With each new Bitcoin that comes into formation, the total supply becomes more and more limited. Within the coming few days, the 17,000,000th Bitcoin unit is going to be mined unless something unexpected happens. This Bitcoin, once mined will be yet another important mark for the world of Bitcoin. Why? Because there will only ever be 21,000,000 Bitcoins that will ever be made.
In retrospect when we look at 2016, this is the first million marker to be hit since then. We’re reminded of the fact that Bitcoin actually managed to achieve something significant when it comes to computer coding. It has actually managed to create a rarity in the digital realm for something through this currency system based on distributed ledger technology. IT’s also something that was left open source for others to utilize the basis of Bitcoin’s coding to create their own.
The core programming of Bitcoin makes sure that there will only ever be a limited amount of Bitcoins that will come into existence as Bitcoins are made in this digital economic system at set intervals. The 17,000,000th Bitcoin’s production is being interpreted in many ways. Some are looking at it with the perspective that only one fifth of the Bitcoin which will ever exist is left to be mined. Others see it as a significant milestone for the technology.
A Remarkable Achievement
The 17,000,000th Bitcoin milestone being reached is a significant reminder of how this technology has been successful at creating a sort of scarcity in a digital asset that emulates the scarcity of let’s say something that is of value and occurs naturally (hint: Like Gold). Unless all of the users on the Bitcoin blockchain network decide to go for it in unison, the total number of Bitcoins will not increase. This is something that will not happen.
Unlike with traditional currencies, the limited supply of Bitcoin will prevent inflation. Increasing the supply of a currency by central governments is something that can be looked at as a form of increasing taxes without making it apparent. Bitcoin is based on a decentralized system so the inflation is an unlikelihood.
Miners on the blockchain network who help to maintain the cryptocurrency are rewarded for the computational and energy resources they invest into the blockchain network. The reward for mining the blocks initially was 50 Bitcoins for the successful completion of a block and that remained until the first 210,000 Bitcoins were made. That’s 10 percent of the total supply. From then on, every 210,000 Bitcoins, the reward given to miners is halved.
The most recent halvening in 2016 has brought down the reward to 12.5 Bitcoins. This halvening means that the total number of remaining Bitcoins will not be reached as quickly as they have been in the almost decade long existence of Bitcoin.
Even though with the 17,000,000th Bitcoin being made, there will only be about 20 percent of the total supply of Bitcoins to be mined, there will be plenty of Bitcoin for everybody. A single Bitcoin is divisible into 100,000,000 Satoshis. This milestone is just another reminder of how much we have achieved with the power of technology and how much more we still can.
Charlie Shrem is a Bitcoin pioneer, a social economist and digital currency trader. His work in this field is legendary. In 2011, at the dawn of the crypto era, he founded BitInstant, the first and largest Bitcoin company. In 2013, he founded the Bitcoin Foundation and serve as its vice chairman. Since then, Charlie has advised more than a dozen digital currency companies, launched and managed numerous partnerships between crypto and non-crypto companies, and is the go-to guy for some of the world’s wealthiest entrepreneurs. In short, he is the ultimate insider at the epicenter of the crypto universe.
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