As this year wraps up for the Lighting Network 2023 community, there is much to recap. This year may have been the most exciting to date for the Lightning Network in terms of expansion and usability. The community has had some ups and downs, but overall, 2023 has been an outstanding year for the Lighting Network. Here's a look back into the excitement and milestones that helped make this a year to remember for Lightning Network users.
Africa Goes Lightning
The year started with Nigeria getting its first Lightning Node. This move would mark the first of many nodes opening up on the continent this year. Currently, Africa is a strong supporter of Bitcoin as a means to escape inflation and censorship. As such, the Lightning Network helps to facilitate low-cost transfers and enables people to save value.
Exchanges Go Lightning Network 2023
This year saw a rush of major CEXs introducing the Lightning network into their business model. These influential trading platforms leveraged the Lightning Network to reduce withdrawal and purchase fees for users. Mt. Pelerin started the trend in February. Notably, it was quickly duplicated by a myriad of popular CEXs seeking to remain competitive.
Atomic Multipath Upgrade
The Atomic Multipath upgrade improved channel capacity for Lightning Network users considerably. The system enables users to send large payments over multiple channels automatically and securely. This protocol helped improve usability for many and opened the door for large-scale payment systems.
Bitcoin Smart Contracts
The Lightning Network expanded Bitcoin's functionality this year with the introduction of smart contracts. Firms like OmniBolt integrated ways to issue assets on Bitcoin's blockchain. These services have expanded and today there are many Bitcoin-powered platforms and assets for traders to integrate into their portfolios.
MASH Lightning Wallet Launches
The MASH Lightning Wallet is a flexible non-custodial light client mobile wallet. The wallet is geared towards web3 activities and has cool options including auto-pay, budgets, and pay-by-click options.
Blockstream, one of the premier Lighting Network development teams, again helped drive adoption with the introduction of their Greenlight toolkit. This tool set helps developers who want to integrate the Lightning Network into their platforms do so efficiently.
El Salvador Bitcoin ATMS Add Lightning Network 2023
Few countries support Bitcoin like El Salvador. The country has seen success after approving Bitcoin as legal tender. This movie has helped improve education and provide relief for inflation. Continuing on that path, the nation integrated the Lightning Network into the country's many Bitcoin ATMS. This move has helped save citizens on fees and time. It also expanded the community.
MASH TFTC Launch
The MASH Wallet and the popular Bitcoin podcast TFTC joined forces to introduce a new Lightning Powered social media platform. The new network enables micro comments on paragraphs with tipping and other cool features that help drive engagement.
A Big Year for The Lightning Network
It would be hard to argue that this hasn’t been an amazing year for the Lightning Network community. Bitcoin's top scaling solution continues to expand in its functionality and adoption. As such, you can expect next year to be even more exciting. For now, a big thanks to everyone who helped push the Lightning Network forward in 2023.