"Bitcoin as a digital currency is not quite there yet," Jerry Yang, who now heads AME Cloud Ventures, told CNBC on Thursday.
"Personally, I am a believer in how digital currency can play a role in our society… but for now, it seems like it's more driven by the hype of investing and getting a return rather than using it as a transaction currency," he said, while speaking on the sidelines of the Fortune Global Forum in Guangzhou, China.
On Thursday, bitcoin accelerated past the psychologically key level of $15,000. The landmark happened on the Coinbase exchange at 10 a.m. London time (5 a.m. ET), trading as high as $15,200 on that platform.
The digital currency began the year below $1,000 but gains have skyrocketed in recent months as investor interest grows. Bitcoin's dramatic uptick in market value means it would currently rank among the 20 largest stocks in the S&P 500 — with an estimated value of more than $250 billion.