By Natalie Lord
As the year comes to a close, cryptocurrency investors and spectators are eagerly waiting to see what 2020 will bring. Will it be the year when cryptocurrencies become properly main stream or will continued volatility plague the industry and scepticism arena increase? We look at what lies ahead.
It’s a new year, a new decade and hopefully a new era for cryptocurrencies after a rollercoaster few years. As we enter 2020, we are going to see increasing integrations between the crypto world and the “real world” as we know it. To date the cryptocurrency and blockchain industries have stood alone, but that could all change in the coming year. Many believe 2020 is going to be a critical year for mass market integration of cryptocurrencies.
Chainlink is leading the field in this area. Its list of partners is impressive. Google, Oracle, Swift, Gartner, IC3, Alibaba and a host of other companies are all showing an interest in connecting data applications to the blockchain through Chainlink.
Facebook’s Libra project is set to launch Calibra – a wallet that will store and transfer the stablecoin by June 2020. Facebook’s entry into crypto assets brought digital currencies before Congress with Libra claiming it will fulfil a promise to bank the unbanked. If this happens it would be a significant step towards mass market integration.
Ultimately, we’re at the point now where the path for cryptocurrency success lies in adoption, which is a result of price, confidence and belief. 2019 was a slow year in this area but the pace should pick up in the coming year, and XRP might be the catalyst.
The demand for XRP has grown considerably this past year and the partnership between Ripple and Moneygram is a clear indicator of how fast volumes are growing. Moneygram is one of the largest money transfer services in the world.
Only a few other cryptocurrencies show comparative signs of similar increasing adoption.
The prognosis for Bitcoin, the first and arguably the strongest digital currency in the area, is good. At some point in May it will go through the programmed halving of the block rewards allocated to miners who maintain the network on which Bitcoin runs. The miners will receive half the number of Bitcoins for each block of data they have successfully recorded to Bitcoin’s blockchain. This will be the third time this has happened. Historically, Bitcoin’s price has immediately soared after each halving, before subduing a bit but still maintaining a significant price increase.
Bitcoin has long touted itself as being “digital gold” and made known its belief that economic stimulus through monetary policy is a bad idea. Fans of the currency and investors are therefore watching for signs of impending global recession with apprehensive delight. They believe that Bitcoin will be considered safe-haven territory in times of economic downturn which will further boost the currency.
But it’s not all upbeat. The future doesn’t look bright for the remaining 99% of cryptocurrencies and it’s anticipated that many will disappear sooner rather than later.
There is one certainty and that is that it’s going to be an interesting and eventful year for cryptocurrencies with expectations possibly being surpassed.