There were more than 20,000 pending transactions for the last blocks before the halving. The transaction fees were around 100 sat/byte to enter the next block.
This is the third time that a halving has occurred in Bitcoin’s history. That reduction by half in the rewards per block mined is set in the network code every 210,000 blocks. Miners will now go from receiving 12.5 BTC to 6.25 BTC per block.
Given the expectations regarding the price, and after momentarily exceeding USD 10,000, Bitcoin’s value in the market fell below USD 9,000 again, reaching USD 8,400. After a slight rebound, the price went to around USD 8,943, according to data from CoinMarketCap.
Regarding the state of the network, during the hours before the halving, the network was less congested than in previous days and weeks. Besides, there were over 20,000 unconfirmed transactions on Bitcoin, according to data mempool.space.
The numbers on jochen-hoenicke.de coincide, and that record also shows that the number of pending transactions even exceeded 80,000 at some point on April 30th, four times the current amount. Until now, that level of congestion has been the highest on the network this year.
In recent days, the total number of transactions processed on the network has ranged from 280,000 to 340,000 daily. In the last month, even on April 12th alone, there were fewer than 240,000 transactions, according to data from Coin Metrics.
On the other hand, it is possible to see on mempool.space that the last 4 mined blocks were 1,195 MB on average. Before the halving, there were about 18 MB of data to confirm among the pending transactions, as the same source shows.
Bitcoin Hash Rate, Fees and other Metrics
During the mining of the last blocks, the average of fees soared again. Between blocks 629,964 and 629,967, fees went from 6 sat/byte to 112 sat/byte. On average, those last fees were equivalent to USD 2.47, according to data from mempool.space.
Meanwhile, the hash rate on the network was close to its all-time high. Data from Coin Metrics show that last Sunday, May 10th, Bitcoin’s hash rate exceeded 136 EH/s. March 1st had the maximum so far, with 136.2 EH/s, as the same source indicates.
Consequently, Bitcoin mining difficulty was similarly close to its all-time high. Coin Metrics shows that the difficulty was at 16.10481T, whilst in mid-March, it had reached 16.5529T. After that record, the difficulty of the main cryptocurrency had its biggest drop since 2011.
The number of active Bitcoin addresses was still around 870,000. Although this represents a decrease, compared with previously reported numbers, the figure remained above the averages of recent months.
At the time of writing this article, block 630,000 has already been mined. With this, the third halving in the history of Bitcoin has come and the rewards for mining have been reduced by half. In this way, a new issuance cycle has begun in Bitcoin’s history, in which 6.25 BTC are created per block mined, about every 10 minutes.
By Alexander Salazar