From bitcoin ATMs, hash rate, futures volume to cumulative transaction fees, SegWit adoption, and unmoved BTC, the growth has been explosive.
We are nearly a week into 2020 and BTC price has started gaining momentum. Today, we went past $7,500 on Bitfinex and are currently trading at $7,460 with 24 hours gains of 1.80%, as per Coincodex while trading volume is still low at just $206 million.
BitcoinSV meanwhile is the top gainer among the top 10 cryptocurrencies which is up 5% but registering the volume of only about $2.5 million.
To date in 2020, we are up 1.59% after recording gains of about 85% last year which has been the worst positive year for the world’s leading cryptocurrency. The last decade meanwhile saw an eye-popping 9,000,000% increment in value.
Though in terms of price and gains, 2019 wasn’t that much of a big year, the Bitcoin network made several records.
To start with the hopium, about 70% of all Bitcoin hasn’t been moved for more than 6 months. As Alistair Milne notes, the last time this happened was when we were approaching 2016 halving.
Bitcoin UTXO Age Distribution
2019 Success has Lightning Network up for more Thrills
The second layer on the Bitcoin network, Lightning Network that allows for instant and cheap BTC payments is looking to pack a punch in 2020 with the Schnorr and Taproot roll out and even a Lightning ATM.
But looking back in 2019, Lightning Network achieved huge milestones in terms of first major exchange integration, the first neutrino mobile wallet launched and a Lightning conference as well.
Also, the number of advertised Lightning Network channels increased by 74% while the amount of BTC in those channels surged by 63%. In June, the amount of BTC actually went above 1,000 BTC but has since then gone down to 869 BTC.
Lightning Network stats, Source
Futures Volume Set a Record
The US regulated bitcoin futures platforms saw an increase in trading activity in 2019 in comparison to the year before that. Both the CME and Cboe launched bitcoin futures products in Dec. 2017. In the first few months of 2018, the volume increased only to decline as BTC price consistency fell.
Then in the second half of 2018 and the first half of 2019 saw bitcoin futures trading activity migrated to the CME as Cboe announced that it would no longer offer BTC futures products in the Spring of 2019 due to decline in demand.
In April 2019, however, a sharp increase in price spurred a “considerable” rise in trading activity, with CME regaining its highest volume months ever over the summer.
In the fall, ICE launched Bakkt. Despite the launch of new futures platforms, aggregate bitcoin futures trading activity declined in the second quarter of 2019 though it was “significantly” higher than that in 2018.
Bitcoin’s Cumulative Transaction Fees Jumped $1B Milestone
In October, the Bitcoin transaction fees surpassed $1 billion milestone, which is an indicator of Bitcoin’s continued use over time.
The fastest period of growth to this milestone was during the last bull run. In Dec. 2017, average bitcoin transaction fees jumped to $55, up from about $1 a month back.
This big upswing in fees indicates a spike in network use as well and competition to mine transactions.
2019 transaction volume:
The entire Internet $4.1T
Bitcoin to exceed the Internet in 2020.
BTW Bitcoin pertains to investment velocity while the Internet is payment velocity. Quite different, Bitcoin is currently a store of value, so investment is more important https://t.co/v6oSZM01NJ
— Willy Woo (@woonomic) January 2, 2020
As we move closer to the hard limit of 21 million BTC, mining rewards will keep on decreasing, this having will cut it in half to 12.5 BTC, which puts more emphasis on transaction fees.
Bitcoin ATMs Increased 55% to 6,387
Bitcoin ATMs exploded in 2019, going from 4,100 on Jan 1st, 2019 to just shy of 6,400 on January 1st, 2020. This has been an increase of about 55% in 2019.
Last year also marked Bitcoin to be bought at Kiosks. A partnership between Coinme and Coinstar made it possible for people to buy cryptos in more than 2,200 grocery stores.
Bitcoin Hash Rate’s Roaring Growth
Bitcoin hash rate was another fundamental that saw explosive growth in 2019. After hitting bottom in Dec. 2018, we continued to make new all-time highs. 2019 high was 111.8 Th/s that spilled onto 2020 as well as we surged higher to 114.5Th/s.
The same as hash rate, difficulty jumped to its ATH at 13.69 trillion in November and further higher on January 2nd, 2020 at 13.79 trillion. This means the Bitcoin network continues to be stronger than ever.
Aggregate yearly bitcoin transaction volume in USD also reached an all-time high in 2019.
SegWit Adoption Soars above 61%
SegWit adoption climbed from 34.4% at the beginning of the year to 61.70% at the end of the year.
As Jameson Lopp noted, “Bitcoin transactions spending SegWit outputs increased another 20% this year and now the majority of transactions spend SegWit outputs.”
SegWit Adoption, Source
In Dec., BitMEX added support for native SegWit while Tron founder Justin Sun promised full SegWit support on Poloniex in 2020. Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao has also hinted towards the integration.
2019 has been packed with a lot of records but as Square Crypto puts it, “This decade was bitcoin just warming up,” and 2020 is going to be much crazier with halving just four months away.