April has come and gone and with it, we have another round of Bitcoin news. Here are some of this month's hot topics:
Lightning Network reaches 10,000 nodes
According to Bitcoin Visuals, the number of nodes on the Lightning Network has approximately doubled in size from a year ago. For those who are unaware, the Lightning Network is a second-tier layer routing technology on top of bitcoin which keeps the transactions off-chain. In an effort to speed up payment confirmation, various layered protocols have been introduced that use off-chain routed payment channels that still maintain the principles of the bitcoin system. There have been a few other payment protocols developed in addition to the Lightning Network, such as TumbleBit and Teechan, but the Lightning Network has gained the most adoption so far.
Lightning Network Statistics - Bitcoin Visuals (Bitcoin lightning network dashboard with charts and statistics on nodes, channels, capacity, distance measures, completeness measures, clustering measures, and connectivity measures.)
Kiyosaki's bullish prediction
In one of the most bullish Bitcoin price predictions since John McAfee, Robert Kiyosaki has predicted the price of bitcoin to surpass $1 million in 5 years.
On The Rich Dad Radio Show, Kiyosaki made some further revelations on bitcoin regarding why he thinks it important, here were some of the key points discussed by Kiyosaki:
- Bitcoin and blockchain technology have much more credibility than government-issued currency.
- Financial education is important, even if it's just learning Gresham's law and how it describes historic trends of fiat currency.
- The network effect gives bitcoin its advantage, no matter which country the funds are accessed in, it still maintains its value and quality.
- The downside of printing money is the poor get poorer because of hyperinflation.
- Always do your own research.
Child Pays For Parent
During the past month, the hashrate for bitcoin dropped which caused the mempool to be backlogged with more unconfirmed transactions than usual. This impacted the speed at which payments made on the bitcoin network could be processed by the miners, and as such, you may have found payments sent were not getting picked up for a few days.
When sending any amount of bitcoin, the transaction fee for the miners' reward may not be adequate given the high demand and slow throughput of the network at a particular point in time. It could also be that the transaction fee was too low irrespective of the network demand and mempool size. If a payment is relatively urgent then a Child Pays For Parent (CPFP) transaction may be a viable solution to get it confirmed quickly.
A CPFP transaction is one where a new transaction is chained to an existing and unconfirmed transaction containing 1 or more parent payments (which may also be unconfirmed). This new child transaction is created to resolve and push up the parent transaction(s) by attaching it with a higher fee, which will incentivize the miners to pick it up and verify all the unconfirmed parent transactions before it.
With the CPFP option in an Electrum wallet, the user can adjust the transaction fee amount. This pay-bumping technique is available to the Electrum wallet, with calculators available online to copy-paste the TXID of the pending transaction and calculate a fee so that the payment can be processed within a few blocks. After entering the new fee measured in sat/vB for the child transaction, you then sign the transaction and broadcast it. This also assumes that the parent's public address is one you control the keys to.
The volatile nature of bitcoin's price was felt throughout the month of April. As its price rose to record levels at the midpoint of the month, it was just as quickly followed by a fairly dramatic dip. This fluctuation in price is fairly common with bitcoin, which has been known to drop or rise quite quickly even over a 24 hour period. The market correction was attributed to a few reasons, namely the hash rate dropping, as well as murmurs from the various government(s) to introduce laws on crypto, which may have shaken cryptocurrency holdings out of weaker hands.
During the month of April, bitcoin hit approximately $64400 USD (approx 84000 AUD) on the back of the direct listing of Coinbase, which helped pump the price up. Whilst it now hovers around the $54000 USD (69000 AUD) mark, it is the third month in a row it has reached a new all-time high.
Clearly, the most bullish prediction we've seen thus far for bitcoin's price was referenced in an episode of The Simpsons (Episode 18, Season 32) that aired this month:
Well, that's all we've got for you this month, and we look forward to providing you with more Bitcoin news in May.