Bitcoin found a surprising cheerleader in micro-blogging platform Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey last year–who has since begun steering his payments company Square towards crypto.
The bitcoin price has climbed some 200% so far in 2019 as some of the world’s biggest technology companies, led by the likes of Twitter and social media rival Facebook, have expressed interest in bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.
However, Dorsey has now warned that bitcoin “is not functional as a currency,” though still thinks bitcoin is preferable to something like Facebook’s planned libra digital currency.
“[Bitcoin is] not functional as a currency,” Dorsey warned the Australian Financial Review.
“The peaks and troughs are like an investment asset and are equivalent to gold. What we need to do is make it more usable and accessible as a currency, but it’s not there yet.”
Dorsey, who has been talking to Australian media outlets during a tour of the country to promote Square’s launch of new payment terminals there, added he is though still convinced bitcoin will eventually be adopted more widely.
“I think [bitcoin is] the best bet because it’s been the most resilient, it’s around for 10 years, it has a great brand and it’s been tested a bunch,” Dorsey said.
“As I look at all cryptocurrencies that could fill that role of being the native currency for the internet, [bitcoin is] a pretty high probability.”
Dorsey’s Square revealed last month it generated $125 million in bitcoin revenue in the second quarter of 2019.
“We love you, bitcoin,” Dorsey told investors at the time.
Meanwhile, Dorsey said he would not be supporting Twitter rival Facebook’s libra cryptocurrency, which Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg wants to launch some time next year, if he can get global regulators on board.
“Open internet standards serve every person better than ones controlled or started by companies,” Dorsey told the Sydney Morning Herald, adding Twitter has no plans for a similar dedicated digital token.
Facebook, which has recruited some 27 partners around the world including ride-hailing app Uber and payments giant MasterCard, is working to win over regulators and the traditional financial industry to launch its libra digital currency.
Facebook claims libra will lower costs and expand access to banking services in the developing world.