The world of cryptocurrency was given another nudge into the mainstream after Coinbase, the largest bitcoin trading platform currently operating, announced it is now supporting bitcoin cash (BCH).
As Coinbase unveiled its backing for the currency, which came into existence on August 1, 2017, the company also revealed that anyone who held bitcoin in an account at the time of the fork would get the equivalent amount of BCH added to their balance.
According to the official Coinbase blog (view the original article here) the move follows careful monitoring of the bitcoin cash network, taking into account developer and community support and other factors such as security and trading volume.
Bitcoin cash was created as an alternative to bitcoin, sometimes referred to as bitcoin classic. It came about as a result of the need to increase the size of the blocks – or number of transactions that can be processed at any given time.
To put it very simply, bitcoin classic blocks – or transactions – are capped at 1MB causing widespread concern about transaction processing time, especially as the cryptocurrency has grown in popularity.
Bitcoin cash features an 8MB block size which will enable far more transactions to be completed in a much shorter timeframe. According to finance website Investopedia, this could eventually allow Bitcoin Cash to compete with institutions such as PayPal and Visa.
Financial analysts are also beginning to make a distinction between the two currencies. They are pegging bitcoin classic as a store of wealth, similar to gold or other valuable long-term assets, while bitcoin cash is seen as far more liquid and likely to be used for everyday real-world transactions.
The move by Coinbase is also good news for free bitcoin faucet visitors (See our top-paying faucet list) as there are an increasing number of faucets offering Bitcoin Cash as payment alongside the more traditional bitcoin rewards.
At the time of writing Coinbase had more than 13.3 million registered users in more than 30 countries around the globe.
The US-based company was founded in 2011 and supports transactions in bitcoin, litecoin, ethereum and bitcoin cash.
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