Bitcoin has had a splendid year. Despite being an unstable facilitator of black-market transactions created by an anonymous hacker to skirt government control, consumers can’t get enough of the cryptocurrency.

Bitcoin news site CoinDesk released some impressive numbers on Bitcoin’s year-over-year growth, from June 2013 to June 2014.

In absolute terms, Bitcoin seems to be doing well:

  • A rough measure of its total market worth (the capitalization of all Bitcoins in circulation) is up 800 percent, to $8.3 billion.
  • A rough measure of the number of Bitcoin owners (wallets) is up 700 percent.
  • Media attention, a rough measure of popularity and legitimacy, is up 300 percent (measured by mentions in Reuters, NYT, WSJ and a few other big outlets).
  • There is a big venture capital interest in Bitcoin startups, with investments up to $240 million.

CoinDesk did gloss over some of the crippling downsides to Bitcoin. Massive thefts are a growing problem for Bitcoin, as is the spectre of government regulation around the world.

So, these numbers are in no way reflective of how well Bitcoin can function as a currency in the long term. They are, however, a good measure of its popularity, which is an optimistic sign for its future.

VentureBeat

VentureBeat's mission is to be a digital town square for technical decision-makers to gain knowledge about transformative technology and transact. Our site delivers essential information on data technologies and strategies to guide you as you lead your organizations. We invite you to become a member of our community, to access:
  • up-to-date information on the subjects of interest to you
  • our newsletters
  • gated thought-leader content and discounted access to our prized events, such as Transform 2021: Learn More
  • networking features, and more
Become a member