According to research by Diar, a firm specializing in cryptocurrency analytics, Facebook’s payment-focused coin will fail to gain traction based upon the demographics of the platform’s user base, CCN reports.
Diar’s research shows that less than half of Facebook’s users are under the age of 35, with the number of retirees (age 65+) having more than doubled since 2012. The Baby Boomers are the weakest demographic group in terms of interest in and investment in bitcoin. There is little reason to believe they will change their minds because of GlobalCoin and are even less likely to learn the intricacies involved in using cryptocurrency.
Diar argues that the barrier of forcing adoption on an aging user base will be hard for even Facebook to overcome:
“Educating 25% of the world’s population about current cryptocurrency infrastructure that requires private-key management and the glaring reminder of the possible ultimate loss of funds is also unlikely as it would result in the project’s near instant failure.”
Facebook also faces a challenge with younger uses. Pew Research has revealed that Facebook has lost its dominance with the teen generation compared with other channels: barely half of US teens use Facebook compared to 85% of teens participating on YouTube and they are more likely to be found on Snapchat or Instagram.
Pew also claims that Facebook is beginning to be skewed toward lower-income households; a fact that does not bode well for pushing a payment-based technology such as GlobalCoin:
“Lower-income teens are far more likely than those from higher-income households to say Facebook is the online platform they use most often.”
In the light of both these pieces of research it seems unlikely that Facebook will become the “bitcoin killer” it would like to be. Not only might it struggle to gain traction with Facebook’s 2.2 billion users; no crypto fans will use it because it is a centralized token, which is going against the decentralized nature of major cryptos.
CCN comments, “Next year’s release could fall flat for the Facebook coin and instead, provide validation for bitcoin and established cryptos.”