Three Reasons to be Optimistic About Crypto in 2018

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January has been a turbulent month in the cryptocurrency scene. Due to the huge influx of new buyers in December, many people’s first experiences with crypto have been stressful, with great price volatility and a somewhat stagnant month in terms of price movement.

We’re growing tired of the FUD (fear, uncertainty, doubt) that’s been prevalent across social media in the last few weeks. Therefore, we wanted to share some positive news form the cryptocurrency space…

1. Samsung begins ‘mass production’ of ASIC miners

The South Korean electronics giant has announced that it is beginning a huge operation of producing ASIC hardware that is geared toward use for cryptocurrency mining . Thus far, Bitmain has had a virtual monopoly over mining hardware, which has fostered centralisation due to diminishing cryptocurrency returns on hardware investments.

Why should you be excited about this development? Well, we think that the fact an established tech giant like Samsung is moving into the mining hardware market signals some level of confidence on their behalf that cryptocurrency is here to stay.

2. The Lightning Network is speeding up Bitcoin transactions

The Lightning Network is proving its claims: lightning is speeding up on-chain Bitcoin transactions, making lower-volume transactions viable, all while maintaining decentralisation. We’re expecting Lightning Network nodes to be rolled out throughout 2018, bringing lightning-fast, cheap transactions to the Bitcoin blockchain to counter those that say Bitcoin’s slow transactions and large fees mark its obsolescence.

Why should you be excited about this development? Critics of Bitcoin have pointed toward its transaction backlogs and the necessity to attach high fees to transactions to get them to confirm in a reasonable amount of time. The Lightning Network looks set to drastically improve the speed and cost of transactions, thus addressing these criticisms.

3. South Korea is not banning crypto exchanges

Much of the FUD in January has come from the ambiguity surrounding the status of South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges. South Koreans have been big buyers in the cryptocurrency space, so the prospect of their government banning their access to exchanges understandably generated a lot of concern. However, South Korean officials have unequivocally stated that there are no plans to ban cryptocurrency exchanges that comply with their regulations.

Why should you be excited about this development? This means we should see South Korean traders and cryptocurrency buyers re-enter the market today, thus bringing an important segment of the market back into action.

We hope some of this news will brighten your outlook on the cryptocurrency space after what’s been a turbulent start to the year (which is common, it should be noted). As always, don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

All the best,

– The CBC UK team