If you’re reading this post I assume that like many others, you sent a bitcoin transaction and was kind of confused as to why it’s still listed as “unconfirmed” or “pending” after a few hours or so.
I mean Bitcoin transactions are supposed to be instant right?
In this post I want to try and explain in a very basic way how a Bitcoin transaction works and why the fee that you attach to each transaction has a crucial role in how long it will take the transaction to go through the network.
Here’s what happens when you send Bitcoins to someone
Whenever you send someone Bitcoins, the transaction goes through different computers running the Bitcoin protocol around the world that make sure the transaction is valid. Once the transaction is verified it then “waits” inside the Mempool (i.e. in some sort of a “limbo” state).
It’s basically waiting to be picked up by a Bitcoin miner and entered into a block of transaction on the Blockchain. Until it is picked up it’s considered an “unconfirmed transaction” or a “pending transaction”. A new block of transactions in added to the Blockchain every 10 minutes on average.
However since there are so many transactions lately due to