2019 has all in all been a pretty decent year for cryptocurrencies. There have been a few rough spots - some thefts and hacks, the occasional regulatory resistance, but on the plus side, for every setback or short bear run, there are several positive developments. Without a doubt, what time remains until the end of 2019 will be even bring even better news for the market, of that we can be sure.
Bakkt is almost set to launch its futures trading venture, the halving is set to arrive in the middle of the 2020, Ethereum is arriving with some major upgrades going all the way into 2020, nations are warming up to the idea of digital assets, the hash rate of the network now exceeds that of the hash rate during the late run of 2017/early 2018 - the string of positive developments trickling out from the media, enterprise entities, financial institutions and lawmakers is extremely encouraging for a market that was once considered to be a haven for criminals.
This week alone, there have been several reports that should point towards greater acceptance and implementation, and this should buoy investors. For example, India, which has been viewed as a particularly suitable region for the application of cryptocurrencies, has seemingly changed its stance on crypto, going from strict denial to what appears to be genuine praise in a new report.
This sudden change of mind, which is a symptom of how the entire word is slowly beginning to accept crypto, is now spreading to entities in all areas and levels.
Anyway, here’s the latest that has been happening recently in crypto - there’s a lot to look forward to in the coming months.
1. Ethereum co-founder Joseph Lubin Joins the Hyperledger Board
Joseph Lubin, the co founder of Ethereum and founder of ConsenSys, has joined the board of open source blockchain effort Hyperledger, which provides a suite of blockchain related products and services, mainly aimed at enterprise entities.
Hyperledger is no small effort and counts many prominent entities in the tech, business and fintech space, including IBM, Intel, SWIFT, Wells Fargo and JP Morgan. The reason such a varied collection of entities exist, and have decided to join the effort, is because they all see the benefits of cross-industry operations and know that the tech to make it happen exists. ConsenSys has also become a member of the Hyperledger consortium.
Lubin will bring his invaluable experience with Ethereum and the blockchain space and, as we know, Lubin has some very agreeable opinions on the market and industry.
2. Brave Browser Becomes #1 Browser in Japan
The Brave Browser and Basic Attention Token (BAT) project has been making quite a name for itself over the past year. First, it has grown phenomenally, exceeding Google Chrome adoption rates and surpassing both Firefox and Opera. It has millions of active monthly users who are emphatically praising the privacy features of the browser.
The BAT token has also seen much more features and enhancements being released around, like the Ad trial program and more tipping possibilities. Perhaps this is what has pushed Brave to the top of the charts.
The browser is now hitting another considerable milestone, becoming the number 1 browser in Japan. One Reddit user pointed this out and it looks like Brave is really outshining the competition.
All of the metrics point towards Brave Browser becoming a major threat for Google Chrome.
3. Domino’s Pizza Launches Bitcoin Competition in France, $110K Up for Grabs
It seems like another major public entity is getting more into the Bitcoin game.
Domino’s Pizza, the popular pizza chain, has a Bitcoin competition running from September 4 to October 6. The competition celebrates Domino’s 30th anniversary. Users can participate in the game when ordering pizza. The Bitcoin won will be transferred to the winner’s wallet on December 16.
Even if not involving Bitcoin in any particularly important way, the exposure for Bitcoin that this competition offers is impressive. Domino’s has worked on blockchain related efforts before, collaborating with SingularityNet to launch Artificial Intelligence related technology.
Pizza has a special place in the hearts of Bitcoin supporters. After all, one guy paid 10,000 BTC for two pizzas. Domino’s joined Bitcoin Pizza Day as well.
4. The Ethereum 2.0 Testnet is Arriving Soon
Development on the Ethereum 2.0 appears to travelling at an excellent pace, after Sigma Prime, the team behind Lighthouse Ethereum 2.0 client, said that major clients are now connected via LAN and can communicate with each other.
Ethereum 2.0 is a major step forward for the project, as it would bring some significant scaling and network operation improvements to the project. The arrival of Casper and sharding has been delayed but the general consensus is that it will arrive by the end of 2021. Ethereum 2.0 is expected to bring the kind of performance that would make Ethereum feasible as the world’s decentralized computer.
An Ethereum implementers call will be held soon to see how to take things forward, perhaps even getting the testnet operational.
5. LG May Launch a Blockchain Phone
Blockchain phones are becoming an actual thing, it seems, as LG is now considering launching its own blockchain phone. Ever since Samsung got into the game by announcing that its flagship phone the Galaxy S10 would have in-built support for cryptos, there’s been a real buzz in this particular niche, even more so than when HTC announced the Exodus blockchain phone.
Korean media outlet Chosun reported the news, saying that LG has completed some market research on decentralized applications and blockchain providers. LG has also applied for wallet related patents.
Whether or not LG go through with this, it points to an increasing acceptance of crypto as a thing of reality and not just something for tech savvy people on the internet.
This is as impressive a week of developments as any other. The fact is, these kinds of developments are arriving at an increasingly rapid pace, which shows you the snowball effect of persuasion that crypto is having on investors, companies and governments.