New year - but also a new decade - to see what exciting developments we expect to see in 2020. 2019 was a rich event-year. We have seen the birth of new alliances, new crypto products and a plethora of blockchain protocols that have evolved and expanded. Developments are going fast, in the crypto area ... but these are the 6 events that we expect to happen in the new year and we will be watching with interest.
Bitcoin's Halving, the third in its history, is expected in mid-May, when the block count reaches 630,000. It happens about every 4 years, when 210,000 new blocks are completed and the maximum supply of 21 million bitcoin will be created by the network. Miners' pay will be halved, from 12.5 BTC in force in July 2016 to 6.25 BTC. This means that the supply of new Bitcoin will drop, thereby raising the price of the currency. But the rise in price depends on how demand is shaped. To what extent is the price of BTC driven by the economy of supply? Will there be a big rise in price in the two previous halving? We'll find out soon.
Facebook’s Calibra Wallet
Calibra, the newly-formed Facebook subsidiary - which aims to provide financial services - has announced that by June 2020, the digital wallet for Libra will be launched. This wallet will be available on Facebook Messenger, What’s App, and as a standalοne Aρp. It promises to allow us to send Libra to anyone, just with a smartphone, as easily and quickly as we can send a text message.
Lure in the very low cost, as well as the security guaranteed by Calibra (live support if you lose your password or your phone .. even a refund in case of a hijack). In the new year, we will see whether Calibra fulfills its promises, its market response, and whether governments' concerns about the issuance of a private currency are substantive.
Since its launch in 2015, Ethereum has been operating with a similar security system to the world's first cryptocurrency, Bitcoin. Relying on the same consensus model, Proof of Work, it decided to change it to its new version of Ethereum 2.0 and adopt the Proof of Stake model. Although Proof of Stake is a consensus model that we have already seen used by other digital currencies, it will be particularly interesting to watch, since Ethereum will be the largest - in the capitalization market - cryptocurrency to experiment with this. plan. The questions a lot .. will it be safe? will the cost increase? will there be a bridge of the new network with the existing network of proof of work?
In 2019 we had a big increase in the growth and in the use of stablecoins. Over 200 stablecoins have been announced since 2017, 66 of which are already active (50% of which are deployed on the Ethereum network). The key asset of stablecoins - whether their value is tied to the dollar, gold, or other valuable asset - is stability, a feature that many investors are interested in and are gaining ground in trading, with Tether (USDT) first.
Stablecoins seem to combine the positives of both worlds: a global, decentralized and anonymous mechanism like cryptocurrencies, but also stable valuations like a fixed fiat currency. Will 2020 be their year? Their increasing popularity and potential expansion - beyond their utility in other applications - will also serve as an important catalyst for the spread of the use of cryptocurrencies as a central means of day-to-day transactions?
2019 was undoubtedly the year of decentralized funding, the Decentralized Finance (DeFi). What will happen in 2020? The transition from today's closed financial system to a decentralized, digital economy based on open protocols will certainly lead to a new era of financial mechanisms. Decentralized funding leverages open source software and decentralized networks to transform traditional financial products into secure, confidential and transparent protocols that operate without unnecessary intermediaries. "DeFi's goal is to rebuild the banking system around the world," said Alex Pack, chief executive of Dragonfly Capital.
Chinese state digital currency
Since 2014, the Central Bank of China has been working on the DC / EP project: Digital Currency / Electronic Payments. According to Yi Gang, governor of the People's Bank of China, the goal was not to create a new currency such as Bitcoin, but to partially digitize China's existing monetary base. DCEP will be linked to the national currency RMB (yuan) in a 1: 1 ratio and is expected to reduce the cost and delays of bank transfers. DCEP will initially be distributed to all commercial banks affiliated with the Chinese Central Bank, such as ICBC and Agricultural Bank of China. The development of DCEP will be similar to that of natural yuan. With this new digital RMB, China will be able to offer cross-border payments at a lower cost and faster speed. We will see it piloted in the cities of Shenzhen and Suzhou, but three telecommunications, China Telecom, China Mobile and China Unicom are likely to be involved.
The government has announced that all merchants that accept digital payments (Apple Pay, AliPay and WeChat) should also accept DCEP. This will certainly give DCEP great acceptance, not only in China but around the world. DCEP may not be a genuine cryptocurrency, but it is certain that it will force hundreds of millions of Chinese to start using and acquiring wallets and exchanges. Will DCEP become the most accepted digital currency in the world? How will this affect the world economy?
The cryptocurrency field is really huge that these developments are only a small part of what could happen in 2020. But there are certainly events that could have a significant impact on the widespread acceptance of cryptocurrencies within the year that just started.