What is the Future of Blockchain?

Watch the full video revealing the findings from the 2018 Future of Blockchain Survey

Blockchain is in its Infancy

Respondents believe the current state of the Blockchain Era is comparable to June 1997 during the Dot Com Era.

Given the historical similarities, the blockchain is still missing most of the key infrastructure and tooling to build applications, let alone good user experiences.

Difficult To Use

With Bitcoin and other cryptoassets providing the first application-level use cases on the blockchain, they’ve had the most focus to make them useable.

Even so, nearly three quarters of people say cryptoasset wallets and crypto exchanges are difficult to use.

While companies like Coinbase and Circle have made buying and selling top cryptoassets relatively easy, 2 out of 3 people find buying and selling cryptocurriences other than BTC, BCH, ETH, LTC, XRP as very difficult.

9% of people have found the difficulty an inhibitor to using wallets. While custodial exchanges make holding cryptoassets easy, given the quantity of hacks, 62% of people are uncomfortable with exchanges holding their cryptoassets.

Addressing Scalability

The #1 problem people see as hindering blockchain adoption is scalability.

78% of people believe it will take at least 3 – 5 years for scalability to be solved.

When asked how scalability will be solved on the protocol level, the responses were indecisive, showing there are still more questions than answers. (EG lack of conviction between layer 1, layer 2)

Regulation Needs to be Addressed

79% of people feel that current regulations in the US regarding cryptocurrencies are unclear.
But 85% of respondents acknowledge that regulating decentralized cryptoassets is difficult.

Blockchain will Disrupt Countless Industries

Respondents identified 35 unique industries that they believe will be meaningfully disrupted in the next 5 years.

The top industries include:

  1. Financial Transaction Processing
  2. Micropayments
  3. Banking
  4. Supply Chain
  5. Crowdfunding
  6. Securities Trading
  7. Voting
  8. Healthcare
  9. Cloud Storage
  10. Virtual Property

Hundreds of Companies are Addressing the Opportunities

Respondents recognize incumbents like IBM doing interesting things in the space and see some of the top up-and-coming companies as

  • Ethereum
  • Ripple
  • Circle
  • Coinbase
  • Consensys
  • Sia

The Promise of Blockchain is Enticing

People believe that the promise of blockchain’s to provide decentralized control, trust, transparency, enable new business models, and ensure data resiliency will accelerate it’s adoption.

Enterprise Blockchain Adoption

Enterprises are excited about the promise of blockchain, and many like IBM are actively taking leadership in the space.

That said, 69% of respondents believe that the enterprise has very low ability to implement blockchain technology in their organization.

75% of people believe that private blockchains will accelerate adoption.

dApps, ICOs and Tokens

Respondents were split 50/50 when asked if every dApp will need its own individual token.

While 60% of people believe the number of companies attempting a token offering in 2018 will be greater than 2017, only 17% of people believe ICOs will replace VC.

1 in 3 survey respondents had purchased tokens as part of an ICO.  Of them, 56% are still holding their tokens and only 6% have traded back into a fiat currency.

61% of respondents believe there will be more than 10,000 cryptocurrencies within 10 years.

Mining is too Centralized

2 in 3 people believe mining today is too centralized.

74% of people believe mining is becoming even more centralized and 78% of people feel that the average person cannot participate as a miner.

For the next year, however, 77% of respondents believe Proof-of-Work will remain the most widely used consensus mechanism, despite it’s challenges. 86% of people highlight the energy expenditure of mining cryptocurrencies as a significant problem, environmentally and economically.

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