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The lightning network is a second layer payment protocol developed to work on top of the Bitcoin protocol. The lightning network is fundamentally designed as a solution for the Bitcoin scalability problem. Many experts believe that bitcoin fails to go mainstream due to its increased fees and delayed processing time.
Once implemented, the lightning network would allow rapid off-chain transactions at a minimum fee. This is possible by the use of off-chain payment channels where transactions are recorded to the blockchain at a later time.
Who Created Lightning Network?
The Lightning Network, first proposed by Thaddeus Dryja and Joseph Poon in a 2016 white paper. And In the month of December 2017, a series of interoperable test transactions performed on Bitcoin Core implementations.
The progress of development of the Lightning Network
The lightning network capacity developed over time at an impressive speed. Development of the network is traceable by the total of channels, nodes or the total capacity of the entire network. According to recent data on the performance of the lightning network, immense growth achieved in the last six months alone. The data revealed that since a month ago the network could handle 85.4 BTC. Currently, the lightning network handles 710 BTC a 90% increase in capacity.
Furthermore, the total number of open channels rose from 11.36 thousand channels to 32.34 thousand in the same period. According to another source, the lightning network experienced a 30% growth in network capacity. Additionally, there is a 36.2% increase in the number of channels. The average network fees on the platform are about 1 Satoshi.
Although the lightning network has not yet gone live officially, the technology achieved most of its milestones. It could be a matter of time for the network’s full implementation and a significant approval by the bitcoin community. There is much information about network progress all over the internet. Statistics on the development of the network can obtained from 1ml.com.
Application of the lightning network and its prospects as the future of payments
Tests on the lightning network began as early as 2018 by a company known as Coingate. Coingate initiated a trial pilot of the lightning network with over 100 merchants. The company handles blockchain and cryptocurrency payments since 2014. At the onset of the trial, Coingate offered to reimburse any losses arising due to network error. Surprisingly none of the anticipated errors actually occurred during the test time.
A recent publication on CoinGate website indicates that there are more than 41,000 new user registrations. Furthermore, the source revealed that more than 4,500 merchants are using the lightning network option. There are about 300,000 merchant payments through the gateway since January 2019. This figure is almost three times more than last year’s figures.
The lightning network could become the most influential upgrade of the Bitcoin network. However, the lightning network is officially still in the testing phase. The excitement about the lightning network within the Bitcoin community is risky for the network’s resilience. The excitement could cause the network to grow way too fast before it’s proven robustness is achieved by 100%.
More About Lightning Network & Its Current Achievements
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