The 2022 bitcoin conference in Miami this year brought several investors, entrepreneurs, and others to the table to discuss something that many analysts and traders haven’t talked about in some time… competition for the world’s number one digital currency by market cap.
The Dominance of Bitcoin Is Up in the Air
Up to this point, bitcoin has been at the top of the financial ladder in the crypto space. Nobody and nothing can compete with it. Even the world’s second-largest digital currency by market cap – Ethereum – doesn’t present enough of a threat to dethrone a cryptocurrency that has been around for roughly 13 years at this state.
But sentiment surrounding the dominance of bitcoin appears to be dwindling as of late. With the development of the defi (decentralized finance) space, for example, there are several new tokens and blockchain systems being introduced every day, and everyone at the conference seemed a little concerned about the future of BTC. Would these tokens and networks potentially be able to remove bitcoin from its number one status?
One of the people to speak at the conference about this was CEO and co-founder of Lightning Labs Elizabeth Stark. The company managed to raise more than $70 million in series B funding last month and has made a name for itself further establishing the bitcoin Lightning Network.
Stark made it clear that the Lightning Network is popular because it frees up the bitcoin network, thus making it more accessible. She said:
People want access to bitcoin, the asset… When you’re looking at stability, security and the global payments use case, and the global transaction aspects, that’s where bitcoin and the Lightning Network will shine.
Not long ago, the company introduced a tool it’s calling Taro that will allow unbanked people to send and receive money in the form of stable currencies to mobile apps. Stark commented:
If I were Visa, I’d be scared, because there are a lot of people out there that have mobile phones, but now don’t need to tap into the traditional system, and then the merchants don’t need to pay the three percent fee plus 30 cents [for a transaction]. You can have fees that are dramatically lower than the legacy system.
Connecting to the Lightning Network
Johan Kerbrat – the CTO of crypto trading platform Robinhood – said his company is working to ensure the Lightning Network is available to users of the Robinhood platform. He mentioned:
We will support Lightning on the [Robinhood] app, so you will be able to connect it to pay merchants directly with the Lightning Network. It also means you will be able to kind of create a channel between people using Robinhood outside of Robinhood and be able to exchange bitcoin for almost zero fees.
At the time of writing, bitcoin is trading for around $31,000.