Virtual Currency market size is forecast to reach $1.48 billion by 2025 and set to grow at a CAGR of 6% during 2020-2025. Virtual currencies facilitate an innovative method of payment. Bitcoin is one among such elevating digital currencies with ever-growing adoption, worldwide, as a developed payment method. Now-a-days, virtual money are gaining more traction from online retailers. An increase in the proliferation of malicious software and recognition of virtual currencies by developed countries are driving the growth of the global virtual currency market.
- Europe occupied a notable share in the global virtual currency market owing to the increasing demand for digital money by cryptocurrency companies. They are engaged in buying digital virtual currency online.
- The growing popularity of bitcoin, as virtual currency is an unregulated digital money, which is used in transitions without the involvement of banks and provides worldwide financial integration, is likely to aid in the market growth of virtual currency.
- The countries with less developed financial infrastructure and high smartphone usage for example, nearly 50% of Kenya's GDP is functioned by digital currency. Hence, this act as a beneficial opportunity for the virtual currency trading.
Type - Segment Analysis
Bitcoin segment occupied the largest share in the virtual currency market as of 2018. The prevalence of unregulated nature of bitcoins is increasing the demand for Bitcoin market. The rise in a number of online transactions due to the widespread application of wireless communication is set to drive the bitcoin share in the virtual currency market. Bitcoin is a novelty in the financial sector which enables transparent and efficient global commerce.
In this contemporary world, start-ups, entrepreneurs, small, medium-sized and large enterprises are turning to revolutionary cryptocurrency, as there are no credit card fees. Hence cryptocurrency solution vendors are concentrating on venture capital investments, partnerships, and collaborations to provide end-to-end solutions. People are buying bitcoins as an investment, using them to purchase merchandise. These transactions are recorded in a public log that does not disclose the names of buyers and sellers. This the use of bitcoins has become lucrative for online drug buyers and people who all engage in illicit activities such as fund transfer.
Cryptocurrency plays a prominent role in the blockchain technology. Cryptocurrencies solve the issues of micro-payments in the gaming industry. In addition to this, features such as cryptocurrency and micro-payments in blockchain games will boost the revenues in the global gaming industry.
Geography - Segment Analysis
Europe dominated the virtual currency market share, which accounts for more than 40%, followed by North America and APAC. In Europe, especially Germany is contributing a significant share in the cryptocurrency market. Increasing adoption of the digital currency by several traders such as semiconductor and electronics manufacturers, banking and finance organizations, software solutions providers, e-commerce companies, research organizations, financial consulting companies along with the presence of a wide number of mining pools in this region are burgeoning the revenue of virtual currency market. All these factors together boosting the Europe cryptocurrency market. In North America, the eminent countries such as the U.S. and Canada are representing increasing adoption rates for cryptocurrencies. Market contributors namely Expresscoin, Coinbase Inc., ANXBTC Bitcoin Exchange, and BitPay presence coupled with a large number of bitcoin mining activities in this region are highlighting it as a hub for virtual currency market growth.
Drivers – Virtual Currency Industry Outlook
- Growing Digital Coin importance is fuelling the virtual currency market growth
Currently, the digital coin market is witnessing strong growth, mainly driven by Bitcoin. Investors are preferring the Bitcoin network, as a safe option for investment globally, this is because of their huge market share and increasing adoption rate when compared with other digital currencies. Thus, this has become a primary growth driver of the global digital coin market. In recent years, the growing usage of different cryptocurrencies has had a significant impact on the global e-commerce market. This is because of the ease of transactions without repetitive authentication and zero service charges from the bank during transactions made it popular.
- Cryptocurrency dominance in developed countries
Acceptance of virtual as an international means for the transaction, and is not bound to any of the interest rates in any of the countries. This saves both time and money, in so doing increasing the size of the virtual currency market. Miners are focusing on the expansion of large-scale dedicated rigs in order to increase the profitability of their cryptocurrency mining ventures. Therefore, this profitability of cryptocurrency mining ventures is projected to be one of the primary growth factors for the virtual currency market.
Challenges – Virtual Currency Industry
- Growing Security Issues during Digital Money Transactions – Uncertain Regulatory Status of Virtual Currency
However, the lack of financial measures and yet to be sorted security, privacy and control issues are shrinking the standards of the virtual currency, thereby restraining the growth of the virtual currency market. Additionally, the rising criminal activity using this currency has become a challenging task for central banks, departments of finance, financial regulators, fiscal authorities and statistical authorities. Economic statistics, tax leakage, anti-money laundering, payment systems and settlement infrastructure, monetary and exchange rate policy, consumer protection, and impact of financial regulation on financial service providers are some of the regulatory challenges posed by virtual currencies. For Instance, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), announced a regulation to tax all virtual currencies such as bitcoins as a property. So, it has become mandate for the users to maintain a record of all bitcoin purchases made during the year. This increased accounting complexity is leaving a negative impact on the bitcoin market growth.
Product launches are key strategies that are highly adopted by the players to mark their position in the virtual currency marketplace. In 2018, the market of virtual currency has been consolidated by the top five players accounting for 34% of the share. Bitpay, Coinbase, Coinjar, Elliptic, Gocoin, Millipay Systems, Ripple, Safello, Unicoin, and Xapo are the virtual currency top 10 companies.
- In December 2017, NVIDIA announced a product launch of TITAN V. It is a powerful GPU for PC which is driven by the advanced GPU architecture, NVIDIA Volta. TITAN V is an ideal option for scientific simulation, due to its computational processing and extreme energy efficiency. This GPU is widely used in mining of the cryptocurrency, thus, it is participating in driving the virtual currency revenue.
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