Crypto 2022: ‘Expect it to get even wilder’ – predictions from top industry experts
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The past year was crypto’s biggest yet in terms of mainstream attention, growing adoption and bulging market caps. So what might 2022 bring? Stockhead has been catching up with crypto-industry leaders to get their Nostradamus-like thoughts…
On institutional adoption and NFTs:
“2021 has been a wild year for the crypto market, and I think we can expect that 2022 will be even wilder. The two main themes we saw in 2021 were the institutional adoption of cryptocurrencies and the explosion of NFTs. It’s safe to say that both of these themes will continue.
“I predict NFTs will gain adoption in other areas besides art and digital memorabilia. We’re just starting to scratch the surface of what they can actually do. For example, NFTs can be used for creating digital tickets to sporting events and concerts. They can even be used to digitally represent physical items such as real estate deeds.”
On DAOs (decentralised autonomous organisations):
“Each year there seems to be a new theme that explodes out of nowhere. I think that will be DAOs in 2022. We already saw the trend start back in November with ConstitutionDAO — a group that raised US$40 million in seven days in a collective effort to purchase a copy of the US Constitution.
“I wouldn’t be surprised to see more organisations, even a few that are outside of the crypto sector, launch DAOs and create governance tokens rather than using traditional fundraising routes like venture capital raises or IPOs.”
On cyber attacks:
“On a more grim note, I predict there will be unprecedented cyber attacks this coming year in the general tech sector as well as the crypto space. These attacks will likely affect major industries and highly critical infrastructure. As one example, we are already beginning to see the potential fallout from the Log4j vulnerability.”
Liquidity Wizard, founder of Tokemak (TOKE) – an innovative, sustainable deep liquidity engine for DeFi projects.
On the broader crypto market:
“I think 2022 will be a bull market for crypto, but also a year for decoupling. The market cap of paperweight tokens from yesteryear will finally roll over to the market cap of tokens that actually do useful things.
“And there are a lot of those good projects – for example, Alchemix, SPELL, OHM, Concave, Redacted, The Graph, Ankr, MOVR, Zodiac… and let’s not forget TOKE.
“Also, I think SUSHI will come back from the brink in 2022, and if zkSync or Starkware [zk-rollup scalability protocols] can work, then that’ll be insane.”
“Within DeFi, the Curve Wars will heat up and then begin to evolve into a more strategic liquidity arms race. Protocols will continue to entrench themselves as the power users of DeFi, and the ecosystem will look more and more opaque to outsiders looking in (as base level infrastructure generally does).”
1/ Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! My gift to you is the words of John Perry Barlow’s Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace in 1996. Today his words are more important and relevant than ever. Huddled masses, you are in control now. We can finally realize his vision…
— ┻┳ Liquidity Wizard 2.☢️ (@LiquidityWizard) December 24, 2021
On cross-chain interoperability:
“Cross-chain infrastructure and utilisation will expand rapidly, leading to new products and opportunities, as well as some confusion. Protocols focused on moving data, tokens, and liquidity across chains will flourish.
On crypto gaming:
“Most of all, 2022 will be the year of gaming. Built on the shoulders of DeFi infrastructure, GameFi projects (such as Illuvium and Ember Sword) will explode.
“Crypto will finally have its B2C [business-to-consumer] moment as gaming/gambling/experiences/entertainment drive the masses into Web3, often without them even realising it. Traders won the last phase of crypto. Gamers are about to win the next.”
On the next major NFT (non-fungible token) trend:
“I’m predicting that Audio NFTs will take a lot of the attention and that by the end of 2022 we will have the beginning of a new ‘Music3’ industry ecosystem.”
I’m almost 100% sure that @EmanateOfficial has put more songs and artists on-chain, and processed more payments on-chain than any other Web3 music project in history.
Happy to be proven wrong but I don’t think I am.
— SΞAN G | emanate.live | modadao.io | #Music3 (@seanogardner) December 15, 2021
On Ethereum vs Bitcoin:
“I think Ethereum’s going to outpace Bitcoin significantly next year.”
On the likely state of the market in 2022:
“If I had to make a call, I’d say we do still get a pump into March, but not as high as what people have been hoping for. I think the market will be flat-ish throughout 2022 but it will be incredibly productive in terms of building. People will start to back the projects that are building real things and move away from speculation and memes.”
On ZK proofs technology:
“2022 will undoubtedly be the year that zero-knowledge proof innovations reach millions of new users. Universal ZK constructs are the building blocks for Web3, and the ability to build succinct, private, and fair products will allow for further adoption of all blockchain technology.”
“Even more so, the ability to achieve true interoperability between blockchains will come to fruition in 2022. At Harmony, we have built bridges to Ethereum and Bitcoin and are working on more bridges connecting Proof-of-Work and Proof-of-Stake chains.
“This is fundamental to accelerating adoption. We expect to see more chain-to-chain interactions in 2022 because of all of the innovation in connecting blockchains.”
On Bitcoin mining’s global presence:
“In 2022, Bitcoin mining will continue to flourish outside of mainland China. China has had a love/hate relationship with Bitcoin from the very beginning, and its stance on the industry has changed several times over the years.
“But following the domestic political considerations that led to the change in policy this year regarding crypto exchanges and mining, I do not expect China to pivot again to re-embrace crypto.
“These changes in the competitive dynamic will continue to benefit Bitcoin miners in the United States, and elsewhere, outside of China.”
Gunnar Jaerv, co-founder and COO of First Digital Trust (FDT) – a leading Hong Kong custodian servicing traditional and digital assets.
On the regulatory landscape:
“In 2022, we’ll see more founders and leaders in crypto sit at the table with regulators to set out clearer regulatory roadmaps, which will be crucial in accelerating the industry forward.
“More governments will recognise that being more flexible and collaborative will bring greater financial benefits to local economies, whether in the form of tax or employment opportunities for citizens in the industry. And those nations who embrace DeFi will succeed more than those who limit growth and consequently stifle innovation.
“Regulators are primarily focused on protecting investors from the proliferation of criminal activities in the DeFi space through incidents of scams and fraud. We’ll see them targeting companies that fail to provide that protection.”
“I don’t think we’ll see a massive rally for Bitcoin in 2022, as a lot of people expect. The reason for this is a lot of ETFs [exchange traded funds] and CFDs [contracts for differences] that are leveraged, are effectively increasing the supply of Bitcoin artificially. So, with that in play, the traditional argument that Bitcoin has a limited supply, is no longer valid.”
“The adoption of crypto will keep accelerating as more and more institutions are coming to the space, just like CBA [Commonwealth Bank of Australia] recently did.
Working at the forefront of crypto adoption is a lot harder than most people think. Just Sayin'
— Sergei Sergienko (@svsergienko) December 17, 2021
“I think GameFi and metaverse projects will play and be very important in the industry for at least the first half of the year. Later on in the year, the whole sector may morph into wages/salaries and other remittances in crypto.”
“Regulation will come further into force in 2022, as crypto is definitely too big to ignore and regulators are starting to catch up to the industry. Overall, I’m cautiously optimistic about the sector and I am still long crypto.”