Bitcoin (BTC) price, chart, coin profile and news in Australia

Find the latest Bitcoin (BTC) price, coin profile, news and history to get you started with Bitcoin trading and investing.

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What is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is the world's first cryptocurrency. It was invented on 31 October 2008, and formally launched on 3 January 2009 by an anonymous entity known as Satoshi Nakamoto. Since then, it has been on a trajectory of worldwide adoption.

The word Bitcoin can be used interchangeably to describe 3 things:

  • The digital currency, Bitcoin (BTC)
  • The Bitcoin blockchain
  • The Bitcoin network

Bitcoin (BTC) is Internet money that can be transferred to and from anyone with an Internet connection. Every transfer is a transaction, and each transaction is recorded in a database called the Bitcoin blockchain.

The Bitcoin blockchain contains a full record of every Bitcoin transaction that has ever taken place since 3 January 2009. The blockchain is replicated and continuously synchronised on every single computer that runs the Bitcoin network.

The Bitcoin network is made up of thousands of computers all over the world run by individuals, small businesses and large companies. Each computer that makes up the network is called a node.

Bitcoin has no CEO, headquarters, or official spokesperson. None of the computers that run the Bitcoin network are any more important than any other computer, giving Bitcoin an essential quality of robustness and egalitarianism. Since the network is run by thousands of computers globally, yet simultaneously governed by no-one, it is considered to be highly decentralised.

Bitcoin price chart:

Bitcoin at a glance

Ticker symbolBTC
UseDigital Asset
Year released2009
OriginSatoshi Nakamoto
Maximum supply21,000,000
Consensus algorithmProof of Work
Notable team membersSatoshi Nakamoto
Mineable?Yes

How does Bitcoin work?

Bitcoin is made possible by the underlying technology it is built upon – the blockchain.

As the name suggests, a blockchain is a series of blocks chained together. Each new block contains the latest set of transactional data. The blockchain is stored and synchronised across thousands of participant computers worldwide, otherwise known as "nodes".

When a user transfers Bitcoin (BTC) from their address to a recipient's address, that transaction is sent to the Bitcoin network to be processed. The transactions are grouped into blocks and added to the blockchain when a block has been "mined". Once a block has been mined, it is permanently added to the blockchain. Both the block and the transactions within the block cannot be changed once the block has been added to the rest of the chain. A new block of transactions is created roughly every 10 minutes.

What are Bitcoin block rewards?

The Bitcoin network offers computers an incentive to contribute their computational power to the network. Any computer may join, but the stronger the computer, the more likely that the computer will mine a block and earn a block reward. Bitcoin block rewards are paid out in Bitcoin, and are a predetermined amount of new Bitcoin not yet released into circulation, in addition to all of the fees paid on the transactions included in the block that was just mined.

What are Bitcoin halvening events?

Halvening events are a permanent reduction in the Bitcoin block reward. These halvening events take place every 210,000 blocks, or roughly every 4 years. When a halvening takes place, the block reward is reduced by half. When the Bitcoin blockchain began in 2009, the reward was 50 Bitcoin per block. Then 210,000 blocks later in 2012, the reward was reduced to 25. In total, there have been 3 halvenings in history – the last 2 taking place in 2016 and 2020. The current reward for mining a block is 6.25 Bitcoin.

Why is there only 21 million Bitcoin?

The fact there is only 21 million Bitcoin is a side effect of this halvening cycle described above. Because a Bitcoin can be divided into 100 million pieces (called Satoshis), there will come a day wherein the block reward is smaller than the smallest unit of Bitcoin. At this point and time, there will be no more Bitcoin added to circulation, and the total circulating supply will be 21 million Bitcoin. This event will take place somewhere around the year 2140. At this point in time, the miners in the network will be earning rewards solely from transaction fees.

History of Bitcoin

Bitcoin has been active for 13 years. During this time, many events have transpired that have led to Bitcoin becoming the largest cryptocurrency in the world. This is both in user base and market capitalisation. Understanding the history of Bitcoin is a great way to understand the technology as a whole, and where it is headed in the future.

The launch of the Bitcoin whitepaper

31 October 2008: This is the day that an anonymous entity named Satoshi Nakamoto published the Bitcoin whitepaper to a mailing list consisting of mathematicians and cryptographers.

3 January 2009: Satoshi releases version 0.1 of Bitcoin and begins mining the blockchain. The initial block is inscribed with a message from a UK newspaper: "The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks." This message sits in the genesis block (block #0) of the blockchain and is permanently inscribed for all future generations to see. This gives the public a loose view into the intentions of Satoshi Nakamoto to provide a decentralised "peer-to-peer cash system" that rivals the currencies of the world.

22 May 2010: This day is known as "Bitcoin Pizza Day" and is recognised as the first day that Bitcoin gained validity as a medium of exchange – two individuals (Laszlo Hanyecz, and Jeremy Sturdivant) met on a forum to purchase 2 large Papa John's pizzas worth USD$30 for 10,000 Bitcoin. Laszlo ordered the pizzas, and Jeremy paid for them in USD. In return, Laszlo transferred Jeremy 10,000 Bitcoin, giving each Bitcoin a value of $0.003.

23 April 2011: Known in the Bitcoin community as "Satoshi Disappear Day", this is the day wherein Satoshi Nakamoto left the world stage as the lead developer behind Bitcoin. Their last message reads, "I've moved on to other things", referring to the Bitcoin project. The future of Bitcoin, he wrote, was "in good hands". Since then, Bitcoin has largely been a multinational, leaderless, open source project.

