Coinbase was signing up 50,000 users a day in 2017
San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase was signing up to 50,000 new customers a day in 2017 Brian Armstrong, chief executive of the company said on Tuesday night.
Speaking at the Bloomberg Players Technology Summit in San Francisco, Armstrong intimated that interest had dipped this year, however, after crypto prices fell dramatically from their January peaks, although he offered no comparative figure.
“This technology is going through a series of bubbles and corrections, and each time it does that, it’s at a new plateau,” Armstrong said at the event.
Indeed, bitcoin, the biggest of the cryptocurrencies by market capitalisation and trading volumes, traded close to $400 against the US dollar in early 2017, but by mid-December it peaked close to $20,000.
A subsequent and rapid price drop, however, saw many who had bought cryptocurrencies while prices were still rising lose much of their investments. By early February, bitcoin had dropped back below $6,000.
Armstrong addressed the current volatility in cryptocurrency prices: “People’s expectations are all over the map, but real-world adoption has been going up.”
He estimated about 10% of digital currencies were now being used for day-to-day transactions in services such as online gaming and other web purchases, but noted the analogue world would take a while to catch up.
“I think it will be quite some time before you cross the street to Starbucks in the US and pay with cryptocurrencies,” he said.
But, he said, with some enthusiasm: “Now it’s getting harder and harder to be a crypto sceptic.”