Opinion: Bitcoin has 3 things going for it that practically assures it will remain the most relevant crypto. (Assuredly someone will bring up whether crypto itself can survive, but that is its own separate debate.) (tl;dr points in bold.)
Argument 1: Relevance begets relevance. For example, when the public wants to embrace crypto in mainstream fashion, grandma will ask you, “What is a bitcoin?” The first ETF(s) introduced are for bitcoin. The first state to accept crypto when taxes are due is set up for bitcoin first. Everyone (and their grandma) has heard of this argument, but I believe it to be way more potent than imagined. Hear me out.
Tech tends to snowball. And in the most brutal sense. You only use one search engine (unless you’re grandma). Does the average person even know of a direct Amazon competitor? Not even that long ago, only a single tech company (none if you go back further) made the S&P 500 top five. Fast forward to today and it’s all five of them (Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, Alphabet (Google), and Facebook). Oh, and these five dominate their area of expertise. Yeah, snowballing.
But wait! Facebook wasn’t the first, you cheekily think to yourself. That’s because you’re old, and you remember Myspace. Okay, fine. Tech is admittedly both the disruptor as well as the disrupted. But if a tech entity has staying power in the form of either (A) adapting to disruptions or (B) being disruption-resistant in the first place, then it will grow much like humanity, smothering the lifeforce of Earth (and soon the cosmos).
The next 2 arguments outline why I think bitcoin does have the above properties (A) and (B).
Argument 2: Bitcoin is a vampire. It sits back and just stares menacingly. Oh, this hard fork of mine has the virtue of being able to process transactions faster and cheaper? I’ll just steal that property. Boom, Lightning Network. Hey, this one seems to have something going for it in terms of privacy. Brb, working on it. That’s right. Bitcoin paid $7.99 and is now able to pick and choose at the buffet that is every other crypto. Taking its sweet time, bitcoin decides what is worthy of incorporating into itself, leaving behind only crypto-victims in its wake. The above Argument 1, which enables Argument 2, means bitcoin has the momentum, intellectual collaboration, value at stake and thus funding, institutional support, etc. behind it to afford it vampire-like capabilities.
Argument 3: Bitcoin is boring. The most counterintuitive argument of the lot. Bitcoin is stripped of any exciting features to begin with. It doesn’t have fancy computing or contracting features. There’s no Internet of Things or supply chain integration, no DApp platforms or Great Pyramids ownership structures. All these bells and whistles actually serve to make bitcoin stand out more. Bitcoin stands out because it’s stupidly boring, and the more the crypto space starts looking like the Las Vegas Strip, the more sex appeal boring gains. Even after 5,000+ years of civilization we still use gold as a store of value. Which is an element, folks. It literally can’t be more boring.
Adoption-wise, boring and hence understandable gets noted first. Which dovetails into Argument 1.
Boring is a luxury. Being almost featureless, bitcoin can wisely decide what is critically necessary for it to futureproof itself, incorporating only relevant features. The essence of Argument 2.
Disclaimer: Everything I said above is subject to going to shit, but I feel like stances are necessary.