get funding. That is why cryptocurrency is so helpful. With new platforms coming out that seek to innovate existing ideas, blockchain and cryptocurrency are always at their core. For example, the new Kodak platform that will be launching soon or the VR platform VibeHub.
Most ICOs are done using the Ethereum blockchain. People purchase the company’s crypto token using Ethereum. Therefore, with more and more ICOs, especially large-scale ICOs, Ethereum’s demand will gradually rise leading to a price increase. It’s very likely for Ethereum to achieve a $200 billion market cap in 2018. Therefore, more large-scale ICOs will be pivotal in helping cryptocurrency becoming a success in 2018.
Improved Accessibility and Usability
Currently, it’s not so easy to purchase and use cryptocurrency for transactions. You would need to have an account on an online crypto exchange where you’d need to purchase cryptocurrencies just to purchase other cryptocurrencies. It’s certainly not as easy as having a debit card and instantly withdrawing money from an ATM.
However, LitePay is going to do just that. A service started by Litecoin which will allow Litecoin holders to keep a visa-like debit card that will work at all Visa supported ATMs. Just like any other debit card, you will be able to make online transactions via Litecoin and will be able to withdraw money from ATMs. Cryptocurrency conversions will be handled automatically as well making it easy to convert cryptocurrency to fiat money.
This will help merchants and businesses alike use cryptocurrencies more easily. It’s likely that other cryptocurrencies will try to follow in Litecoin’s footsteps as well. Thus, making cryptocurrency, in general, more usable in daily life. The introduction of LitePay will pave the way for other cryptocurrencies to do the same and thus, eventually leading to more demand for cryptocurrency in general.
Different type of Investors
2018 will see institutions also investing in cryptocurrency. A lot of money has been invested into cryptocurrency so far, however, institutional funds are different. With institutional investors entering the cryptocurrency market, the market cap could potentially double, causing many cryptocurrencies to rise significantly in value.
Of course, there are other factors as well regarding cryptocurrency, one being a large amount of uncertainty that comes with crypto. However, when considering all the different reasons mentioned above, there’s no reason to believe cryptocurrency won’t do well in 2018.