Bitcoin Outputs Stop Growing After 2 Years As Network Relaxes

The number of Bitcoin unspent transaction outputs (UTXOs) has stopped growing, leading to suggestions new users are declining.

Data from Blockchain uploaded to Reddit Sunday shows the number of such outputs - each representing a sent transaction - leveling off after almost two years of consistent growth.

“Bitcoin has no new users?” a user highlighting the statistics queried.

The slowdown comes amid several changes in Bitcoin network behavior which have in fact served to help existing users. 

Bitcoin’s mempool - the size of unconfirmed transactions - has decreased dramatically in June. Transactions have thus become both faster and much cheaper, calming previous rampant complaints that Bitcoin was too expensive to use.

Responding to the Reddit post, Jorge Stolfi, professor of computer science at the State University of Campinas, likewise noted transaction confirmation numbers had dropped last month.

“[...T]hat was an expected result of the 1 MB limit. It is back to ~250,000, as estimated from the average tx size,” he added.

“Even so, the UTXO set size should have continued to increase at the same rate as two months ago.” 

Other users meanwhile suggested a combination of high fees, new users waiting for the results of a potential Bitcoin hard fork and the newfound appeal of altcoins as possible reasons for the phenomenon.


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