A quarter of Brits consider crypto to be the future of finance

By Richard Jenkins
Monday, 28th March 2022, 1:26 pm
Updated Tuesday, 29th March 2022, 1:20 pm

A poll of 2,000 adults found 20 per cent have invested money in cryptocurrency and of those, more than half have downloaded multiple apps or trackers on their phones.

Of those who haven't yet invested, 72 per cent are familiar with the term, and almost three in 10 are likely to get on board with it if it were easier to understand.

Those aged 18-24 are the biggest advocates for this new way of living - with 58 per cent having already invested.

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Of these, 68 per cent have no regrets with their decision, as more than two thirds reckon their investments have led to a profit.

The research was commissioned by StarkWare Industries to celebrate its launch of a new platform designed to make crypto apps mainstream - StarkNet.

Following the research, the tech company created a 'Crypto to Coffee' calculator to find out how much cryptocurrency you would own today based on how many cups of coffee you've bought this year.

Reducing the carbon footprint of cryptocurrency

StarkWare's CEO, Uri Kolodny, said: "We’re seeing the rise of ‘blockchain Britain’ and it’s clear that crypto use is about to skyrocket.

"What people don’t realise is that the bandwidth of blockchain is tiny - even now it’s creaking under the weight of growing demand, so we are stepping in to solve the problem.”

It also emerged more than over a third of 18–24-year-olds think reducing the carbon footprint of cryptocurrency is important to them and would make them more inclined to use it.

Bitcoin, Ethereum and Dogecoin were the most familiar currencies among those polled – while Coin, Blockchain and Token were the top three terms that people understood.

A fifth are aware of the term ‘NFT’ and would invest if they knew more about them.

But for 21 per cent the main barrier is security, while one in six would be more open to the idea if NFTs were reasonably priced.

Despite the excitement around this digital transition, 38 per cent reckon cryptocurrency is simply too hard to understand.

And 44 per cent said it would be ‘almost impossible’ for them to ever be swayed into investing.

However, nearly three in 10 would invest if it were made simpler.

The reasons why Brits are put off from investing

StarkWare’s president, Professor Eli Ben-Sasson, said: “We’re hearing the public saying loud and clear that it all needs to be less confusing, and people don’t understand why there aren’t lots of user-friendly crypto apps for everyday uses.

“The answer is it simply hasn’t been practical to build them until now, because blockchain’s capacity crisis meant they’d be too slow and expensive to run.”

Being afraid of losing money was the top reason for people not wanting to invest (55 per cent) in crypto.

While finding it hard to understand (34 per cent), associating it too closely with gambling (31 per cent) and thinking it’s a scam (21 per cent) are also among the top 10 reasons for not wanting to invest.

The study, conducted via OnePoll, found 64 per cent are put off from investing, or investing more, due to the lighter regulation of cryptocurrency, while a quarter are generally resistant to change.

Eli Ben-Sasson added: “There’s some obscure maths research I did with colleagues years ago, long before blockchain, which hardly anyone bothered to read at the time, and weirdly it has provided a way to solve crypto’s big challenge.

"We deployed it to build StarkNet, which boosts blockchain bandwidth, and will be used to develop a huge range of crypto apps.

“Soon we’ll be paying in crypto when we would’ve used contactless and discovering a range of other uses beyond digital money, and we’ll be doing so with a clearer conscience as our innovation helps to address the problem of crypto’s environmental impact, massively cutting the carbon per transaction.”

Crypto products and [non-fungible tokens] are unregulated and can be highly risky. There may be no regulatory recourse for any loss from such transactions.