According to a report from Bitcoin-only exchange River, the increased usage of the Lightning Network is playing a crucial role in Bitcoin’s development as a better medium of exchange. The Lightning Network has experienced a staggering 1,212% growth in two years, with around 6.6 million routed transactions in August 2023, compared to 503,000 transactions in August 2021. This growth occurred despite a 44% decrease in Bitcoin’s price and less online search interest. River’s research analyst, Sam Wouters, emphasized that the notion that “nobody is using Lightning” should now be dismissed.
Key points from the report:
– The 6.6 million figure for Lightning-routed transactions is a lower-bound estimate.
– In August 2023, $78.2 million in transaction volume was processed on Lightning, marking a 546% increase from August 2021.
– Lightning now processes at least 47% of Bitcoin’s on-chain transactions.
– The average Lightning transaction size in August 2023 was around 44,700 satoshis or $11.84.
– Between 279,000 and 1.1 million Lightning users were active in September.
– Gaming, social media tipping, and streaming sectors contributed to 27% of transaction growth.
– River reported a 99.7% success rate for Lightning payments on its platform in August 2023.
– The main reason for payment failures is the lack of a payment route with sufficient liquidity.
In summary, the report highlights the significant growth and success of the Lightning Network in facilitating Bitcoin transactions, indicating its potential to enhance Bitcoin’s role as a medium of exchange.