According to the following infographic from Coupofy, Bitcoin usage on Overstock.com tends toward everyday, household items.
The image visualizes data that the creators have culled from various sources about the usage of bitcoins, and notably, transaction volume using Bitcoin as a currency increased by almost 100% between 2013 and 2014, despite the downward trajectory of the Bitcoin price all last year.
The subject of bitcoins the currency versus Bitcoin the investment strategy has been a common theme throughout the history of the technology. While the technology was propelled by early adopters who saw the value of transparency in transactions as well as digital precision in remittance, the first successful use case of bitcoins was truly in dark net markets like the Silk Road, where its censorship-resistance and difficulty to track made it unique among options. Indeed, Silk Road couldn’t have happened without something like bitcoins.
The jury is still out on 2015 and Bitcoin more generally, but it seems that if trends like those depicted in the graphic continue, “mass adoption” could be a reality within our lifetime. The question of what mass adoption really means, however, has yet to be settled. Some believe that it means hundreds of millions or even billions of people holding Bitcoin wallets and intimately familiar with how the currency works. Others define it more as a situation wherein most transactions are handled by the Bitcoin network but very few actually come into contact with bitcoins.
What do you think? Is merchant adoption an important aspect in the progress of Bitcoin, or a sideshow that doesn’t matter in the end?