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Bitcoin Heading For A Split Amid Disagreements Over Its Future

There are reports of a development that could have significant implications for the crypto currency community, Bitcoin is heading for a split with a new currency being formed called ‘Bitcoin Cash‘.

The move has been largely the result of a difference of opinion between internal groups regarding the future of bitcoin. The split is being led by a group of China-based bitcoin miners who are not in agreement with the planned changes to its technology which have been proposed to manage the rapidly increasing transaction volumes. Miners are the people who earn bitcoins for providing computing power to the bitcoin system.

Under the plan, the blockchain which is the underlying technology for bitcoin is being forked or split into two. If the plan succeeds, then it would result in creating an entirely new digital currency which would become a rival to bitcoin. Bitcoin is currently the most established of the digital currencies available today. The split will result in bitcoin owners getting an equal amount of Bitcoin Cash for free.


In a statement Jeff Garzik, chief executive and co-founder of Bloq, a blockchain company said

This is somewhat like a stock split. You go to sleep with 100 bitcoins and wake up in the morning with 100 bitcoins plus 100 'Bitcoin Cash', a new token

An earlier forking attempt was averted after another group of miners and the Bitcoin’s software developers agreed on a software upgrade called Bitcoin Improvement Proposal (BIP) 91.

BIP 91 is a part of a larger overhaul using a new software called SegWit2x which aims to increase the speed of processing payments. The recent surge in the currency popularity has seen bitcoin’s value go from around $997 in early 2017 to its current rate of $2,697. With the number of transactions growing by leaps and bounds, the currency is struggling due to existing limitations present in its payment processing.

Bitcoin currently allows just one megabyte of data to be added every 10 minutes to the blockchain, the decentralized asset ownership ledger. This restriction has caused large amount of delays and increased fees. Some digital currency exchanges such as Coinbase, BitMEX, and Bitstamp have said they will not be accepting the new 'Bitcoin Cash'.

Greg Dwyer, head of business development at BitMEX said that the company doesn’t want to support behavior which allows anyone to split the bitcoin blockchain and create free money. However not everyone share this view as other major exchanges such as Kraken and Bitfinex stated that they would accept Bitcoin Cash trading if the fork goes ahead.

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