For the last few weeks, there have been speculations in media on whether Bitcoin is going to last much longer due to its price going downwards in the period of ten days, causing some extreme headlines to bubble up.
No matter how the media handled this price drop, it was no different than the ones in the past and its cause can easily be determined as the virtual tipping point in the debate over Bitcoin Scaling in its community. Two sides have been taken within the users, each advocating a different solution to enable faster processing speeds. Many speculations have been made in this time period by many.
But in May of this year, another solution has been offered by Barry Silbert and his Digital Currency Group which tried to provide a fair compromise for both sides, called SegWit2x.
The situation has been named the New York Agreement and it has been said that the solution known as Segregated Witness (SegWit) would be adopted, which will be followed by an increase of a block size of a Bitcoin to 2MB. 58 companies and 83 percent of the miners gave their agreeance to this solution by 25th of May. But because of the activation date set to 1st of August and people asking for a solution, this agreement wobbled and in the result, the price of Bitcoin dropped.
Last week, a new proposal has been issued by a Bitmain engineer called James Hilliard which gained a lot of followers. The proposal is known as the Bitcoin Improvement Proposal 91 (BIP 91).
What this proposal offers is an alternative route for using SegWit and the 2MB hard fork, planned for November of this year. It also offers a quicker way of using the original SegWit proposal but without the need to redeploy in case it doesn’t gain enough support by November.
The way miners can show their support for a proposal, they have to set a bit in the version field of the blocks they wish to mine. If they support the original proposal of SegWit (BIP 141), they signal using bit 1 and the SegWit2x can be supported by using bit 4.
Bit 91 uses the same process as BIP 141 but with a few tweaks.
The 80% threshold has been reached by the time of writing this article and it has been locked in. The 336 blocks have been mined and BIP 91 locked in.
It looks like the main concern of the investors and users, which is the possibility of a chain split, won’t happen as long as there are 51% of miners enforcing the required bit 1 signaling.
With BIP 91 providing a working solution for the crisis that has been going on, there has been more confidence for the investments and the market has shown a positive growth since the announcement.
From all of this, we are expecting Bitcoin to come out stronger and closer to reaching its full potential, and to confirm the beliefs of us who think of it as one of the most valuable innovations and investments of our time.