Weekly Flip Thru: The Rise of Move-To-Earn Apps, New Stats on Global Crypto Adoption, and Hardware Wallets Make a Comeback
Aloha, crypto fans! Hopefully, you’re riding a wave of good vibes as we plunge into the week. To buoy your spirits, why don’t we wade into the latest headlines? The big waves in crypto this week are driven by a new global cryptocurrency adoption survey, the rising tide of move-to-earn apps that pay users crypto for working out, and a renewed interest in offline hardware wallets.
Here are the biggest stories in crypto for the week of August 29, 2022.
A global crypto adoption survey puts U.S. crypto ownership at 13% (Cryptonews.com) The consumer research and advice site Finder.com reported that crypto ownership in the United States sits at 13% according to their latest Cryptocurrency Adoption Index. The global survey looked at crypto ownership statistics for 26 countries, collecting demographics like male vs. female ownership (74% male to 26% female in the U.S.), popularity of different cryptocurrencies (bitcoin ranked at the top, with 36% in the U.S.), and crypto ownership by age group. Not surprisingly, the vast majority of crypto owners in the U.S. skewed younger, with only 9% of crypto owners in the 55+ age group.
Where does the U.S. rank globally in terms of crypto adoption? The United States ranked 17th out of 26 countries surveyed by Finder.com, behind countries like India, Vietnam, and Nigeria.
These apps let you earn crypto when you work out (TIME) There are some new movers and shakers in Web3 and crypto. The crop of move-to-earn apps is growing at a healthy clip. What are they? Basically, they’re gamified step counters or fitness trackers that reward users with crypto based on how much they exercise. Apps such as StepN have already made strides by incentivizing people’s behavior with monetary rewards. Granted, users have to open their blockchain wallets to secure a pair of digital sneakers in the form of an NFT before they can participate in the StepN game, and the game developers almost certainly earn a commission on any sales through their in-app marketplace.
But is the move-to-earn model a “step” in the right direction? Research has shown that people feel more motivated to follow through on their fitness goals when they have some skin in the game, and investing in some bejeweled NFT sneakers so that you can flex to your friends and social networks might be a nifty example of that. Crypto’s value may be famous for swinging upwards or downwards, but your health? That’s priceless.
Hardware wallets are hot commodities as investors seek out crypto security (Bloomberg) Hardware wallets have seen a spike in interest from crypto investors in recent months. A series of high-profile hacks targeting internet-connected crypto wallets, sometimes called “hot” wallets, drove a surge of web traffic to hardware wallet makers like Arculus, Ledger, and KeepKey. The most recent hack to solana wallets affected more than 8,000 wallet addresses and hackers nabbed at least $5 million worth of crypto.
Hardware wallets are often the size of a USB thumb drive or a deck of playing cards and they keep crypto investors’ private keys offline. This provides an added layer of security for investors in the realm of self-custodial wallets. The increased interest in hardware wallets comes during a time when multiple crypto lenders and exchanges have filed for bankruptcy, effectively locking up or freezing assets for thousands of investors. The bankruptcy filings and moves to halt withdrawals on crypto exchanges drives home the common refrain in the crypto community, “not your keys, not your crypto.”
Fed commits to further rate hikes, promises to combat inflation even if it will 'bring some pain' says Powell (NPR) Bitcoin (BTC) prices were trending down on Friday morning following the much-anticipated remarks from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell at the annual Jackson Hole Economic Symposium. The U.S. central bank reaffirmed a plan to continue raising interest rates in an ongoing effort to fight inflation. "Reducing inflation is likely to require a sustained period of below-trend growth," Powell said in his speech from Jackson Hole. The resulting economic slowdown will "bring some pain to households and businesses. These are the unfortunate costs of reducing inflation."
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