This is an editorial opinion of Peter Conley, a product advocate at Vercel and a Bitcoin Magazine contributor.
How big can it be? Bitcoin jobs, infrastructure and opportunities are there as a whole? Not “cryptocurrency” in general – just Bitcoin.
Bitcoin network is growing in same speed like the internet.
We are well aware of the scale of the “monetary value” that this network holds. As of writing, bitcoin has a global market capitalization about $445 billion. What about the size of the “job value” it can create?
In 1999, the title of iOS engineer did not exist. If you do a basic search on LinkedIn, you’ll see over 33,000 open roles with just that title. It’s a open job position, not the number of people employed in that position. In 2002, the job of a React front end developer didn’t exist. On LinkedIn you will find more than 47,000 open roles at the time of writing. Same with “AWS Engineer” – didn’t exist in 2004. Now? 203,000 job opportunities. Where will I go with this?
A similar trend is occurring in the Bitcoin space. In 2013, bitcoin mining and wallets communication focal point, Lightning Infrastructure Engineer and positions that manage bitcoin mining operations do not exist. Not one. There are now dozens, if not hundreds, of slot types available.
What will these opportunities look like in 2038? Does a LinkedIn search (or equivalent) for “Lightning Engineer” return 10,000+ results?
Breaking Bitcoin Segments and Bitcoin’s Potential Career Paths
Let’s explore Bitcoin’s current sub-sectors for current and future opportunities:
We are still early. If Bitcoin is the internet, it was 1997. People will crave useful educational content to understand the importance of bitcoin and how to buy, trade, store and transact with it.
Remember the 1990s, when people tried to explain to you the importance of the Internet? Remember when the main news anchored don’t know what email is? Remember when? Dave Letterman laughs in the face of Bill Gates when he tried to explain the importance of the Internet?
We’re in the exact same place on the timeline if you map Bitcoin to the internet – same story, in fact. Because of this, the market will need great communicators to inform the public about the importance of bitcoin.
Bitcoin Mining Work
Examples of miners are Cathedra, Marathon and Compass Mining. Currently, the bitcoin mining sector has the most public companies and the largest measurable market capitalization compared to other types of Bitcoin companies.
Bitcoin mining is potentially the largest segment, both in terms of market capitalization and number of employees, simply because bitcoin mining requires a large amount of physical infrastructure and capital costs.
Bitcoin Engineering Jobs
Inventions that we could not have foreseen will be made on the Bitcoin protocol. Would the engineers at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency ever have the ability to predict e-commerce or online dating when they first invented the internet? Did Alan Turing ever have the ability to predict smartphones after he created the world’s first computer? Now, let’s see how many innovations build on those core breakthroughs.
I don’t think in 2009, Satoshi Nakamoto ever mentioned concepts like seed phrases, multi-signature wallets, and Lightning Network, but here we are.
The opportunities are endless here. If you can dream it and code it, you can make it a reality.
Bitcoin Mining Pool
In addition to bitcoin miners, there are also completely separate “mining pool” companies, like Foundry. This could be an entire subdivision in and of itself. Mining pools are similar to financial services firms and efficient processing companies for miners. Mining pools remove the risk of variable rewards from mining and allow more participants in the network to have a steady stream of metrics.
Bitcoin exchange job
The need to convert USD to BTC will always exist until the fiat currencies completely collapse. That’s where bitcoin exchanges come in.
The exchanges were some of the first – and now the richest – bitcoin companies. Examples include Kraken (started in 2011) and Coinbase (started in 2012). Most of them have revolved around the general crypto offering, but there are exceptions: Swan Bitcoin is a bitcoin-only exchange. Expect this space to expand as more altcoins like Terra/LUNA start to work.
Bitcoin Software Wallet Jobs
The extent to which bitcoin wallets will be embedded in nearly every user interface (both physical and digital) will be remarkable. These will be as common as email addresses or credit card submission forms. Every machine and website that accepts cash, credit cards, bank transfers and PayPal will be supplemented – if not completely replaced – with a bitcoin wallet.
You will also need a variety of wallets. One is a checking account (hot wallet) and the other is a savings account (cold storage). There will be a need to implement these wallets into existing businesses and there will be a need for training on how to transact with the Lightning Network, how to manage hot and cold wallets, and how to calculate tax events. .
Custodians help users keep backup keys for multi-signature wallets. They even have services that specialize in this service for organizations, not just individuals. Two of the biggest players in this space are Casa and Unchained Capital.
Bitcoin hardware wallet
You may have heard of Ledger and Trezor hardware wallets, but have you heard of ColdCard? ColdCard specializes in making hardware wallets using only bitcoin.
Expect the hardware wallet space for more creations and inventions. We are just getting started on cold storage approaches.
Bitcoin Button Maker
Bitcoin nodes are dedicated hard drives that store a ledger of all bitcoin transactions dating back to the first block in January 2009. There are a number of companies that manufacture and sell these dedicated mini servers. Some include Nodl, RoninDojo, and The Bitcoin Machine.
As bitcoin’s market cap increases, more people will join the game, leading to more people wanting to decentralize and secure the network.
Bitcoin physical products
The sky is the limit for bitcoin physical products. Opendime is a great example.
Other examples include Coinkite’s BLOCKCLOCK. Then there are steel-based devices for backing up keys like Codl’s Punchplate or CypherSafe’s CypherWheel.
Bitcoin “Bridge” Service
Professional services are not going away, they will just move to the bitcoin standard. People will still need direct help to transition to the financial system like bitcoin cold storage advice.
New paths are new business opportunities. A great example would be the mortgage market. Are you rich in bitcoin but poor in fiat assets and trying for collateral? Look no further than Hoseki, an emerging technology to prove your assets without giving up custody.
As the new need becomes apparent, more and more business solutions and full-time employment opportunities will emerge to help others join the Bitcoin network.
This is a post by Peter Conley. The opinions expressed are entirely their own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of BTC Inc. or Bitcoin Magazine.