Although there are many industries around the world that cryptocurrencies have managed to disrupt for the better, there are some sectors where the concept of cryptos is taking a little longer to sink in. In recent years, many industries have been disrupted by cryptocurrencies, primarily as a means of transferable value. Some of the leading companies and corporations now accept cryptocurrencies, whether it’s Subway or Microsoft. However, there is still some hesitancy regarding crypto adoption in the following markets.
The leading search engines and social media platforms have been reticent to accept the advertisement of cryptocurrencies to their users. Both Google and Facebook announced a widespread ban of all cryptocurrency advertising by June 2018. It was a policy also adopted by Twitter. The financial volatility associated with cryptocurrencies has been a hot topic online for many years now and many believe that preventing users from having their fingers burnt by the crypto markets was a key factor in Google’s rationale.
However, the widespread ban on cryptocurrency advertising was short-lived. Just three months after all mention of cryptos was removed from all Google-owned products, it announced it would reverse its decision, only allowing crypto exchanges to advertise themselves via Gooogle in the US and Japan. Advertisements for cryptocurrency initial coin offerings (ICOs) are still being roundly rejected, along with advertisements offering “trading advice”.
The scary thing is that the market capitalization of the US’ largest bank, JPMorgan Chase is just under $400 billion and the market cap of the entire crypto market is said to be worth around $470 billion. Is it the case that the banking industry is merely feeling threatened? Cryptocurrencies have struggled to infiltrate the global banking sector because many banks don’t like the volatility and instability they generate. They are also fearful of the fact that cryptocurrencies have been used for money laundering in the past and don’t want to adopt illegitimate infrastructures.
If there is one cryptocurrency that could bridge the divide and infiltrate into the banking world it is probably Ripple. Ripple is a real-time gross settlement system and remittance network, designed to make cross-border payments as frictionless as possible. Ripple connects banks and payment providers with speed and precision. Last year, Banco Santander announced a partnership with Ripple for payment processing, creating the OnePay FX mobile app designed to make cross-border payments easier than ever before. Santander’s positive experience could see other banks slowly follow suit in the long run. However, IBM has also developed its own cross-border platform using blockchain technology called We.trade, which is supported by some of the heavyweights of the financial market and could throttle the growth of Ripple.
In one of the fastest-growing industries on the planet, iGaming, very few operators accept the use of cryptocurrencies today. One look at the deposit and withdrawal options for leading poker room, PokerStars and you’ll find that only traditional banking methods and e-wallets are accepted here. Furthermore, no major sports betting companies accept the use of Bitcoin and other leading cryptocurrencies as a form of payment. Most iGaming operators would point to the volatility and uncertainty surrounding the value and regulation of cryptocurrencies as one of the main reasons behind their failure to adopt cryptos.
Finally, it’s also worth considering that cryptocurrencies have struggled to take off as a legitimate payment method in the world of sport. Although some advertising partnerships have been agreed with cryptocurrency trading platforms in the English Premier League, notably eToro and CoinDeal, widespread adoption of cryptocurrencies for the payment of match tickets, club merchandise and even player wages have not yet materialised.
Many of the highest-profile cryptocurrency partnerships in professional sport were agreed during the bull market of 2017 and early 2018, but whether the increasingly bearish conditions will see sports teams and individuals remain as welcoming and accepting of cryptos remains to be seen. The reaction of fans to the cryptocurrency markets could in fact be the deciding factor for clubs that want to protect their local, regional and national reputations.
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