This is probably one of the most prevalent questions you can hear in the blockchain sector:

“How close are we to mainstream adoption?”

Now I know, we all like to theorize. Especially during the bull market where let’s face it, it’s always much easier to attract attention when the industry is booming and the morale is beaming.

These days however, the market reflects a different situation with the bears running wild while many people are growing tired of seeing red on the coinmarketcap website almost every day.

Granted, we could see a trend reversal in the coming weeks and a bull run would definitely change the outlook in a significant manner.

But what’s fascinating is to look at the projections of mainstream adoption now at the “bad times” before the market euphoria settles in.

Not too long ago, PWC Global launched a survey with 600 executives from big mainstream companies across 15 territories, in order to gage the state of blockchain adoption at a the largest of scales.

I have to say, the results have definitely taken me by surprise.

As it turns out, 84% are actually involved with the technology at some level.

This is very significant here because once a new trend leaves the fringe territory and enters that of the majority… Then it would be only a matter of time until it takes the world by storm.

It may appear like it happened by total surprise, as if from one day to the other this new trend has just popped up and swiftly took over the markets.

Though in reality things would have been cooking for a while under the table where nobody was watching.

You see, from that aforementioned 84% , only 15% are actually live. 10% of them are launching pilot tests. There are some who paused their blockchain projects, others are still in the research phase, but a significant 32% currently at a stage of development.

While the fear merchants in television are selling you the latest spin-off of their signature “Doom & Gloom” reports, the foundations of a new paradigm are being laid as we speak.

This is probably a great moment to be in the sector, and if not, we shouldn’t be too far off. The truth is, you can’t really know for sure.

But one thing you can be almost certain of, is that this is an amazing time to be building on the blockchain. Because chance are that much like what happened with the internet, there’s going to be a day where everyone you know is on it.

Then one of two things will happen:

Either you would say “I knew”, or you’d be glad that you have build (or helped building) something valuable on the early days.

You know what they say, there is no time like the present.

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  1. Hafid

    As we work out the kinks of this new tech, I find myself confused most of the time. It is because of those willing to teach us simple folk how to adopt the tech to our advantage (like those on youtube, twitter, etc.) will be able to see more adoption. Focusing on the UI/UX application to suit those who just want to be able to use the tech (drive the car), not necessarily whats under the hood, is important for mass adoption. It is only natural that the big corps need to understand blockchain and crypto to be aware of potential opportunities in the future. However, when it comes down to it, it is the average person that will become the driving force of this new era! Great article! Mass adoption is truly around the corner!

    1. Adil Elias Post author

      That’s an excellent comment actually, maybe what the sector needs the most is great communicators that excel in explaining complex and new ideas to the masses in a compelling manner that they can relate to.

      Thanks for the comment @hntol and have a great day!

  2. CryptosDecrypted

    Very interesting article and well-written article Adil. I really like this statement ‘what’s fascinating is to look at the projections of mainstream adoption now at the “bad times” before the market euphoria settles in.’ Hope we all get to look back in comfort in 5-10 years!

    1. Adil Elias Post author

      I’m with you there, I think we are still a few years away, but meanwhile there’s some work being done that the majority of the public isn’t aware of, and one day it will seem like it’s gone mainstream overnight.

      You have a good point there btw, at the rate the updates it’s coming things could move faster.

  3. sandwichbill

    I also think we’ve a few years away from mass-adoption. Regulatory measures from the SEC and other leading economies will have to come first, to legitimze and validate Bitcoin etc, because crypto is just a shadow economy at the moment. But it’s bound to happen, crypto isn’t going away and it can’t be stopped and

    1. Adil Elias Post author

      That’s the biggest concern for sure, it’s even mentioned in the research article linked above as most of those 600 company leaders named regulations as the number 1 concern.

      But you’re right, it can’t be stopped and sooner or later its time will come.

  4. SugarFix

    It will just take one killer app for a bandwaggon to start rolling. Assuming that Ethereum is too slow for a mass adoption app and the first opportunity would have been Dawn 1.0 to start coding, give a latency of 6 months for someone to come up with something decent and a develpment time of 18 months ……I’d say June 2020 😛

    1. Adil Elias Post author

      Haha that’s a very specific prediction, and who knows? Maybe it’s somewhere around that time, maybe a little later, but either way it will take just a few killer apps as you said for the snowball to start rolling 🙂

    1. Adil Elias Post author

      I agree, there’s still a lot of things to be done to facilitate adoption, the user-friendliness for one is a big one There are bridges to be crossed still you’re right, but these are fixable issues I think. Oh, thanks for the article recommendation, I’ll check it out as I’m sure there’s some insight to be learned. 🙂 Thanks again!

