Bitcoin SegWit adoption soars after updates, reducing fees
SegWit adoption is soaring on the wings of bitcoin v0.16.
Bitcoin SegWit usage is jumping right now, almost certainly thanks entirely to the 0.16 update in which it was made the default and coded into the user interface, coupled with the adoption of SegWit by several major exchanges.
The SegWit (segregated witness) system is designed to improve transaction times and reduce transaction fees. It essentially works by packing data into each block on the blockchain in a more space-efficient way.
This increasing uptake might come as a relief to bitcoin fans who have been waiting to see the dial move since SegWit's first release. Now they can see it increase hour on hour.
This is a new high for SegWit adoption. Shortly after its introduction, it peaked between 15-20%, before settling into the 10-15% range. Now it's at around 25% with probably a fair bit of room for more uptake ahead of it.
The timing might be auspicious. Bitcoin transaction fees tend to grow along with its prices, and cryptocurrency is experiencing some fairly steady growth at the moment. While bitcoin transaction fees plummeted even before SegWit adoption, it wasn't completely clear why they were falling so low or whether the drop would continue if growing prices led to a resurgence of interest in bitcoin.
Wider SegWit use might buy it some more growing room.
This could prove very useful given bitcoin developers recently suggesting that the Lightning Network has an extremely long road ahead of it and is nowhere near ready for widespread use.
Disclosure: At the time of writing the author holds ETH, IOTA, ICX, VEN, XLM, SALT and BTC.