When Will Koreans Start Using Bitcoin?

Bitcoin in Korea is exploding

Everyone is going crazy with Bitcoin after seeing Bitcoin explode in 2017.  The world is now trying to figure which cryptocurrency is going to function in the real world.  Right now blockchain is looking the most promising.  Koreans look to be going all in on the bitcoin market as the price of bitcoin is much higher in Korea and people are cashing in on the bitcoin albatross.

The reason why people are so fascinated with bitcoin is that it addresses a problem that normal currency can’t solve at the moment.  Bitcoin works in a space that is not controlled by banks or even the government, yet it is reliable.  You can exchange bitcoin for real money.  So in a way bitcoin is more functional than actual currency.

Cross-Border Money Transfers in Korea

Entrepreneurs and startup founders in Korea might have realized that doing business with startups or companies outside of Korea can be a huge headache.  Especially when it comes to financing.  Transferring money OUT of Korea is not as easy as one might think.  Many Korean startups decide to set up branches outside of Korea because it will cut through all the red tape associated with these cross-border money transactions.  The blockchain solves this problem.  As more and more Korea startups and more importantly the big companies in Korea start adopting blockchain.  The Korean consumer will follow.

Korea is all about innovation.

They want to be the leaders of Fintech not only in Asia but in the world.  There is already a strong bitcoin ecosystem in Korea already with Korbit but has also seen problems with security as faced by bitcoin company Yobit which had 17% of their bitcoin stolen by hackers.  This is the main reason it has not yet been adopted by the masses.  The benefits currently do not outweigh the risk.  Once bitcoin is widely considered a safe technology, the mass market will come on board.

Koreans, in general, do not like to gamble with their money, but they are also very receptive to new mobile technology.  So what will win out in the end?  The convenience of bitcoin or the dangers of hacking?  2018 will be the deciding year and if we continue to see these thefts and security breaches then blockchain might not be the answer but rather a NEW cryptocurrency will emerge that is far safer and more reliable.

John Yoon

John Yoon is the Editor in Chief at Startup Radar, Organizer for Startup Festival 2017, Head of Operations Korea at EOS Asia and the Global Marketing Director for Foresting.io. Email = john@startupradar.asia if you are interested in guest contributing and helping the Korean startup ecosystem. Wechat, Kakao, and Line user ID is jswy315

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