Bitcoin Cash is nearing a major upgrade. The fourth-largest cryptocurrency recorded a price per token of $1,455.25 on Monday, with a market cap of $24.9 billion that gives it a valuation nearly double that of competitor EOS. The new upgrade is set to re-open old arguments about the role of Bitcoin Cash, and there’s evidence to suggest the upgrade could lead to big movements in the markets.
First, a quick primer. What is a “hard fork”? Bitcoin Cash was created as a “fork” of the original Bitcoin in August 2017, largely over disagreements about mysterious inventor Satoshi Nakamoto’s original vision for the cryptocurrency launched in 2009. The Bitcoin network stores transaction data in “blocks” which add onto a global chain (hence the term “blockchain”), and around one new block is added to the chain every 10 minutes. Bitcoin’s block size has remained at one megabyte, and Cash supporters claim it needs to expand to continue working as a viable means of transferring value internationally. Bitcoin Cash launched with a block size of eight megabytes, which potentially means more transactions processed at once.
This new upgrade, set for Tuesday, is known as the Adjustable Blocksize Cap upgrade. It quadruples the size of the block to 32 megabytes, while also enabling smart contract creation. The upgrade has a number of implications for speed and decentralized apps, also known as “dapps.”
“A larger block size means that the network will have a better transaction throughput which should help it on its way to commercial adoption,” cryptocurrency blog CaptainAltCoin writes, which predicts a continuation of the coin’s upwards trend. “Smart contracts mean that Bitcoin Cash will become a suitable platform for people to develop Dapps on. With its improved block size it should have transactions that will be faster and more scalable than Ethereum, currently the main Dapp platform out there.”