Survey: Quarter Of US Consumers Has Heard Of Bitcoin — And Majority Of Them Trust It

Natasha Lomas | TechCrunch | June 28, 2013

Depending on your view, Bitcoin is either A) an elaborate Ponzi scheme or B) the currency of the future. Or, if you’re the average man on the street, it’s probably C) something you’ve never heard of. Putting a bit of data behind attitudes to the emergent crypto currency that’s got VCs all excited is a new slice of research conducted by survey firm On Device in conjunction with the organisers of an upcoming London-based Bitcoin conference.

The firm surveyed more than 22,000 U.S. consumers in May 2013 to test Bitcoin awareness and levels of trust at this still relatively early stage in its development. Bitcoin went live on the web in 2009, but in currency terms that still makes it a bawling babe. Add in its distinguishing features — being the first decentralised digital currency — plus ongoing teething issues with infrastructure, and political and legal uncertainties, and nascent is the obvious moniker to describe it. Fragile as a house of cards might be another worthy descriptor. But everything has to start somewhere. And Bitcoin has weathered a fair few ups and downs already in its short history.

So what do U.S. consumers make of Bitcoin right now? Well, according to the survey, just over a quarter (25.3%) have heard of the crypto currency — which means the U.S. is lagging the other two countries also surveyed for the poll, Argentina and the U.K. [...]