Bitcoin Exceeds PayPal Transaction Volumes

According to a recent report, transactions on the world’s largest digital currency have exceeded those on global payment facilitator PayPal by 62%.

Within the last decade, Bitcoin has been met with relative success in terms of mainstream adoption, and its PayPal “toppling” is another reminder of that. However, the bigger challenge for Bitcoin lies in surpassing companies like MasterCard and Visa, two of the largest payment networks in the world.

BTC To Face-off With MasterCard Or Visa?

To date this year, Bitcoin has processed transactions valued at about $489 billion each quarter, compared to PayPal’s $302 billion. It's a rather impressive value. However, both figures fall substantially short of MasterCard’s $1.8 trillion and Visa’s weightier $3.2 trillion quarterly.

Beyond the simple figures though there are other factors to consider as the Blockdata report points out,

“It’s impressive how Bitcoin as a 12-year-old decentralized network, is %27 of the way in terms of 1 metric (volume processed) compared to MasterCard, a company founded in 1996.”

Another noteworthy point is the varying applications or use areas of both networks. Bitcoin’s system primarily promotes saving while the technology behind MasterCard and Visa is geared towards spending.

Factors That Could Change The Game For Bitcoin

The report took care to outline a few things which could help Bitcoin match the processing level of either payment company.

The first was the estimated number of Bitcoins transferred with each transaction. However, to have a transaction volume equal to MasterCard’s daily average the virtual currency would have to climb 260%, and to match Visa’s it would have to hit %560.

The report also explained the role of the price of Bitcoin. Within the past year, Bitcoin’s soaring values have not aided an increase in the number of coins being sent back and forth, instead, it has led to a notable decrease.

While the price could encourage expansion, the network would also have to accommodate an identical percentage of growth. At the moment it cannot be determined if BTC will scale price points like $245k and $435k, however, looking at its growth rate over the course of this year it is not too much of a stretch to say that will occur by 2026.

The most important factor noted in the report is the number of transactions that go through the Bitcoin ecosystem. About 280k transactions were processed by BTC’s base layer every day this year, that is about 25 million transactions per quarter.

In comparison, about 33 billion transactions passed through MasterCard every three months in 2021, 336 million daily. Visa had similarly large numbers with 53.7 billion each quarter or 597 million every day.

The obvious division is largely caused by the scalability issues the Bitcoin blockchain has to deal with and the Layer 2 solutions are intended to handle. Only a few months after its launch the Lightning Network has been massively adopted because transactions take place off-chain.

With about 663k transactions in just September, reports suggest that by 2030 the network will have over 800 million users.

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