The Bitcoin network has shown its resilience and stability as the total computer power dedicated to protecting the blockchain has hit an all-time high. The hash rate, a measure of the computational power involved in processing Bitcoin transactions, has soared to 439 exahashes per second (EH/s) as more miners come online.
Despite fluctuations in BTC’s price, the increase in hash rate reflects growing investments in the mining industry. This growth has come from more territories and regions around the world mining Bitcoin, using increasingly renewable energy sources, which allay fears of centralization or environmental impacts that have previously shrouded Bitcoin mining.
However, Denver Bitcoin, a well-known Bitcoin miner with Upstream Data, cautioned that the hash rate increase could be fleeting. “Watch 1500-block to 5k-block avg time to understand true hash rate,” he tweeted.
Sometimes 20-100 blocks get found in quick succession, “current hashrate” readout on websites will show crazy number like 450Eh/s.
Always watch 1500-block to 5k-block avg time to get an understanding of true hashrate.
All based on blocktimes there’s no query of “total hashrate.” pic.twitter.com/ijgNsrwzIX
— 🏔Adam O🏔 (@denverbitcoin) May 2, 2023
One factor contributing to the surge in hash rate is the increasing popularity of Bitcoin ordinal inscriptions. Unique, non-fungible tokens built on the Bitcoin network represent a distinct position in the blockchain. These tokens have gained traction among collectors, investors, and enthusiasts.
Each inscription counts as a transaction, leading to a significant increase in daily transactions on the network, which exceeded 682,000 on May 1. As more people buy, trade, and swap Bitcoin Ordinals, the mempool, or “waiting area” for incoming transactions before they are processed, is becoming busier.
The lowest transaction price is 8 satoshis per byte, or around $0.30. It is significantly more than the previous low of 1 satoshi per byte. Due to the increased number of Ordinal inscriptions, users’ costs for sending money to wallets on the BTC base chain are significantly higher than usual.
Bitcoin Ordinals: A New Way to Engage with the Bitcoin Ecosystem?
For some, Bitcoin Ordinals provide the network with a purpose other than that of a store of money and medium of trade. Because of the inscriptions, altcoin supporters are connecting with BTC for the first time. On May 1, the number of inscriptions in a 24-hour period surpassed 350,000. Additionally, the overall number of Ordinals surpassed 3 million.
However, not everyone is convinced of their value. Adam Back, a BTC expert, believes that Ordinals are useless. Despite this, the increasing adoption of Ordinals demonstrates the versatility of the BTC network and its potential for future development.
In conclusion, the Bitcoin network demonstrates its strength and stability with the increasing hash rate and transaction volume. While some concerns remain, such as the environmental impact of mining, the growth of renewable energy sources and the increasing adoption of Ordinals suggest that the future of BTC remains bright.