28 November 2012: The first halvening event occurs, reducing the Bitcoin block reward to 25 Bitcoin, from 50.

9 July 2016: The second halvening event occurs, reducing the Bitcoin block reward to 12.5 Bitcoin from 25.

10 May 2017: The first lightning transaction took place (albeit not on Bitcoin, but instead on Litecoin). The Lightning Network was devised in 2015 as a scaling solution for Bitcoin to be able to process hundreds of thousands, if not millions of transactions per second. After 2 years of development, the concept was tested on Litecoin proving the merits of the scaling solution.

1 August 2017: Bitcoin receives an upgrade called Segregated Witness (SegWit) that increases Bitcoin's transaction throughput. The same day, the first Bitcoin fork occurs, creating a second Bitcoin blockchain dubbed "Bitcoin Cash" (BCH). After this date, the "main" version of Bitcoin is dubbed as "Bitcoin Core" with the ticker BTC. After this fork, several more took place in the following years as more people piled into the conversation of what the "one true Bitcoin network" should look like. Some of these networks include Bitcoin Satoshi Vision (BSV), and Bitcoin Gold (BTG).

11 May 2020: The third halvening event occurs, reducing the Bitcoin block reward to 6.25 Bitcoin from 12.5.

7 September 2021: El Salvador becomes the first country in the world to make Bitcoin legal tender. President Nayib Bukele "airdrops" $30 worth of Bitcoin into the Bitcoin wallet of each citizen. The "Chivo Wallet" becomes the official, government endorsed Bitcoin wallet which uses the lightning network to make Bitcoin transactions. El Salvador begins mining Bitcoin using geothermal energy from a volcano.

13 November 2021: Bitcoin receives its first major update since the SegWit upgrade in 2017. Taproot is said to increase the privacy, scalability, and ability to host smart contract-like functionality on the Bitcoin blockchain.

Bitcoin adoption in Australia

Bitcoin (BTC) ownership is slightly down in 2022, with the percentage of Australians saying they own BTC going from 17% in January to 14% in March 2022.

However, despite this dip Bitcoin remains the cryptocurrency of choice among Aussie owners, with the percentage of crypto owners holding Bitcoin hovering around 70% since November 2021.

In fact, since November BTC has slightly increased its dominance in Australia, widening the gap between its next closest competitor: Ethereum (ETH).

Bitcoin FAQ

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8 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    RachelleAugust 2, 2021

    Can client use part payment with BitCoin on property purchase and sale to avoid stamp duty?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      SarahAugust 5, 2021Staff

      Hi Rachelle,

      Stamp Duty is payable regardless of the method of payment. Whether it’s using cash funds, a home loan, or perhaps even using Bitcoin, stamp duty is charged based on the value of the property at the time of the purchase.

      There are some unique circumstances when you can avoid paying stamp duty, such as transferring the title from one spouse to another. You can check our guide stamp duty exemptions guide which can help you understand some of the fees and charges in each state or territory: https://www.finder.com.au/home-loans/stamp-duty-calculator

      Cheers,
      Sarah

  2. Default Gravatar
    SydJanuary 24, 2018

    How can I withdraw some money from Bitcoin

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JoanneJanuary 26, 2018Staff

      Hi Syd,

      Thanks for reaching out.

      I’m afraid bitcoins can not be withdrawn into a bank account directly. You can either sell them to somebody who then transfers the money to your bank account, or you can sell them at an exchange and withdraw the funds from there.

      You may refer to our guide on how to sell bitcoin. You can use our comparison table to help you find the platform that suits you. When you are ready, you may then click on the “Go to site” button and you will be redirected to their website where you can sign up or get in touch with their representatives for further inquiries you may have.

      As a friendly reminder, cryptocurrencies are speculative, complex, and involve significant risks – they are highly volatile and sensitive to secondary activity. Performance is unpredictable and past performance is no guarantee of future performance. Consider your own circumstances, and obtain your own advice, before you make any decisions.

      Cheers,
      Joanne

  3. Default Gravatar
    LizNovember 25, 2017

    How can you become qualified or learn to trade bitcoin?

    • Default Gravatar
      LiezlNovember 27, 2017

      Hi Liz,

      Thanks for reaching out to Finder.

      Anyone can actually trade bitcoins and other digital currencies, however, without sufficient understanding of how these work could cost you real money. Reading cryptocurrency comprehensive guides, watching tutorial videos from trading sites, and reading forums can be very helpful in making informed decisions.

      More than that, the experience is still the best teacher. Once you’ll make your first purchase, more learnings will follow. You’ll soon find out that trading cryptocurrencies can be easier and riskier than you think.

      Happy trading!

  4. Default Gravatar
    Jo-AnneOctober 30, 2017

    If I invest in Bitcoin does it actually represent real Australian dollars that I can withdraw from my normal bank account?

    • Default Gravatar
      LiezlNovember 2, 2017

      Hi Jo-anne,

      Thanks for your question.

      In order to withdraw your bitcoin, you have to convert it into cash. You would have to look for a bitcoin exchange that will allow you to sell your bitcoin at a reasonable price. You can then withdraw the cash proceeds from your bank account once you have it linked to a digital wallet. Kindly note that you need to set up a bitcoin wallet in order to buy and sell bitcoins. Moreover, bitcoin’s value is volatile hence, the current value of your bitcoin can be higher or lower than your original investment. We have a guide that might help you understand the basics of cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.

      I hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Liezl

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