Some of the folks at BitPay have just released the stats of 2014's Bitcoin performance – the numbers that get less fanfare than the price, but are no less indicative of the currency's prospects.
Aggregated and hashed are:
- Countries with highest use
- Big-name merchant acceptance
- Trading volume
- Number of active wallets
- Venture capital investment
- Overall merchant adoption
Bitcoin is used all over the world, but there are some areas that see higher concentrations of activity. The five countries where Bitcoin is used most are the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, and the Netherlands.
Despite the 2014 Bitcoin price falling far below winter 2013's boom in price, trading of the crypto coin increased by over 50 % last year. The addition of many new exchanges (after the Mt. Gox debacle cleared so much of the market) has meant more trusted trading options.
More trusted still would be trustless exchanges (exchanges which don't utilize a human third party at all), which are also in development.
BitPay didn't mention their qualification for an “active” wallet, but even if the wallets opened were only used once, the numbers are pretty impressive when you consider that Bitcoin is the first peer-to-peer cryptographically-based currency in history.
Industry Comes A'Callin'
The five industries that flocked most to Bitcoin in 2014 were payments, electronics, travel, gaming, and charity. Some of the biggest names in each sector were:
Payments: PayPal, Global Payments, Sum Up
Gaming: XBox Live, Xsolla, Twitch
Have a Venture on Capital?
Investment interest in Bitcoin companies rose more than threefold in 2014 compared to 2013. The biggest investment round came from Xapo, with a whopping US$40 million. Next were BitPay and Blockchain.info, who both received an influx of US$30 million.
Six Figures Are Reached
Last is the holy grail of merchant adoption. In 2014 a full 100,000 merchants were accepting Bitcoin, and BitPay reports that they process payments for over half of them, about 53,738 merchants.
What was the most significant moment in Bitcoin for YOU in 2014?
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