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Cryptocurrency strengthens its roots in mainstream payments with Bitcoin Cash [BCH]

Aman Swami



Cryptocurrency strengthens its roots in mainstream payments with Bitcoin Cash [BCH]
Source: PxHere

The number of stores which have started accepting Bitcoin Cash [BCH] and a few other cryptocurrencies has increased in the recent times. Five vendors recently started accepting the digital currency, Bitcoin Cash, including a brand new cafe-bar dedicated to 15 cryptocurrencies.

The first on the list is Coins Crypto Cafebar – it is a new cafe-bar inspired by cryptocurrencies and is gearing up to open in Osaka, Japan. Coins cryptocurrency cafe and bar announced earlier this week that its grand opening is scheduled on May 12th. There will also be pre-opening events prior to that date.

The company described the cafe-bar saying:

“The cafe-bar has 23 seats, giving it a spacious feel, it is a place where many people can talk face to face. We have a large selection of foods and original goods based on 15 kinds of cryptocurrencies, and all of the staff have names of virtual currencies”

In addition to fiat and credit cards, the cafe-bar currently listed the following payment options on its website: Bitcoin [BTC], Bitcoin Cash [BCH], Ethereum [ETH], Monacoin [MONA], Lisk [LSK], NEM [XEM] and Litecoin [LTC].

The second company that has started using cryptocurrency as a mode of payment is Safecast. It is an international, volunteer-centered organization devoted to open citizen science for the environment. On Safecast’s website, there are links to products, such as the Safecast environmental monitoring devices including the bGeigie Nano Geiger Counter Kit and the Safecast air quality monitoring kit, that is hosted on Kithub’s website. Kithub accepts BCH and BTC through Bitpay.

An online clothing company has also joined the list – Undertech sells concealed-carry clothing such as shirts, shorts, jackets, vests, legging, purses, holsters, safes, belly bands, and other concealment items. The company recently integrated Coinbase Commerce as a checkout option on the Undertech Undercover website, allowing customers to pay with BCH, BTC, ETH, and LTC.

Goldsilver is yet another company that allows its users to pay in cryptocurrency. It is a website that sells precious metals, founded by Mike Maloney, a precious metals advisor, and author. The site sells gold bars, gold coins, gold jewelry, silver bars, and silver coins. The company recently started accepting BCH and BTC via Bitpay. The company also provides a 3% discount on purchases done using Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash.

Goldsilver is not alone, a Japanese jewelry site Rebecca Z, which sells everyday jewelry for working women, is also now accepting BCH and BTC via Bitpay.

The company said:

“We decided to introduce bitcoin payments to simplify payment procedures, this method will allow us to cope with the need to exchange different currencies on e-commerce sites.”

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Aman Swami is an Economics major from Christ University. He is very passionate about cryptocurrency and understanding of financial markets.

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BSV STN is mining 1.4-gigabyte blocks; Is this a scaling solution or a journey towards centralization?




Source: Unsplash

Bitcoin SV, the fork of Bitcoin Cash, has set up an STN [Scaling Test Network], specifically intended to test on-chain scaling for large blocks, which also acts as a standard network in the latest update of Bitcoin SV. It was noted that the STN was mining blocks that were more than 1 GB in block size, a development that was celebrated in the BSV camp after a Twitter user, @two2wheel2life, tweeted,

BSV has a total of four such networks defined, i.e., Mainnet, testnet, regtest, and STN. According to the website, STN was implemented to reduce the impact of scalability testing on testnet and to preserve testnet as a network for testing of applications built on top of Bitcoin SV, without requiring testnet users to make significant hardware available.

Block 11891 on the STN was 0.95 GB in size and processed a total of 9530 transactions in the block. Block 11901 was 1 GB in size, and block 11902 was 1.4 GB in size, which could possibly be the biggest block mined on the STN.


Is Bigger Better?

The question of bigger block sizes has sparked quite a few debates, be it Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, or Bitcoin SV. It was one of the reasons why Bitcoin Cash forked from Bitcoin and why Bitcoin SV forked from Bitcoin Cash.

However, does massive block size really solve the scaling problem without any drawbacks? The Operations Manager of STN, Brad Kristensen, had some interesting things to say to AMBCrypto about the recent achievements of the STN.

Brad stated,

“We’re very pleased with the results, and I think it’s a strong signal of what is to come from Bitcoin SV on mainnet as we continue to increase adoption. The STN is running the same public release available right now (0.2.0). Anyone can join the STN to test their applications /services.”

According to BSV’s roadmap, the first upgrade for the project will be ‘Quasar,’ which is proposed for July 24, 2019, and will concentrate on scaling by increasing the default block size hard cap.

Centralization or scaling?

Andreas Antonopoulos, a prominent Bitcoin advocate, had a different opinion on the rise in block size for Bitcoin SV. When AMBCrypto reached out to him, he commented,

“Large blocks have a centralizing effect on mining and node operators. It is unlikely that the main BTC chain will increase the blocksize as it has taken a different path for scaling, via layer-2 payment channels (Lightning Network) and on-chain optimizations (Segwit, Schnorr etc.).”

As stated by Antonopoulos at the ‘Bitcoins in Bali’ meetup on June 27, 2017, if the block size is increased in orders of magnitude at a rate that is proportional to the increase in user base, a difficult problem will emerge wherein Bitcoin transitions from a decentralized to a centralized system.

Additionally, Antonopoulos said,

“If my block takes 11 minutes to validate, then i’m off the blockchain, which means fewer people can validate independently, which means the system becomes centralized. With which one of these increases, fewer people can participate in the validation process, fewer people can participate in storing the data, and fewer people can participate in being independent actors. We go from a system that is decentralized to a system that gradually gets more and more centralized.”

The above gives a clear idea of what could happen if the block size increases. However, Craig Wright announced in one of his Medium articles of his plans to increase the block size, giving his opinion on the same,

“The reality is that scaling on-chain is much simpler than anyone likes to admit. There is nothing special to be done in order to achieve this, it is just allowing commercial systems to compete and to remove the false idea that home use and hobby nodes need to be subsidized”

So, how will BSV fare? Will it still be successful after implementing larger blocksize or will it accept the centralization that comes with increased block sizes? Only time will tell.

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