Six months ago we saw a lot of news about the willingness of many companies to implement the bitcoin payment system. However, with the accelerated development of the cryptocurrency ecosystem, things have changed dramatically.
Nowadays, we can see a lot of companies that either run away from bitcoin or accept it completely. Microsoft recently announced it would stop accepting bitcoin in three years.
One of the most popular video games platform, Steam, also removed the option to use bitcoin as a method of payment on the platform at the beginning of December last year. The company’s decision was adopted by consensus and the company said bitcoin payments were disabled due to high fees and incredible volatility of the most popular cryptocurrency in the world.
Even some companies from within the cryptocurrency sector are removing bitcoin as a method of payment. We wrote about the decision of the organizers of the North American Bitcoin Conference in Miami to stop accepting bitcoin as a method of payment for the last-minute tickets. The organizers said they decided to stop accepting bitcoin because their network was overloaded and the manual processing of the cryptocurrency transactions was also one of the reasons.
It seems possible to connect the Bitcoin’s change in categorization with the fail of the SegWit2x bifurcation, which subsequently led to the price of bitcoin rising and ending the year 13 times stronger than at the beginning of 2017.
Bitcoin has problems to define itself – is it a digital currency or digital gold? Many thought the SegWit2x bifurcation would decrease the commissions and enable faster verification of transactions in the network, but the function of bitcoin as a store of value would probably suffer in turn.
The interesting nature of the evolution of bitcoin means it could still become a very useful and sustainable currency if the community decides so. The newest change which should be implemented is called Lightning Network. The main objective of the new update is to improve the scalability of the Bitcoin network.
Lightning Network is supposed to implement smart contracts in the Bitcoin network and thus open private payment channels between one user (peer) and all the other users (peers) that are doing business with him. In addition to the private channels, every peer will have one open channel towards the Bitcoin blockchain network.