Looks like Bitcoin is here to stay, and with the launch of Lightening Network, a subsidiary protocol that ‘enables fast transaction between participating nodes’, the Bitcoin scalability problem has subsequently improved since its launch with currently 7,217 nodes, 34,418 active channels and a network capacity of 775 BTC.
According to Kevin Rooke, Tippin.me extension that uses lightning network has received some impressive stats with close to 15,000 plus tips and counting, within three months of the chrome browser extension going live. The figures have been verified by Lightning Explorer.
‘Layer 2’ Lightning Network and Bitcoin blockchain
The bitcoin blockchain suffers from a major snag when it comes to scalability which limits transactions per second on the Bitcoin network. For instance the payment processor, Visa can process approximately 24,000tps but in comparison the bitcoin blockchain can process merely 7 tps due to limited block size and the average block creation time capped at 10 minutes.
Giving Tips becomes easier through Lightning Network
To test out the efficiency of Lightening Network in bitcoin transactions, the Tippin.me project was created by Sergio Abril who told Bitcoin Magazine that the goal of the project was to make Lightning Network more accessible by providing users with a web wallet in order to send and receive small amounts of bitcoin for micro-payments such as tipping.
Apparently, this isn’t the first time tipping has been used in the crypto space. According to senior market analyst at eToro, Mati Greenspan,
“Tipping content creators is arguably one of the most mainstream sue cases for internet money, the custom has been alive and thriving in China for more than a decade already. The only difference is that in the east, it is more of a closed ecosystem that was set up by Tencent, and I’m thrilled to that as see it catch on in the west, people are integrating with some of the top cryptos.”
About the Tippin.me project Sergio Abril explains to Bitcoin Magazine,
“I realized that micro-payments could be huge with Lightning Network but there are still some obstacles. You need to be online to get a tip; you needed to generate an invoice every time. It needed to be easier it needed to be way simpler and certainly something more appealing. And that’s how Tippin started.”
The app has been quite popular since its launch with 16,500 tips and 195,000 invoices sent out so far. Since the extension was embedded in Twitter, Jack Dorsey demonstrated how to use the new feature, but the app crashed due to overload servers, although he did receive 12,362 satoshis, which amounted to $0.5 at that time.
The ‘Layer 2’ Lightning Network is still in a developing stage with Sergio putting out a disclaimer that the tipping amount should be miniscule as in cents and not a huge amount for security concerns. Since Tippin.me is a more of a ‘fun experiment’, by making Lightning Network simplified and easier to use, it is definitely going to speed up the process of Lightning Network and Bitcoin adoption in the long run.