The Lightning Network is Growing Rapidly? Rather not.

How the hype around Bitcoins new technology is just hype and nothing more

No thunderstorm: A little lightning bolt. Picture from sgtgary via flickr.com. License: Creative Commons

Charts, Charts, Charts

We start with probably the most important and unambiguous charts:

Number of channels and total capacity in the lighting network on the 6-month chart. Source: p2sh.info
Number of lightning nodes in the 6-month chart. Source: Lightblock.me
The number of channels per node. The orange line is the average (15,8), the others are ordered by percentile. Source: bitcoinvisuals.com.
The density in the lighting network. Charts of Bitcoinvisuals.com
Cut nodes since February 2018 Source: bitcoinvisuals.com.


Another important data source is some comments from LNBIG on Reddit. LNBIG is the most important liquidity provider in the lighting network. It operates about 20 nodes with numerous channels and bitcoins. If you wish, you can ask for liquidity on the LNBIG website. The great leap in a capacity that the Lightning network made at the beginning of March — from just under 800 to a good 1000 bitcoins — is mainly due to LNBIG.

Enormous media attention and a dilemma

Let’s get this straight: Both the number of channels and the capacity of the lighting network is stagnating or declining; the largest liquidity provider is processing just 200 to 300 payments a day, suggesting that there are barely more than 600 lighting payments a day in total; and there seems to be no way of earning by providing liquidity to the network at the moment.

Photo by Verena Yunita Yapi on Unsplash


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The Cryptocurrency Consultant

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Bitcoin, Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Educator. Passionate Writer. My talent is to easily explain complicated contexts.


A to Z of blockchain technology changing the future