Coinbase CEO Acknowledges Slow Bitcoin Adoption Rate
Despite the constant fluctuations in the prices of Bitcoin, supporters of the world's first virtual currency are adamant that its use will become mainstream in the long run. This is according to the CEO of Coinbase, Brian Armstrong, who is confident that Bitcoin will overcome its worse and increase its mass adoption that is presently appalling.
Brian made the remarks on a TV interview conducted during the Bloomberg Players Technology Summit held in San Francisco, California. He noted that although the use of Bitcoin is growing, the pace at which it is increasing is not sufficient to mitigate the volatility of the digital currency. Precisely, Brian said that the process of mainstreaming the use of Bitcoin is going to be considerably lengthy. Armstrong added that most Bitcoin users use the coin in making online payments, and that its usage has to transcend beyond this and include physical shops for the adoption rates to increase.
Additionally, Brian compared Bitcoin's struggles to internet startups during the early days of the world wide web. In this regard, he attributed the volatility of digital assets to the high expectations placed on Bitcoin by its enthusiasts, as well as a variety of external factors. For this reason, its adoption continues to soar despite the recent plummeting in market value.
Earlier this month, the news revealing the impending collaboration between the coffee chain and leading tech companies such as Microsoft via Intercontinental Exchange excited crypto hobbyists. They believed that this signified the start of the mainstream acceptance of virtual currencies as a means of payment by real world physical stores. However, Starbucks, the store that Brian referred to in his example, quickly refuted the claims that it would start taking cryptocurrency payments. Instead, the company clarified that it serves as testing platform for digital currency payment solutions, rather than entirely accepting cryptocurrencies like Microsoft and Overstock.
In an interview with Motherboard, a representative of Starbucks reiterated that their company does not accept Bitcoin payments. Rather, they exchange the Bitcoin into Fiat currency (preferably the US dollar), which can then be used to buy goods at Starbucks. Another spokesperson seconded this stance, saying that customers cannot buy coffee using Bitcoin after the enterprise formed a collaboration with a nascent cryptocurrency project called Bakkt.
While the Starbucks reference is somewhat wrong, Brian is confident that physical stores will soon start accepting virtual currency payments. Armstrong also expressed optimism that countries that are experiencing economic crises will adopt cryptocurrencies as an alternative to their faltering fiat currencies. Specifically, he issued a three to five-year timeframe for the adoption of digital currencies in turmoiled economies such as Turkey's and Venezuela's.
Nonetheless, Brian acknowledged that the adoption rates need to increase for the values of digital assets to rise. He also concurred that favorable regulation has a vital role in the mainstreaming of virtual currencies.