And year after year it sets higher lows, and new highs.
Transactions go up, users go up, dollar value goes up. New technology like lightning gets developed, it gets cheaper/faster (https://bitcoinvisuals.com/lightning).
But hey, the price is down 50% this year, so we can call it a failure.
One use case is digital gold. Gold is a ~$12tr market. While gold is a nice conductor and looks good in jewelry, most of gold's value is attributed to store of value and hedge against inflation.
Bitcoin does what gold does, but better. It simply needs time to catch up, but yes, the use case is ironically buying Bitcoin and sitting on it to preserve monetary value from debasement.
Gold is also volatile, but not nearly as bad as cryptocurrencies. And since gold actually has uses, it exists at least some kind of backstop for its value. I expect Bitcoins value to eventually become zero.
So how is Bitcoin doing better what gold is doing?
- Bitcoin is cheaper to custodially secure than gold (no warehouses, security)
- Bitcoin is nearly impossible to counterfeit
- Bitcoin is cheaper to transfer (try flying gold to another country)
- Bitcoin travels magnitudes faster
- Bitcoin is more transparent, can prove its existence via proof of reserve.
These are the advantages of being digital. But only since the blockchain structure and decentralization have we ever had a provably scarce asset, it always previously depended on a trusted party.
And BitCoin also has a often unacknowledged effect of planetary centralisation making crypto mining on other planets in our solar system infeasible.
All value is human made. A painting is not worth $800m until someone decides to pay that much for it. Fiat dollars are only worth anything because we trust that other humans will take it from us in exchange for stuff we want. When we stop trusting this system, it ceases to have value. This happens for example in hyperinflation events where whole currencies die.
Watch this and tell me they're not about to run out of greater fools.