Tim Cook Owns Crypto, But Apple Isn’t Looking Into Crypto Acceptance Just Yet

It has been a long year for the crypto industry, with different occurrences affecting coin performances and changing how we think about money. But, so far, adoption for digital assets has continued to rise.

Tim Cook Owns Crypto, But Apple Isn’t Looking Into Crypto Acceptance Just Yet

With market participants still looking for big names to get into crypto, things got especially interesting this month as Apple chief executive Tim Cook confirmed that he indeed owns Bitcoin.

Tim Loves Crypto, But Apple’s Unconvinced

Speaking at the New York Times Dealbook conference earlier in November, Cook confirmed that he does own some cryptocurrencies. The tech boss explained that he personally owns crypto as he tries to keep a diversified investment portfolio and that he believes digital assets to be fascinating.

In his explanation, Cook refrained from giving details about the exact coins he owns. However, the Silicon Valley CEO claimed that he had been interested in them for a while and had been doing more research on the topic.

Cook even dedicated some time to speak about non-fungible tokens (NFTs). He explained that they are also quite fascinating, pointing out that they have caught on quite well in 2021. However, he still believes that there is more work to do before NFTs gain the type of mainstream adoption that they need.

While Cook has confirmed that he opens cryptocurrencies, he pointed out that Apple remains unconvinced about whether to make any inroads into the industry. He explained that Apple doesn’t have plans to integrate cryptocurrencies into its ecosystem - a move that would allow customers to pay for some of its products (like phones and subscriptions) with digital assets.

As for whether Apple would invest in crypto like Tesla, Cook said that the company isn’t looking in that direction either. According to him, people don’t buy Apple’s stock to gain exposure to crypto.

“I would sort of characterize it as there are things I wouldn’t do — like our cash balance. I wouldn’t go invest that in crypto — not because I wouldn’t invest my own money in crypto — but because I don’t think people buy an Apple stock to get exposure to crypto. And so, if they want to do that, they can invest directly in crypto through other means,” Cook explained.

Regardless of Apple’s stance, Cook said that Apple is still looking to crypto to see how they could integrate coins into their operations. Apple is known for thinking outside the box, so it would be interesting to see what they come up with.

So far, Apple has been one of the few tech companies that have barely said anything about crypto. The most valuable company in the world, Apple has maintained an open policy - especially for crypto platforms launching on its App Store and other platforms. But, Apple remains closed to the idea of allowing crypto mining apps on the App Store.

Opportunities Abound Here

If the company is to adopt cryptocurrencies, it would most likely be for payments. Apple Pay is gaining steam in the digital payment scheme, and several of its top competitors are already established in the crypto payment space.

PayPal started crypto support last year and already allows its customers to trade using Bitcoin. Square’s Cash App is one of the most popular apps in the crypto space, with millions in transaction volumes. Even Stripe is getting into the crypto game as it recently announced the formation of a team to help it explore “the future of Web 3 payments.”

Regardless of what happens, Apple’s entrance into the crypto space will be massive. Earlier this year, Paul Steves, an analyst at Royal Bank of Canada Dominion Securities, explained in a report that Apple’s entrance into the crypto industry could create over $40 billion in annual revenues across the industry.

Stevens based his forecast on Bitcoin revenue history at Square - which reported over $1.6 billion in Bitcoin-related revenues in Q3 2020. With Square having just a fraction of Apple’s user base, Apple could see much more revenues from broader crypto adoption.

“If [Apple] decides to enter into the crypto exchange business, we think the firm could immediately gain market share and disrupt the industry,” Steves said. The analyst added that this move would also make the United States a leader in the crypto space for the next two decades at least.

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