Skip to content
Swan logo
Log InGet Started
How Much of the World’s Population Owns Bitcoin Today?

How Much of the World’s Population Owns Bitcoin Today?

Posted 6/30/21 by Sam Callahan

 ~46 million American adults own Bitcoin today, and Bitcoin is currently at $35,000.

What happens when 3 billion adults globally own Bitcoin? 🚀

Read more to find out 👇

One of the biggest blindspots that investors have when they first come across Bitcoin is that they view it solely as an asset. Bitcoin is digital gold that you can send over the internet. Now to be clear if you think this you’re not wrong. However, what people miss is that Bitcoin is more than just digital gold. It’s also a revolu­tionary technology. 

Bitcoin is an open monetary network that allows for the free flow of value between individ­uals across the globe without having to ask permis­sion from anyone. The internet allowed for the free flow of infor­ma­tion, Bitcoin will allow for the free flow of value. 

Distin­guishing between Bitcoin the network, and bitcoin the asset is an impor­tant step to better under­standing how early you are in Bitcoin’s story. By viewing Bitcoin through the lens of a disrup­tive technology that will disrupt one of the largest markets in the world, money itself, you can then start to appre­ciate just how small Bitcoin is today compared to what it could become in the future. 

If you missed it, Bitcoin is that tiny red line in the bottom right corner there in the chart. The two main takeaways from the chart are:

 1.) How young Bitcoin as a technology still is

 2.) The similar pattern of how these technolo­gies get adopted. 

Technolo­gies like the internet, cell phones, TV, and cars get adopted gradu­ally than suddenly by society. Bitcoin will be no different. This makes sense when you stop and think about it.

Let’s use the example of email in the early ’90s. Back then, only a small percentage of the popula­tion was using it and could foresee its massive poten­tial. Even though email was a huge improve­ment on the tradi­tional mailing system, it still took time for the majority of society to under­stand it and utilize its benefits. Fast forward a decade later, and everyone uses email every day. 

Bitcoin is a drastic improve­ment on the money that we use today. It can be accessed by anyone, it’s scarce, it can be divided up into millions of pieces, and can essen­tially teleport anywhere, anytime, to anyone in the world. It is only a matter of time before better technology makes its way into the mainstream as the previous chart proves. Right now — Bitcoin is email in the early 1990s. In the future, everyone will use it every day.

Today it’s estimated that 100 million people own Bitcoin or ~1.3% of the world’s popula­tion. As such, we are very much still in the “Innova­tors” stage in the adoption cycle of Bitcoin as a technology.

An early Bitcoin investor, Wences Casares, made a keen obser­va­tion back in the day. Mainly he noticed that the amount of users of the Bitcoin network is directly propor­tional to the bitcoin price. In other words, the more users, the more valuable the network becomes, and the higher the bitcoin price goes. Wences observed that histor­i­cally Bitcoin’s price seems to closely follow the equation, (how many people own Bitcoin) x $7,000.

Now I don’t pretend to under­stand the calcu­la­tion behind this, but I do know that Wences’s equation remark­ably still holds true to this day. 

100 million bitcoin owners today x $7,000 / 21 million bitcoin = $33,333/bitcoin.

Crazy right!? 

So what does bitcoin’s price look like at 3 billion owners using the same equation?

3 billion bitcoin owners x $7000 / 21 million bitcoin = $1 million/bitcoin. 

You read that correctly.

So if Bitcoin continues to gain adoption at its current rate, and billions of people adopt it world­wide as a better form of money, then 1 bitcoin could possibly reach $1 million dollars per bitcoin or ~30x higher than today’s prices!

 You are so, so early. 

We’re Early, but it’s Growing Fast 

When we consider Bitcoin as a technology rather than an asset, there’s no doubt that the people buying bitcoin today will be consid­ered early adopters. However, the growth Bitcoin has achieved in just 12 years has been nothing short of breathtaking. 

The chart above displays how Bitcoin has achieved the same number of users in 11 years that it took the internet to acquire in 14 years. Bitcoin’s network is growing faster than the internet did. If we take that same growth rate and move it out into the future, Bitcoin will have roughly 1 billion users by 2025. 

If you’ve been following Bitcoin for the past several years, this growth rate shouldn’t surprise you. We’ve seen major adoption from public compa­nies like Micros­trategy and Square putting Bitcoin on their balance sheet, to large insti­tu­tions like insur­ance company MassMu­tual purchasing it, all the way to recently El Salvador adopting Bitcoin as legal tender.

Bitcoin’s network is growing quickly because it’s a break­through technology that will have radical impli­ca­tions for the world at large. It allows for the free flow of money between anyone, anytime, anywhere in the world without restric­tion. We are lucky to be alive to witness its ascen­sion as a technology, but it’s growing fast. 

You might want to pick some up today because at this pace, in just a few short years, Bitcoin could very well have billions of people using its network and as such, its price will likely be signif­i­cantly higher than it is today.

This blog offers thoughts and opinions on Bitcoin from the Swan Bitcoin team and friends. Swan Bitcoin is the easiest way to buy Bitcoin using your bank account automatically every week or month, starting with as little as $10. Sign up or learn more here.

Sam Callahan

Sam is writer, analyst, and educator focused on Bitcoin. His goal is to teach as many people as he can about Bitcoin in order to help them protect their wealth. He's passionate about freedom, privacy and also enjoys playing the guitar and hanging out with his dog, Louie.

More from Swan Signal

Thoughts on Bitcoin from the Swan team and friends.
Bitcoin: The Shipping Container of Money

Bitcoin: The Shipping Container of Money

By Dante Cook

What the history of shipping containers can teach us about Bitcoin.

Read More
Why Bitcoin Exists

Why Bitcoin Exists

By Tomer Strolight

Bitcoin was not created so that some people could “get rich quick.” It was created to preserve the integrity of money — to make the most of your precious time, your energy, and your life. 

Read More
Bitcoiners, It's Winning Time

We believe that a global, Nasdaq-listed, Bitcoin-only financial services company will play a key role in winning the race to avoid the war, so we’re building it.

Read More

Join our mailing list to receive new articles from the Swan Signal

Swan Bitcoin
© 2023 Swan Bitcoin

Electric Solidus, Inc.
26565 Agoura Rd Ste 200
Calabasas, CA USA
© 2023 Swan Bitcoin

Electric Solidus, Inc.
26565 Agoura Rd Ste 200
Calabasas, CA USA

Swan Bitcoin does not provide any investment, financial, tax, legal or other professional advice. We recommend that you consult with financial and tax advisors to understand the risks and consequences of buying, selling and holding Bitcoin.