Bitcoin’s [BTC] Lightning Network capacity flares up to nearly 100 BTC 20708
Jessica Kuruthukulangara
Aug 9, 2018 at 9:36 PM

Bitcoin’s [BTC] Lightning Network is gaining traction, as the network has witnessed a 74 percent leap in its capacity in the last 30 days. The network, which boasts of supporting faster Bitcoin transactions, now has over 3,000 nodes that have the capacity to hold 96.52 BTC at the time of writing, data from 1 ML showed.

1 ML is a Lightning Network search and analysis engine. The website also showed that the number of channels on the network has surged close to 80 percent to reach 11,259 in the last 30 days.

According to Twitter commentator Kevin Rooke, the network’s capacity has shot up over 24 times in the last six months.

Why was the Lightning Network developed?

Bitcoin, the world’s most valuable cryptocurrency, sees a large volume of transactions daily. But this has led to slower transaction speed and high transactional fees, an issue that it has been battling for a while.

The Bitcoin Lightning Network was created to counter this very issue by providing a new scaling solution.

The network is a “second layer” payment procedure which has a system of smart contracts built on top of Bitcoin’ blockchain. This allows users to transact using Bitcoins faster with reduced transaction fees.

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The network is designed to move routine payments outside of the blockchain, clearing the most significant obstacle to Bitcoin's continued growth.

It also offers more privacy, as only the transacting parties on either end of the payment channel will have access to see the payments.

Recently, Litecoin's [LTC] founder Charlie Lee said that Litecoin would be the easiest to ramp on to the Lightning Network. "Open an LTC payment channel on chain cheaply and quickly, then atomically swap for BTC if/when you need to. This can be done in one step," he tweeted.

Is the Lightning Network living up to expectations?

But not everyone is too accepting of the network. Bitcoin Cash [BCH] advocate Roger Ver believes that the scaling issue on Bitcoin's blockchain didn’t exist and that the Lightning Network was developed for a problem that was intentionally created. He further added that the Bitcoin community created the problem in the first place.

At present, the Lightning Network faces the hurdle of not being ideal for sending large payments, according to Diar – a weekly institutional publication on digital assets and regulation.

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A recent Bitcoinist report stated that Lightning Network in its current state can only guarantee a 100 percent success rate for transactions that are no bigger than three cents.

The Lightning Network has been in development for several years and was launched in March of this year. It was a rough launch as a few users even experienced losses.

However, if the capacity continues to ramp up, the network will prove to be a more viable and preferred option for faster Bitcoin transactions.

Image via Shutterstock

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