Aly Song | Reuters
Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Shanghai Mayor Ying Yong attend the opening ceremony of the Tesla Shanghai Gigafactory in Shanghai, China on January 7, 2019.
Elon Musk said his electric car business was avoiding cryptocurrencies.
Bitcoin gained widespread public awareness and a group of enthusiastic investors at the end of 2017, reaching almost $ 20,000. The price has fallen more than 80% since and is trading around $ 3,900 Tuesday, according to data from CoinDesk.
Musk highlighted Bitcoin's ability to bypass currency controls and replace paper versions. But he also pointed to weaknesses, including the energy involved in "mining". To create new bitcoins, people use very powerful computers to solve a complex mathematical problem. The winner receives a bitcoin.
"Paper money is disappearing and crypto is much better value for a transfer of value than bits of paper, but it has its advantages and disadvantages," said Musk. "Creating bitcoin requires a lot of energy at this stage."
Discussions between Musk and Tasha Keeney, an analyst at Wood and ARK Invest, focused on the future of Tesla in the areas of automation and electric vehicles. Musk said he expected the company would have the technology to operate unmanned vehicles by the end of the year.