Web3 has been slow to gain traction outside of the crypto community. While there are many reasons for this, the primary one is that most people don't know how Web3 or cryptocurrency can be used in their everyday lives.
However, I am confident that Web3 has the potential to change the way we interact with the internet, just like TCP/IP protocols did when they were first introduced.
In this article, I wrote about the role real solutions can play in accelerating the adoption of Web3, as well some challenges that need to be addressed before Web3 can truly reach its potential.
If everyone understands Web3’s potential and how it can be used in the real world, we can help to make its adoption a reality.
How real-world use cases on the Web1.0 changed the world
Initially, people were sceptical about the potential of Web1.0. But over time, as more and more businesses started building tools and commercialising solutions around the internet, it witnessed massive adoption. It's the same way I think about the growth of Web3.
In addition, if you look at how the web and internet users grew from 1995 - 2005, you will see that there was a time when founders didn't think about scaling. They were not sure their solutions would be used by many people. But look where we are today.
Now, more than ever, we rely on the internet for our everyday activities, and most businesses globally benefit from the internet, one way or the other. For instance, Amazon sells books online without any physical bookshops, Uber offers rides to your destination without any cars. These companies have been able to capitalize on the internet to create new and convenient services.
My predictions of the growth and adoption of Web3
Between 1995 - 2005, the world hit about 1 billion internet users. That was when we saw the rise of internet giants like Facebook which served as proof that when people have access to the internet, they will find ways to connect and share information.
Today, we have 50 million active Ethereum addresses, with at least 0.01 ETH in them. This shows that there is a growing interest in the blockchain space and that people are looking for ways to use the technology to improve their lives.
If we follow that pattern, and if Web3 keeps growing at the current pace, we will have about 1 billion Ethereum addresses by 2031. This is according to the "State of Crypto" report released lately by venture capital firm, Andreessen Horowitz (a16z).
Hence, my prediction around web3 is that if we continue to build more crypto use cases and utilities outside trading, like lending, remittances, savings, and payments that directly impact the everyday lives of people, it will be adopted faster.
Some real-world applications of the Web3
If you observe the cryptocurrency solutions available today, especially in Africa where numerous cryptocurrency exchanges exist, it's clear that people mainly use crypto as a trading asset.
However, we need to start thinking of crypto as a way to solve real-world problems, not just something to trade with. This way, people will want to use USDT for example, for buying and selling, rather than just for investing.
Here's an example of how this can play out:
James wants to book a flight to Dubai as soon as possible. To do that, he needs to have USD on his card so that he can easily pay for the flight. However, he doesn't have USD on his card right now.
Thankfully, he remembers that he can easily pay with stable coins like USDT or USDC instead of waiting hours to process a traditional fiat currency. This way, paying for things via crypto becomes a part of James's daily, stress-free life. A few use cases where blockchain technology will easily come in handy have been highlighted in this article.
In a nutshell, before Web3 can truly reach its potential, we need to:
- Address the mindset that Web3 is meant for the crypto community alone
- Create more use cases for crypto outside trading
- Make it easy for people to use crypto for real-world transactions
- Provide merchant solutions that allow for the acceptance of cryptocurrency
Ultimately, everything that occurs in the real world is transactional; to go out and make purchases, you must first make payments. Making payments is therefore the main use of any financial system in the real world.
This is one of the reasons why @Lazerpay came into existence; we are passionate about driving the adoption of crypto in Africa and globally by starting at the foundation - accepting payments.
Web3 has the potential to change the way we interact with the internet and the world around us. However, for this to happen, mass adoption is necessary.
As established in this article, one of the key ways to achieve this is through real-world use cases, and not just relegating Web3 to the crypto community. By demonstrating how Web3 can be used in everyday situations, people will be more likely to adopt it globally. Of course, it will be a gradual growth process, one which we are here to witness.
What do you think the average African can do to increase blockchain adoption for themselves?
I look forward to reading your comments.. 🙌