Cryptocurrencies in 2020: Bitcoin, Libra and Cryptokitties
Three cryptocurrency trends - Bitcoin halvening, Libra and Cryptokitties - could change the industry in 2020. Here's a closer look
In the latest edition of FinTech magazine we considered cryptocurrencies. Specifically, we discussed both the ups and downs of the sector to this point, as well as taking a broader outlook for the rest of the year and beyond.
This year, we found, could be the year that the crypto industry finds its footing and realises some of the potential that's been discussed for some time.
2019 and beyond
Digital ledger technology, known as blockchain, first appeared as a verification list or record used to track cryptocurrency transactions in 2008. At its inception, blockchain technology was originally tied to Bitcoin, but it's since become closely linked to other blockchain-powered forms of digital currency as well.
Indeed, cryptocurrencies are the flagship application for blockchain, with the success of many of the currencies responsible for a large part of the confidence and investment that continues in the technology.
2019 was a mixed year for cryptocurrencies and the blockchain technology that underpins them. As the industry emerged from the ‘crypto winter’ in the wake of 2017’s Bitcoin high point of almost $20,000, and the 2018 market meltdown, some authorities argued that, this year, cryptocurrencies failed to deliver on expectations.
Vinny Lingham, co-founder and CEO of Civic Inc said last month that “when the crypto community looks back at 2019, it will be remembered as the lost year. This is not unexpected because 2017 was such a milestone year. I like to say that the bigger the party, the bigger the hangover. We're still dealing with the hangover."
Three cryptocurrency trends: 2020
Hangover aside, there are several indicators that 2020 may be a year of movement for cryptos. Here are three trends we see as key to that development:
- Halvening the Bitcoin: The rate at which the Bitcoin blockchain awards crypto miners with pieces of currency is about to be cut in half. This happens every time 210,000 blocks have been mined from the blockchain - which equates to roughly every four years - until all the Bitcoins have been mined. This process plays an important role in stabilising the currency.
- Libra and company: The launch of Facebook's own digital currency will likely direct a fair amount of attention towards cryptocurrencies. Libra's mission is "to enable a simple global currency and financial infrastructure that empowers billions of people". The currency has backing not only from Facebook, but from more than a dozen companies across the financial, e-commerce, tech and telecommunications industries.
- Cryptokitties: Launched in December 2017, the game CryptoKitties is, according to TechCrunch, “essentially like a digital version of Pokemon cards but based on the Ethereum blockchain.” The game allows users to use Ethereum, one of the leading cryptocurrencies, to purchase a digital cat with certain genetic traits (yes, really). By breeding that cat with other digital cats, users create new cats that they can then sell them to other players in exchange for more Ethereum.
Read the full article in the latest edition of FinTech magazine here.
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For more information on all topics for FinTech, please take a look at the latest edition of FinTech magazine.