Cryptocurrency is far from mainstream, but interest persists

Maeve Harris's avatar
Maeve Harris

With our first-ever Middle Eastern event wrapped up, check out some of GCB’s discoveries from its attendee survey on the event floor. 

One of the challenges affecting the financial sector is how emerging technologies – such as the introduction of non-traditional currencies – influence consumer behaviour.

At Web Summit Qatar, financial services platform GCB asked attendees for their opinions on digital currency and how it affects their day-to-day financial decisions.

Here are GCB’s findings:

Not everybody is comfortable with cryptocurrency

Although cryptocurrency initially emerged in 2009, it wasn’t until around 2017, when valuations were at an all-time high, that people began to value investment.

And while digital currencies have fascinated financial experts in recent years, there has been a noticeable dip in their popularity as of late.

This is evidenced by GCB’s recent survey of Web Summit Qatar 2024 attendees. 

Uncertainty clearly remains, with nearly a quarter of surveyees disregarding digital currencies as a valid option for financial practices in their daily lives. 

What’s surprising is the number of respondents – nearly one-third – who expressed a willingness to integrate the financial tokens into their daily lives, indicating that many Web Summit Qatar attendees remain interested in moving on from traditional financial habits.

One-stop financial shops are preferred to multiple interfaces

Financial accessibility is crucial to consumers, validated by the recent global upsurge in the use of contactless payments and digital wallets. 

More than half of the total surveyees remain loyal to a singular platform for all of their pecuniary needs, whether fiat or cryptocurrency, presumably due to the ease that singular financial interfaces afford users. 

Surveyors favour decentralised tokens 

As digital tokens become more popular, the concept of decentralised finance becomes more appealing. 

For many users, a decentralised structure affords a more secure, private and trustless environment wherein digital assets can exist beyond the control of traditional financial institutions.

When asked about investing in cryptocurrency, attendees expressed an overwhelming interest in decentralised rather than centralised tokens, by a ratio of four to one. 

Did you miss out on our inaugural Middle Eastern event? Get your ticket to Web Summit Qatar 2025 today to secure your spot.

Main image: Web Summit

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