Steve Wozniak, the engineer who started Apple Inc. (AAPL) with Steve Jobs in 1976, has warned that the hype over blockchain technology may be far ahead of itself in comparison to the real potential of digital currencies in the shorter term, as reported by CNBC. (See also: Apple Co-Founder Wozniak: 'I Do Not Invest'.)
At the NEX technology conference in New York on Tuesday, Wozniak indicated that while the underlying technology that powers cryptocurrencies like bitcoin has real implementation potential due to its decentralized nature and the fact that it's "totally trustworthy," many promises being made by blockchain companies are far-reaching and similar to overly ambitious tech companies that overheated in the dot-com bust in the late '90s.
“If you look now you say all that internet stuff happened, we got it, it just took a while,” said Wozniak. “It doesn't change in a day [but] a lot of the blockchain ideas that are really good, by coming out early, they can burn themselves out by not being prepared to be stable in the long run.”
Big Companies Who Back Blockchain
While blockchain was first used for digital currency, recording transactions on a distributed ledger without the need for a third party, its use has been applied across industries. Major firms such as Facebook Inc. (FB), Walmart Inc. (WMT) and International Business Machines Corp. (IBM) have invested in research and started projects to develop blockchain solutions.
Earlier this month, Wozniak commented on remarks from Twitter Inc. (TWTR) and Square Inc. (SQ) dual founder and CEO Jack Dorsey, who forecast that bitcoin will become the single global currency. "I buy into what Jack Dorsey says, not that I necessarily believe it's going to happen but because I want it to be that way, that is so pure thinking," stated the Apple co-founder.
Wozniak sold all but one bitcoin in 2017 when the digital currency skyrocketed to nearly $20,000 in mid-December, he told the technology conference participants. (See also: Steve Wozniak: Bitcoin Scammer Stole My Cryptocurrency.)