According to a new study by the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance, there are now 35 million ID verified cryptocurrency users in the world. The study also found that there are over 139 million cryptocurrency accounts, many of which are owned by anonymous users, so the actual number of global crypto users is likely far higher than 35 million.
Coinbase alone claims to have 20 million users, and it is estimated that there are somewhere between 50 million to 100 million unique crypto users globally. The study reported that user numbers grew by 4x in 2017, and then doubled again this year.
Retail Crypto Wallets Dwarf Institutional Wallets
The study also found that institutional investors actually make up a very small percentage of the crypto ecosystem, with ordinary users taking up the majority of crypto wallets. Another interesting finding is that roughly 40% of crypto users open their wallets on a weekly basis.
This data seems to suggest that the technology is being used for a currency and store of value just as much as it is an object of speculation.
Many experts who have been in the industry since the early days believe that the mass adoption of the technology will be driven by the "unbanked" people of developing countries and areas where the economy is struggling, an idea that is also supported by this data. This is perhaps why so many crypto enthusiasts have remained 'believers' despite the lengthy bear market that has gripped 2018.