Bitcoin is a heavy proof-of-work based blockchain network and transactions take time and effort to undertake. But, that hasn’t stopped the largest digital currency by market capitalization becoming one of the biggest transactors of value around the world. Recently, it has overtaken popular payment platform Paypal in transacted amount during the last quarter, according to Blockdata. Now, it has set its sights on the second largest biggest payment processor in the world; Mastercard.
Due to a recent surge in the Bitcoin price index and increasing popularity of the digital currency sector, the network is seeing record transactions when translated into USD equivalent value. According to figures from Blockdata, the BTC network processed a massive $489 billion on average in each quarter. It has surpassed Paypal’s $300 billion value in the process. Paypal is much older than Bitcoin itself and this shows the meteoric rise of the digital currency over the years. Even though Paypal isn’t a natural competitor of Bitcoin as both process entirely different native currencies and do it in processes that are poles apart, Bitcoin managed to beat it in Dollar value. This is despite Bitcoin has a limited number of transactions and they take more time than an average Paypal one.
The next significant target for the cryptocurrency is MasterCard which processed around $1.3 trillion in transactions while VISA, the biggest player in the segment does a massive $3.2 trillion in the process. This means that Bitcoin transactions have to rise around 7 times before they can surpass VISA itself. But, that is completely achievable in the coming years as the cryptocurrency becomes more and more scarce and value keeps on increasing all the while transactions becoming easier.
Interestingly, the Blockdata report couldn’t find enough data to indicate that the number of Bitcoin sent per transaction was increasing. So, if it is assumed to be constant over time, only a value increase in BTC price can result in the cryptocurrency challenging VISA and MasterCard in the future.
However, this instantaneous mode of payment was never Bitcoin’s forte or planned purpose at all. Bitcoin was always meant to be a long-term HODLing cryptocurrency that is used when needed only. But, apart from on-chain solutions, there are now off-chain solutions available around the world including layer 2 solutions and the lightning network. Together, they are probably already worth a lot more than $489 billion, possibly above $1 trillion already. So, there is a strong possibility that the BTC transaction values will surpass these major payment processors much earlier than expected.
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