A senior executive for financial services giant JPMorgan says that the current state of the crypto markets is comparable to the “Napster” phase of music streaming in the 1990s. 

Speaking to The Financial News, JPMorgan’s head of digital assets Umar Farooq called crypto “clunky” and compared it to the state of the music streaming industry in the ‘90s. Farooq noted that the future looks bright for crypto, similar to the evolution of the music industry into Apple Music and Spotify. 

As reported by The Daily Hodl, Farooq said:

In the 90s, there was this thing called Napster… It was clunky. Not everyone could do it. And then 20 years later, you have Apple Music and Spotify. I don’t think we would have gotten here without Napster. We are sitting in the Napster age. We just don’t know what Spotify looks like. So I think [crypto] is here to stay. I just don’t know in what shape or form.”

He called the speed of innovation for digital assets “dizzying,” and revealed that the bank was seeing massive interest from clients. 

Farooq also claimed that crypto had gone well past its “wild West,” days to become an established industry:

Bitcoin has been around for a little more than a decade now. The first few years was literally just, you know, kind of rolling along slowly, then things started to catch up. People realize, ‘OK, I can build some more. Maybe we can program this thing, maybe we can create ecosystems…

Decentralized organization has been defined. It is a Cambrian explosion.”

Farooq’s comments follow a similar report by JPMorgan analyst Kenneth Worthington earlier in the month, who said that crypto would become increasingly relevant to the financial services industry this year. He predicted US-based exchange Coinbase would become one of the largest beneficiaries of crypto adoption. 


The views and opinions expressed by the author, or any people mentioned in this article, are for informational purposes only, and they do not constitute financial, investment, or other advice. Investing in or trading cryptoassets comes with a risk of financial loss.