    1. Adil Elias Post author

      I think in the same lines as well, as I said above I don’t see it coming next week haha but I don’t think it will take a couple of decades either, a few years seems like a safe bet considering the amount of people willing to build on the blockchain and other stats like 80% of people have already heard about it. 🙂

      Thanks @unitedcrypto! 🙂

  5. Tony Lee

    Mass adoption can only be done through a user friendly interoperability between technologies and blockchains, large brands have already set a side budgets to start solving these problems. Agree with conceptskin that there are major issues where companies have their own set of business challenges to overcome such as control of the central system, regulations and legal compliance’s which they need to adhere. Further to this the Cryptos space also face with many difficult challenges ahead such as adoption, ux, wild price swings with no stability, complicated swap between tokens/fiat. However you made a great write up about the alternative to blockchain technologies instead of trading. Nice one.

    1. Adil Elias Post author

      Yeah I’m with you and Conceptskip in that aspect, and apparently that’s the number one concern when the survey was made:

      But you touch on other important aspects: User-friendliness (100%), UX (though it seems like the most fixable problem as top designers join the sector or get hired) the swap between crypto and fiat is a complicated aspect for sure, but there are some solid developments underway (keep an eye on GoodMoney in 2019)

      All and all, you’re absolutely right, there are many things holding the sector back but let’s hope they get addressed in time… When the internet came in, not every person had a computer at home – nor a smartphone obviously – but it went mainstream nonetheless.

      Thanks for the great insightful comment Tony, I love conversations to picks my brain and make me think 🙂

  6. Ilia

    Adil I am sure that those speakers who today are inflating rumors about the essential demise of the crypto industry and the BTC rate bubble are actually secretly now while the market is at the bottom buying up assets. There are others who laugh at investors who entered the market in the winter or spring at a higher rate and how they will be surprised when the bear market is replaced by a bullish mood…! The mass introduction of crypto-industry products is already coming and we can confidently say that the time is not far off when we will live in a new world. Thanks for the interesting post.

    1. Adil Elias Post author

      Thanks Ilia and you’re absolutely right, there’s even governments who “banned” crypto like India and who are caught running Cryptojacking scripts from official websites… On one hand they try to sink the market and taint the mood (probably to pick up some crypto with cheap prices) and on the other hand, they must be secretly buying and mining.

  7. Yanika

    As usually very insightful article, really interesting to read it, while it is written in the typical Adil’s readers friendly style 🙂
    I am just thinking: is there any other stats lets say from the other 3 of the Big 4 Accounting Companies and if possible to take a look at their stats few years back. Will be interesting info to compare with. Did anything drastically change?

    1. Adil Elias Post author

      Haha thanks Yanika, I try to tell a story to entertain the readers a bit as I hope that everyday there’s new people from all walks of life taking their first steps in blockchain territory.

      That’s a great question, PWC didn’t reveal who are the 600 companies they only claimed that there are some of the biggest companies in the world, and the other things that were revealed was the doubts and concerns that each of that had about blockchain tech.

      Here’s a link for more information if you want:

  8. Siddartha

    One another thing is that two of the most populated countries in the world, India and China are not at all encouraging or even allowing use of cryptos. If that changes in near future, then we can easily do 10x or more. Right now people know about blockchain, cryptos but don’t wanna take risks due to legal issues.

  9. Adil Elias Post author

    That’s true. But there are many reports that the Chinese goverment are mining crypto, the veracity of the reports I’m not sure about, but if it’s true this could change the public outcome.

    The Indian goverment have been caught running cryptojacking scripts in their official website, so if they’re mining it’s actually in their benefit to announce some possible bans to drive the price down and pick up some cheaper coins, in the long run it seems that both countries will be on board but you never know.

    The legal aspect scares everyone, that’s a big concern you’re right.

  10. Steve

    I only started taking an interest in crypto just over a year ago. I had been aware of it and did try to get some Bitcoin a few years ago but it was too difficult and I didn’t really think it had much chance of succeeding. It was Bitcoin Cash that made me look into crypto more closely. Having felt like I missed the boat on Bitcoin, I investigated Bitcoin Cash but then could see that Bitcoin was probably the better option, so I finally bought some. It was easier than my first try but still not straightforward and I can understand why most people haven’t bothered getting any yet. Having a simple low cost way to exchange crpto with fiat will make a huge difference. I think it will be easier to persuade people of the advantages of owning just a tiny bit of crypto.

    The biggest problem I see is private keys. Most people are going to struggle keeping them away from hackers and if you write them down, you have to hope that they don’t get destroyed or burglars get them. I don’t keep any gold in my house and I don’t really want to keep digital gold here either. Hopefully that will be addressed soon.

    Mass adoption might happen faster if fiat currencies devalue at a quicker rate and I think that’s a possibility. It doesn’t feel like that’s going to happen soon but who knows?

    1. Adil Elias Post author

      You’re right, one of the biggest problems is private keys. Maybe a great part of success would come form the ability to create a secure and at the same time user-friendly wallet as well as the ability to smoothly exchange to fiat and/or use crypto to buy and sell.

      Thanks for the great and engaging comment btw!

  11. Atti

    I have read the post and all comments too. There are many-many good thoughts and I am afraid I could not write any special just I agree with your post and I can join to previous comments. We are living in historical times and I hope we will cheer when we will look 3-5 years later back what happend in 2018. Otherwise thank you Adil for your post!