Note: The following article was chosen for publication as part of CoinTelegraph’s Super Writer contest
If you are reading this article there is a good chance you may have already heard something about Bitcoin’s scalability issues. The sad truth is that the Bitcoin network is fundamentally not scalable.
Ready for primetime?
At the moment this is not an issue since the number of transactions is only about 220 million per year. This may sound like a lot but when you consider there are approximately 7 billion people on the planet that works out to a measly 0.0314 transactions per person per year. By comparison Visa and Master Card process tens of thousands of transactions per second.
Most Bitcoiners are exceedingly impatient for their currency to become a ubiquitous instrument of internet commerce. Unfortunately, Bitcoin is not even remotely ready for prime-time duty. Currently miners process 7 transactions a second by hashing 1MB blocks of data, but if everyone on earth executed just two transactions a day it would require 24GB data blocks, claiming 3.5TBs of hard drive space per day, which equals 1.27PBs per year.
This scenario, of course, is completely impractical and creates a host of problems for miners and nodes