Bitcoin exchange BTCC has added a new service to its platform that prioritizes bitcoin transaction confirmations. From now on, users will experience lower confirmation times.

BTCChina, the oldest, and one of the largest Bitcoin exchanges in the country, has developed BlockPriority; a new service that allows its users (even those that pay zero transaction fees) prioritized confirmations in transactions to and from BTCC wallets.

BlockPriority is also designed to grant fast confirmations when the Bitcoin network is under stress or during spam attacks. The service comes free of charge for all BTCC users and is already live within their system.

BTCC’s Chief Technology Officer, Mikael Wang, states:

“BlockPriority is the latest addition to our proprietary blockchain technology services. It demonstrates our commitment to providing our customers and the wider Bitcoin community with the best and most convenient experience possible.”

BTCC’s Chief Technology Officer, Mikael Wang

BlockPriority works by sending transactions to and from all BTCC wallets directly to the BTCC mining pool, which is one of the largest in the world - amounting for about 13% of the total hashing power.

Too Good To Be True?

We asked Pavel Kravchenko, Chief Cryptographer at Tembusu Systems, what BlockPriority’s advantages are, and if this technology can really make a difference. He commented:

“First, the average block size is still 0.5MB, second, the BTCC mining pool makes only 13% of hashing power. I think that the probability that a transaction will be processed faster is really small. In fact this feature is just a substitution for higher transaction fees that people pay to make their transactions being processed faster.”

According to Kravchenko, the best case scenario is one where the increase in transaction speed is probably just 13%, which corresponds to the hashing power of the BTCC pool. Thirteen percent? Is it possible that BTCC’s new BlockPriority service is merely a gimmick for PR? We contacted BTCC for more details on BlockPriority.

Samson Mow, BTCC's chief operating officer said:

"BlockPriority is not a gimmick. We built it to address the deficiencies in the current version of Bitcoin Core. Ideally, there would be no need for BlockPriority, but unfortunately that's not where we're at today.

"We were very careful in crafting our press release to avoid all of the words that the media are using to describe BlockPriority: faster, speed, lower confirmation times, advantage, etc. BlockPriority only increases priority — that's why we named it as such. Mining a block is not guaranteed, so unless we can do that, there is no speed increase. BlockPriority is a defensive measure to protect our customers from attacks on the network or confirmation delays because blocks are full. Traders on our exchanges, wallet users, merchants, and miners, are real people who rely on our services and whose livelihoods are intertwined with bitcoin.

"Let's not forget that in the end, bitcoin has users, and as individuals and companies that have the power to impact those users, we need to actually serve them and look out for their best interests. We launched BlockPriority ahead of the Scaling Bitcoin conference for a reason – we want to emphasize the problems and the need for more action and less discussion."