Richard Svinkin is co-founder and COO at bitcoin remittance service Freemit, and a former UX lead for Kodak and Merck.
In this opinion piece, Svinkin argues that the bitcoin industry’s attempts to revamp the technology’s user experience have so far been misguided, and that they may have obscured the true value of the technology.
The bitcoin market cap is hovering around $10bn, investment in bitcoin and blockchain startups is staggering and everyone wants in on the game, from newly-minted entrepreneurs to banks.
But there’s a problem. All the focus and energy is going into determining the right way to rebuild the global financial infrastructure. In the rush to take down banking, and be more like bankers in the process, the core mission of the bitcoin project seems to have been left behind.
Many startups have tried selling bitcoin to the masses as an alternative to fiat currency, and they’ve largely failed, pivoting to infrastructure or trying to redefine bitcoin.
Now, we’ll see some of the usual suspects try to sell it to Wall Street as an investment product – an asset class. This is already true in places like China but, as we well know, the entire