What to Expect from the Cryptosphere in 2018?
In a nutshell, the year 2017 was chaotic, and I look at it as the Blockchain’s Big Bang - the beginning of the crypto universe.
2017 was the year when the blockchain became mainstream. It was the year when it was not just about bitcoins for a broader audience. Even the naysayers of bitcoins started admitting the potential of the blockchain. Not only that, this year, we also saw companies raising hundreds of millions of dollars through ICOs and we’ve also seen millions of dollars getting stolen from the wallets. As if, this chaos was not enough for a year, we witnessed several hard forks in the bitcoin blockchain, giving birth to more cryptocurrencies.
In a nutshell, the year 2017 was chaotic, and I look at it as the Blockchain’s Big Bang - the beginning of the crypto universe. After this eventful year, what can we expect from the world in the coming year?
Above everything that we anticipate, sanity tops the chart. Within last 12 months, the entire crypto market grew from merely $16bn to a whopping $600bn. That’s more than half a trillion dollars! What fueled this growth? Some of this increase was backed by smart and visionary money that believed in the potential of the underlying blockchain technology. But most of it was fueled by the greed. A lot of people entered the market with just one reason - in hopes to exit at a higher.
And for this reason, I call the following graph, not a graph of disruption, but that of greed.
The greedy money will soon leave the market, and the sanity will prevail. I suspect 2018 will see some corrections in the prices and will also look at the deaths of some of the large projects. Tezos bit the dust this year; more will happen in 2018.
Awaited protocols will launch
The bright side is that a lot of companies that raised millions of dollars to build and start their decentralized protocols will eventually build and launch them. More often, these protocols will be open sourced projects that will gain some momentum in the coming year and will start to see adoption from the early adopters.
Developments and early adoption of these protocols will be great news for the entire ecosystem because it will bring in more people to work on decentralized protocols, therefore, creating a self-fueling loop.
With the adoption of these open source protocols, more developers will begin contributing to their source code, making them more diverse and decentralized.
Institutions will bite into blockchain
This year, the world witnessed a handful of banks and other organizations to adopt blockchain in specific areas of their businesses. But the massive growth in the entire crypto space, other large institutions on the likes of Goldman Sachs and J P Morgan will bring in blockchain and cryptocurrencies included in their businesses.
With derivatives like Bitcoin Futures available on regulated public exchanges, cryptocurrencies will go far and wide to get some of the most prominent skeptics involved in the market too.
Regulations will follow
I agree an outsider can not regulate the blockchain and cryptocurrencies - that’s the beauty of it. But the community is evolving the self-regulation that they will put on themselves. For instance, the ICOs will see a lot of protection to the investors provided by the company itself instead of relying on the central authority to do so. As another example, the crypto exchanges have already started doing a proper KYC/AML for each of their users.
The market is full of con artists and therefore, for legitimate businesses to thrive, they’ll have to start thinking about the investors first.
While we saw lots of ups and downs in the year 2017, we have only seen just the tip of the iceberg. The rest is yet to come. Among the things mentioned above, the world will also look at a lot of infrastructure developments including Lightning Network, interoperability between various blockchains and atomic swaps.
While this year, most of the world talked about bitcoin, I believe, the year 2018 will be the year when blockchain will see lots of love.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house
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