Bitcoin appears to be maturing according to this article in Coindesk about a major new study by researchers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the central bank of Germany and University College London. The main conclusion of the study is that "the use of bitcoin for illegal transactions at the present time might be overstated". This will be seen as good news for all companies in the bitcoin space who have had to fight against the commonly held belief that bitcoin is only useful for illegal activities. The researchers break the growth of bitcoin into 3 phases... The early proof of concept days. The gambling and dark market phase (Silk Road etc.) The legitimate merchants and exchanges phase. According to the report we are now at phase 3.