The Lightning Network continues to see expansion in the cryptocommunity. A recent study places the total number of active Lightning Network nodes above 6,000 for the first time in its history. This news comes as a strong sign for Lightning Network advocates that their hard work is paying off.
The Snow Ball Effect – 6000 Nodes
The Lightning Network has experienced record growth this month because of couple important factors. For one, Lightning Network Decentralized App (Lapps) developers continue unveiling new and ever more unique projects. There are now more Lapps than ever.
In less than a year, more than ten Lightning Network wallet solutions have entered the market. Users can now enjoy Lightning Network support with these mobile wallets. Many of these wallets utilize a node to function. LN-enabled wallets are one of the main contributing factors that pushed the Lightning Network’s growth over 6000 nodes. The development of mobile Lightning Network wallets was a big step in increasing user’s accessibility to this revolutionary protocol.
Additionally, a plethora of stores now accept this second layer solution as payment thanks to a flood of new Lightning Network capable processing platforms. Business interested in joining the Lightning Network community can now do so easier than ever. Companies such as OpenNode and BTCPay allow vendors to accept their Lightning Network payments in Bitcoin or their local fiat currency.
Bitcoin Fees Keep Lowering
Aside from the added savings, speed, and capabilities gained from the integration of the Lightning Network, there are other advantages. The Lightning Network has helped to reduce the congestion on the Bitcoin blockchain. This reduction is so significant that a recent study revealed that Bitcoin transactions fees are the lowest they have been in years.
The Lightning Network Community Continues to Grow – 6000 Nodes
Another major factor in the Lightning Network’s unprecedented growth is the fact that it is now easier than ever to stay in touch with LN community developments. There are more ways than ever before to join the Lighting Network community. Interested parties can find more information using a combination of blogs, Slack Communities, mailing lists, and social media.
Many cryptocurrencies utilize off-chain solutions to conduct advanced cryptographic functionalities such as smart contracts. The Lightning Network is no different in that it provides Bitcoin users with smart contract capabilities. Also, users get a couple of other unique features such as the ability to utilize oracles.
Oracles are third-party data collection systems that can be used to trigger smart contracts. For example, you could set up an oracle to automatically send 1 BTC to someone if the temperature goes above 60 degrees, or even if your favorite team scores a touchdown.
Aside from the endless features that the Lightning Network brings to the table, there is also the fact that it is simply much more liquidable than traditional Bitcoin. The reality is that it’s easier to send and much less expensive. This has left many analysts prepared to cash in on some extra Satoshis from trading the difference between traditional and Lightning Network enabled Bitcoin.
Let the Light Shine
Bitcoin needed a solution to alleviate its scalability concerns and the Lightning Network is the answer. Perhaps, the most amazing fact of all is that the Lightning Network is still in its Beta testing stages. This momentum is sure to continue as this off-chain solution reaches its official public release.