With many companies working towards the same goal, development of the Lightning Network continues to push forth. With this being the case, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to hear that payment gateway processor ‘CoinGate’ is going live with Lightning Network on July 1st, 2018.
Launched in 2014, CoinGate has developed into a trusted payment gateway offering over 50 cryptocurrencies, while integrating Shapeshift capabilities. Based out of Lithuania, they are always trying to stay ahead of the curve. CoinGate was one of the first to enact SegWit in 2017, and – although commonplace now – has been batching BTC transactions for over 3 years. They have been doing so in an effort to remain a quick, and cost efficient service. Fast forward to 2018 and we recently saw CoinGate launch a testnet for Lightning Network implementation roughly 1 month ago. This entailed thorough testing of the Lightning Network through a mock coffee shop. This allowed users to try a demo, and see the Lightning Network in action with none of the associated risks. With this month going by seamlessly, CoinGate is now ready to launch the upgrade for select merchants on a live network. After a period of going live with the select merchants, the intention is for Lightning Network to be available for all that use the CoinGate platform.
Their recent announcement – found on their blog – stresses the importance that CoinGate places on the Lightning Network. They truly believe that if adoption of BTC is to continue, a second layer protocol is needed to revamp the system. Bitcoin needs to become lighter, faster, more private, and adaptable – Lightning Network achieves this in one fell swoop.
Not to be left behind, Litecoin, the self-touted ‘silver to Bitcoins gold’, will also see the Lightning Network go active alongside BTC on CoinGates platform. In years past, Litecoin has typically been viewed as a quicker, more nimble version of BTC. It was a trust worthy coin, that often saw adoption of upgrades much soon than BTC. It was designed to function alongside BTC, acting more as a currency while the prior was viewed as a store of value. Through the activation of Lightning Network, developers are potentially throwing a wrench in the gears that make Litecoin turn. Through Lightning Network, developers are potentially taking away the very attributes that separated LTC from BTC, and pitting them more as competitors than the companions they have been thus far.
In the coming months, a lot of eyes will be on CoinGate and other early adopters of the Lightning Network. If they can successfully run the protocol without any major hiccups, it is only a matter of time before we see more mainstream adoption. If that comes to pass, BTC maximalists very well may have the last laugh. Although future BTC may not resemble Satoshis original vision, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. As stated in the CoinGate press release, “Lightning Network, although still a fresh new technology, fits exactly in our vision of what Bitcoin should be in the future.”