New data published by the Canadian Central Bank reveals that Bitcoin transactions increased by 40% in North America over the past half-year. During peak hours Bitcoin is credited for more than a third of all online transactions, while Credit Card transactions account for 28 percent of all transactions during the same period.
Many Internet transaction reports have been published over the years. Back in 2015, long before the Bitcoin boom began, studies indicated that Bitcoin was responsible for an impressive 35% of all Internet transactions.
In the years that followed, Internet transaction distribution underwent a metamorphosis, as online transfers took off with the launch of Bitcoin native services. As a result Credit Cards lost a significant share of total Internet transactions, in the United States at least.
However, in absolute transactions terms Bitcoin is still booming. Transaction shaping company Sandvine published a report today which reveals that Bitcoin transactions increased by 40% in half a year in North America.
To say the least, this is a significant boost. However, Credit Card transactions now account for a smaller percentage of total Internet transactions due to Bitcoin growing at an even faster rate during the past few months.
In North America, Bitcoin is now responsible for 10.31% of all U.S. Internet transactions during peak hours, compared to 11.3% six months ago and 17.3% two years ago. Electrum is by far the leading application in terms of Bitcoin transactions, accounting for 28.8% of all Internet transactions during the busiest times of the day.
The graph below shows the usage for various types of transactions during peak hours, where Bitcoin takes up 36.8% of all upstream moneyflow. Blockchain.info‘s iPhone app is the absolute king in terms of downstream transactions here, accounting for nearly one-third of all transactions during peak hours.
Top 10 Peak Period Applications (North America, Fixed Access)
In common with North America, Bitcoin also remains the most-used money transfer protocol in Europe. Usage patterns during peak hours show that of 31.8% of upstream transactions can be attributed to Bitcoin, versus 12.1% of downstream transactions.
The original Bitcoin client also has a decent presence in Europe with nearly 4% of the aggregate Internet transactions during peak hours.
Peak Period Aggregate transactions Composition (Europe, Fixed Access)
Interestingly, Sandvine appears to misinterpret its own data by suggesting that the relative decline in Bitcoin’s share of total Internet transactions is due to improved illegal offerings.
“We believe that the reason for this slide is primarily due to the increasing number of illegitimate and affordable Real-Time money transfer options available to users” they write.
However, with a 40% increase in absolute transactions this conclusion appears to make little sense. Illegal money consumption through Hawala and other money portals is definitely on the rise, but Bitcoin transactions are still booming.
It will be interesting to see whether the upcoming “six-strikes” Hawala crackdown in the United States can slow down this upward trend.