Many like to argue against blockchains and cryptocurrencies, stating that the networks aren’t capable of handling the transaction loads necessary to be considered a true form of cryptocurrency. In making their argument, they often refer to the speed of the Visa network, pointing out that Visa processes around 24,000 transactions per second (tps). The problem with this comparison is that it is completely wrong.
Visa doesn’t process 24,000 tps, or even 56 tps. The higher numbers that have been represented are only theoretical figures—in real-world applications, the Visa network only processes around 1,700 tps.
1,700 tps is still a substantial number by any standards and is more than what most blockchains can handle. Some blockchains, like NEO and EOS, attempt to skew the numbers in an effort to make their networks appear stronger than they really are, but what they boast of with their speeds is gained at a cost of decentralization.
By today’s standards, network speed and decentralization are proportional—the higher the speed, the lower the decentralization. However, improving technology is allowing better speeds, or scaling, without risking decentralization.
To that end, Bitcoin BCH is leading the way. A recent Twitter post by Reina Nakamoto highlighted the fact that Bitcoin Unlimited was able to process 166,302 transactions using a block of almost 32 megabytes (MB). She was responding to a post by Andrew Stone, who first tweeted about that 166,302 transactions were completed on a block of 31,999,125 bytes, or just under 32MB. The processing took place on a testnet, but it is still a step in the right direction.
BU and Bitcoin Cash to Visa level transaction handling capacity woohoo ^_^!!
This is the real #ScalingBitcoin.
Real scaling on real Bitcoin.
— ✨Reina Nakamoto✨ 🕊 (@mindstatex) October 7, 2018
Given the number of retail transactions currently seen on the Bitcoin BCH blockchain, it is more than capable of handling the load. As the September stress test showed the network is capable of easily handling blocks of up to 10MB and even as large as 21MB.
At this juncture, with cryptocurrency constantly receiving more support across the globe, it would make sense that all implementations of the network focus on scaling to continue to drive the capabilities and set the foundation for what will invariably be a massive adoption of Bitcoin BCH as the world’s leading peer-to-peer currency.
New to Bitcoin? Check out CoinGeek’s Bitcoin for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about Bitcoin—as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto—and blockchain.