2018 has been one of the most difficult years for both cryptocurrencies and the blockchain industry. During this bearish year, the market lost more than 80% of its overall value since January. Even though a lot of predictions and speculations have been made for 2018, very few were actually realized.
If anything, 2018 proved that it’s, in fact, the blockchain, the underlying technology of cryptocurrencies, that’s going to be the technology that will most probably influence our future and disrupt multiple industries the most. That said, let’s have a look at some of the blockchain technology predictions for 2019.
1. The blockchain sphere will welcome new and exciting players
Many industry experts agree that 2019 will be a great year for cryptocurrencies. 2019 should see a wide blockchain adoption and with it, a larger number of start-ups and blockchain companies. Blockchain technology will be at the top of the innovation charts for either disrupting already existing industries as well as for creating entirely new business models.
“There are a number of unsuccessful coins that have gone under. This is the reality of any new venture. There’s always a risk of failure in finance and investing. It is likely that weak coins, which are not backed by legitimate, promising projects, will continue to fail, and that the more compliant, problem-solving businesses will see their coins survive. I hope that in 2019 regulation will be introduced and will further allow legitimate businesses to thrive, making cryptocurrencies more reliable – while also stabilizing the market as it continues to attract more traditional investors,” Frank Wagner, Co-founder, and CEO of INVAO
2. Existing companies, institutions, and governments will invest more in blockchain
2019 will be a year in which many large corporations and companies will most probably spend millions on blockchain initiatives. Numerous big professional services/accounting companies such as PWC, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, and KPMG have already restructured their systems in order to fit in the ever-increasing need for blockchain development and blockchain adoption.
3. The industry will continue to improve its image
The blockchain technology may very well change its name in the following months. The term blockchain will be replaced by another more specific one: DLT, short for distributed ledger technology. That is because the term blockchain is heavily associated with cryptocurrencies. While this is not particularly a bad thing, the cryptocurrency industry has had its fair share of hacks and scams, which all tend to tarnish the image of this exciting industry.
In order for the industry to evolve and the technology reach a wider acceptance, the blockchain industry needs to separate the term of blockchain from that of cryptocurrencies in the minds of people and businesses.
4. Decentralized apps will play an even bigger role than before
Ethereum’s market cap might have gone down in 2018, but it’s still the biggest and most important blockchain platform for dApp and smart contract development. Decentralization has always been at the forefront of blockchain adoption, but 2019 is expected to be the year where most of the world’s dApps will hit a million users a day.
5. Blockchain will be just as big as the AI and IoT technologies
Blockchain technology was on everybody’s lips in 2018, but there are many who argue that technology alone is not enough to fully disrupt most industries. Nevertheless, we are currently seeing amazing advancements in the sectors of AI, Big Data, and IoT. 2019 is expected to be the year when we will see blockchain meeting the technologies mentioned above.
“In fintech, which most customers see as a commodity, firms will leverage technologies such as Big Data, AI, and IoT to drive operational efficiency, as well as provide more competitive pricing and client-centric, niche offerings.” Brent Jaciow, Head of Blockchain Affairs at Utopia Music,
6. Decentralized crypto exchanges will grow
2019 is expected to be a very good year for cryptocurrencies in general. However, despite the bearish year, cryptocurrency exchanges have become even more popular in 2018. Decentralized exchanges will most probably become increasingly prominent in markets where cross-border payment and investing. Not only will the number of decentralized crypto exchanges increase, but they will most likely be able to meet the quality standards of their centralized counterparts. In 2019, decentralized crypto exchanges will offer far better liquidity levels, higher security features, and better user experience.
“Blockchain will begin to bring about an even greater shift towards financial inclusion in capital markets globally. Much of the world’s population live in emerging markets, with many excluded from traditional financial institutions. Decentralized exchanges will become increasingly prominent in these markets for cross-border payment and investing. I believe that as more people will embrace Blockchain in 2019, we may begin to shift in these trends.” Craig McGregor, co-founder, and CEO of DSTOQ.
7. STOs will become more important
Security tokens and security token offerings (STOs) are set to be the new trend in 2019. Last year has shown us that the general investment moves out of the utility token space and into the digital assets with clear cases. As more and more companies and institutions realize that not all projects need tokens and security token offerings with real asset backing will inevitably become more prevalent in the sphere.
“Recent market volatility has left investors resistant to the ICO model. As a result, more people are looking for a more regulated and secure investment option – which is why STOs will begin to establish prominence as we head into 2019. As trust builds with STOs, I believe we will see both seasoned and first-time investors gravitating towards this model. Security tokens may come out on top.” Craig McGregor, co-founder, and CEO of DSTOQ.
8. The demand for blockchain experts will increase
The world is slowly but surely moving to blockchain as one of its primary technologies. As the said technology gets more recognition outside the cryptosphere, more and more companies will look to apply it. This will translate in a bigger need for blockchain experts, blockchain developers, advisors, architects, in short, people with specific blockchain skills. Since the technology is relatively new, this will be a somewhat difficult time for companies looking to find people with a broad understanding of blockchain and skills to boot.
9. The industry will make various steps toward fixing its three major problems
The blockchain industry has always had three main problems: scalability, decentralization, and security. There have been numerous technical barriers that have undermined the trust and capabilities required for blockchain as a technology to experience mainstream adoption.
There are numerous projects that aim to tackle these problems independently, but there still are a lot of shortcomings, as real-world breakthroughs regarding scalability and performance are expected to come from now on, in the years to come.
As entrepreneurs and enterprises introduce and implement blockchain technology, a major stumbling block the industry faces is the balance between scalability and security. 2019 may indeed be the year we address the existing challenges, see traction for the technology beyond the testnet phase, and welcome many far-reaching dApps.” Xinshu Dong, CEO of Zilliqa.
The consensus among crypto and blockchain experts is that 2019 will be a very good year for both these intertwined industries. If even half of these predictions are actually to take place, then we can be sure that 2019 will indeed be a very good year.