There is no use trying to sugar coat this- the cryptocurrency bear market has been the largest and most frustrating in history. With Bitcoin solidly below 4,000 USD, Ethereum sliding below 100 USD and the decline in the cryprocurrency market of 90% from 2018, there is not alot of positive I can point to on the horizon. And yet, amid this horrendous market we find ourselves in, the Lightning Network that will enable everyday scalability of Bitcoin and Litecoin is taking off in a huge way.
The Lightning Network is a protocol that sits on top of the Bitcoin and Litecoin blockchains and records all transactions for a period of time. This helps the scalability problem both currencies have by reporting a single consolidated transaction that takes less space on the chain. The Bitcoin blockchain handles approximately 2,500 transactions per 10-minute block and can become clogged as more people use it.
Recently, the Lightning Network logged a $2 million usage, or approximately 600 Bitcoins. And Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey recently hinted that Twitter may use the Lightning Network for transactions. Twitter has 275 million individual users. Recently, a vending machine company trialed the Lightning Network for micro purchases and was successful.
My prediction is that the Lightning Network will take off this year and become bigger every year. The applications for the Lightning Network mean both Bitcoin and Litecoin scalability can be solved and we may be buying Snickers Bars with our cryptocurrency soon. It means money transfer services like Western Union need to step their game up. Why wait 3-days when we can settle this transaction now?