Everyone has heard of or remembers reading about some teenager who became a millionaire post the 2017 Bitcoin tsunami. How many millionaires, or more accurately, BTC addresses with over a million dollars currently exist?
Given the sharp fluctuations in BTC prices — this year alone has seen a 200% rise in price — the worth of these addresses is likely to show a roller coaster like graph. Another point to consider is that one may hold several addresses, with no limit on how many, to split the wealth and stay even more anonymous. The blockchain is public, and all addresses and their holdings can be seen on explorers. So we can never tell the exact number of bitcoin millionaires.
Here is the latest BTC.com explorer graphic that shows that currently over 12,000 addresses holding between 100–1000 BTC. At the current rate, a hundred bitcoins is around a million dollars.
Some data concerning BTC from Buybitcoinworldwide.com — over 3 million bitcoins are yet to be mined out of 21 million. Thus over 85% of bitcoins have been mined. At the current difficulty levels, around 1800 bitcoins are being minted each day. Once all bitcoins have been mined, there will be no more rewards for miners, and only processing fees for transactions will be available as profit.
What do bitcoin millionaires, especially those still in teens or twenties, do with their wealth or newfound status? Buying villas on the Italian seashore comes first to mind, but there are other things on their minds.
Erik Finman is 20, became a millionaire with bitcoin, and has now floated Metal Pay to compete with Facebook’s Libra. Metal Pay is a peer to peer payment app with its own coin, Metal. Since July, Metal is reportedly down by over half, and is way down its original listing price of $12, trading around forty cents.
Metal Pay is a payment processor system, and is one among many such merchant apps and platforms. These are likely to form one major pillar of the new crypto led future, where anyone can pay using their preferred coin at the shop or online.
One of the largest, or perhaps the largest, is CoinPayments that runs on a fast blockchain, Velas. Velas is addressing the hurdles found with bitcoin and ether chains — speed, scalability, security and decentralization. It also incorporates artificial intelligence, which selects stakers and rewards them algorithmically. With blocks created on demand, the chain can process 30,000 transactions per second.
Talking about adoption and bitcoin, can one stay away from the dark side of cryptocurrency? Hamas is reportedly said to be using crypto for funding. The same CoinDesk report also compares it to civil usage of crypto, and finds it more prevalent and larger in quantities.
Freelancers and traders in Gaza deal with larger transactions, with some running into millions of dollars. There could be around 20 such dealers in Gaza, trying to fill the vacuum created by unavailability of Paypal. Another reported project is that of building crypto based charities in Palestine to aid schools.
Photo by Alex Suprun on Unsplash