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A fork in the road for Bitcoin leads to two separate currencies

02 August, 2017, 00:52 | Author: Samuel Sharp
  • Bitcoin is splitting into two currencies this week – sort of

You may have heard that Bitcoin is relatively anonymous since people are identified by cryptographic addresses, not their names.

The group behind Bitcoin Cash is of the opinion that the world's first cryptocurrency - Bitcoin - was not fulfilling its intended objective of being a mode of transaction and aims to have a currency where transactions will be settled in minutes at just a nominal fee.

Bitcoin Cash will operate along the same lines as the original bitcoin, complete with the same blockchain. Bitcoin is collectively valued at $47 billion, but remains a niche product.

This is significant because the new Bitcoin Cash is expected to be worth real money. Each platform is treating the new Bitcoin Cash differently. "It just sounds bad; we're not used to currencies that split into two".

He added: "Because millions of people are going to hold bitcoin cash, it is probably going to be around for some time".

Marc Van der Chijs, a Dutch serial entrepreneur and VC, believes that due to the ensuing confusion the combined price of bitcoin and bitcoin cash will fall below the current levels of about $2700 for a bitcoin.

Bitcoin was created by a pseudonymous coder (or coders) known as Satoshi Nakamoto, who released the software that powers the currency in 2009. The bitcoin blockchain is a public ledger containing all the transaction data from anyone who uses bitcoin.

This is a rather peculiar event for a digital currency to go through, although it is not unexpected. On July 23, enough bitcoin miners had pledged their support to the fix that it was locked in. The bitcoin network can only support around seven transactions per second, compared with thousands per second piped through conventional financial networks such as Visa. Totally, 13 exchanges and over 5,000 retail stores and restaurants across Japan may suspend bitcoin use. The majority of his work focuses on Bitcoin, blockchain, and financial technology.

A split in the Bitcoin community is set to create a new incompatible version of the cryptocurrency on Tuesday. But others will not. "Coinbase would not keep the bitcoin cash associated with customer bitcoin (BTC) balances for ourselves". The actual bitcoin cash coins do not exist yet, so we shouldn't extrapolate too much from the week that bitcoin cash futures were trading on ViaBTC. Ryan Taylor, chief executive officer of Dash Core, the sixth-biggest cryptocurrency, sees little chance that bitcoin cash will succeed in the long term. "The crucial part is the amount of economic interest in this new currency", says Sirer. The miners responsible for processing transactions and generating new Bitcoins ultimately decide which of the two coins to support. In my opinion, Segwit is a good way forward for Bitcoin.

Trading in bitcoin cash was still limited. It depends on whom you ask. Séchet argues he's fighting for the soul of bitcoin, and Bitcoin Cash will force the cryptocurrency community to take scalability more seriously, even if the project fails. So far, at press time, five blocks total have been mined on the Bitcoin Cash network. "Either is a win for bitcoin users".


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