Even though most bitcoin users are focusing their attention on how the protocol should scale, it appears an interesting change is taking place right now. To be more specific, the average transaction fee is dropping sharply, and the bitcoin mempool is virtually empty as of right now. In fact, there are less than 5,000 transactions waiting for confirmations as we speak.
Lower Fees And Empty Mempool?
Bitcoin network congestion has been a critical issue as of late. With a mounting number of transactions, users have to pay higher fees if they want their transfers included in the next network block.This situation has caused quite a bit of controversy over the past few months, as bitcoin transactions quickly became more expensive than using traditional payment methods
For some unknown reason, it appears there is now a clear window during which bitcoin transactions can be sent without spending a lot of money on every transaction. The bitcoin mempool is almost empty, compared to seeing tens of thousands of transactions waiting to be confirmed just a few days ago. It is not uncommon for the mempool to seemingly reset all of a sudden, although this is quite a significant change that very few people anticipated.
As one would come to expect, a lower transaction backlog has a positive impact on the bitcoin transaction fees. Right now, the fees dropped to 2 Satoshi per byte, or 0.4 cents to send a bitcoin transaction. Not too long ago, users were complaining about how they had to spend a full dollar or more to move their bitcoins quickly enough. Things have changed quite significantly over the past few days, that much is certain.
Rest assured this situation will not last all that long, though. Someone will try to flood the bitcoin network once again in the coming days to artificially prop up transaction fees. Spam attacks have been occurring on a frequent basis throughout 2017, and there is no reason to think that situation will change anytime soon.Once these spam attacks occur again, the transaction fees will go up in an accelerating fashion.
It is nice to see under 5,000 unconfirmed transactions on the bitcoin network for a change. Although the weekend is usually a seemingly quieter period for bitcoin transfers, such a low number is very unusual. It is an intriguing development, to say the least, and it will be interesting to see how this situation evolves over the next few weeks. Rest assured this situation will spawn a lot of new discussions moving forward.
JP is a freelance copywriter and SEO writer who is passionate about various topics. The majority of his work focuses on Bitcoin, blockchain, and financial technology. He is contributing to major news sites all over the world, including NewsBTC, The Merkle, Samsung Insights, and TransferGo.