Bitcoin Adoption Remains a Challenge, Industry Professionals Explain

Panos Mourdoukoutas, an economics professor at the University of Pennsylvania, recently noted that bitcoin (BTC), the flagship cryptocurrency, has not been able to achieve mainstream adoption because it “remains an exotic currency for technology enthusiasts.”

In an article published on Forbes (on January 29th), Mourdoukoutas mentioned that “most people don’t understand” how bitcoin works. This, according to Clement Thibault, a senior analyst at Investing.com.

Thibault explained that potential investors “only see bitcoin’s erratic price movement” and a “lack of understanding coupled with wild price swings creates a negative environment for adoption.” Many people also associate bitcoin with the large number of scams carried out under the guise of initial coin offerings (ICOs), Mourdoukoutas wrote.

Taking Complete "Responsibility" Of Your Crypto Account

Meanwhile, Steve Russo, the executive vice president at Krypti, a digital asset wallet service, pointed out: 

Bitcoin is not able to escape the hacking and theft that continue to be on the rise, which seem to occur daily.

Cryptocurrencies are also not being used by the masses because holding them is “much harder and more complicated than holding cash”, Thibault said. In order to manage a crypto account, users must know how to secure their private keys, while also learning how to become “entirely responsible for anything that goes wrong”, Thibault noted. He argued that: 

Most people aren’t ready for this kind of commitment and the comfort of fiat money suits them well, as imperfect as it may be.

17,000% Increase In Complaints From Crypto Users

At present, bitcoin users are also required to convert bitcoin to fiat money (which may be inconvenient) in order to pay for most services and products. Notably, a recent LendEDU report that analyzed cryptocurrency-related complaints found a 17,000% increase in the number of issues users had when conducting digital asset transactions. Most of the complaints were related to users not receiving their funds on time.

Jean Amiouny, the co-founder and CEO of Shakepay, a user-friendly service for buying and selling bitcoins in Canada, believes: 

People need to understand the value of Bitcoin as a truly permissionless and sound money, more than simply as a speculative asset to ‘get rich quick’.

"Struggling With Narrative"

In mid-August 2018, Meltem Demirors, the chief strategy officer of crypto treasury management firm CoinShares, told CNBC (during an interview) that the “narrative around bitcoin is still really hard to grasp.” She added that the crypto community was “really struggling with narrative right now.” According to Demirors, the “only metric we have currently for most cryptocurrencies is the price” and it’s an “imperfect” metric.

Demirors also believes digital assets must have legitimate and practical use cases before they have a chance at truly becoming mainstream.