Major American cryptocurrency exchange Kraken reportedly started implementing the Bitcoin (BTC) Lightning Network for users a bit later than the firm originally planned.
Bitcoin maximalist Mr.Hodl took to Twitter on Wednesday to report that Kraken has implemented the Lightning Network. He attached a screenshot of the supposed new Kraken withdrawal process allowing users to complete a withdrawal request from a Lightning wallet to receive BTC from their accounts.
“The Lightning network runs on top of the Bitcoin blockchain to enable more uses of Bitcoin,” Kraken’s withdrawal notice on the screenshot reads.
It's official! @krakenfx has implemented the Lightning Network.— Mr.Hodl B.R.E.A.M. (@MrHodl) March 29, 2022
Congrats @jespow, @brianchoffman, @BitcoinIsSaving and the rest of the Kraken guys.
(Screw Dan Held though ) https://t.co/tF5CP7JB5A pic.twitter.com/6LikdzdJ18
It appears that no other Kraken users have reported the supposed BTC Lightning implementation on the platform so far. Instead, some Kraken customers said that they didn’t have the Lightning option to withdraw BTC as of Tuesday, suggesting that the Lightning implementation should be extended for all accounts within 24 hours.
The first reports of Kraken’s BTC Lightning integration surfaced in mid-March from data appearing on the Lightning Network explorer known as Amboss Space. Bitcoin Lightning enthusiasts spotted the new Lightning node and shared their suspicions about a Lightning integration on social media.
A spokesperson for Amboss told Cointelegraph on March 16 that the explorer received “network gossip” broadcasting its node alias as Kraken with an octopus and a lightning emoji, noting that any node could theoretically change their alias and act as an imposter. “But this is already a very large node at 7 BTC in capacity,” the representative said, adding:
“Kraken has not contacted us to verify that this node is theirs using our standard Twitter plus digital signature verification process to prove ownership. However, judging by the restrictive channel policies, their choice of channel peers and the size of their nodes and channels, this appears to be legitimate.”
At the time of writing, the total capacity of Kraken’s alleged node capacity on Lightning amounts to more than 2.8 billion satoshis, or 28 BTC, according to Amboss data.
Kraken's Bitcoin product manager Pierre Rochard confirmed to Cointelegraph on March 31 that exchange has successfully implemented the Lightning Network, providing its clients with instantaneous settlement of BTC transactions. He said:
“Bitcoin has proven to be an effective store of value over the last decade and is now seeing increased use as a borderless global currency [...] Withdrawing to a Lightning mobile wallet is a seamless process and accelerates BTC adoption as a medium of exchange.”
As previously reported, Kraken officially announced plans to integrate the Bitcoin Lightning Network in late 2020, scheduling the implementation for 2021. Some crypto observers chuckled about exchanges like Kraken taking long to integrate Lightning as some candidates for the United States Congress have managed to adopt it before.
A candidate for US Congress adopted Lightning before Binance, Coinbase, Robinhood, And Kraken.#Bitcoin pic.twitter.com/i2e5G2rTOj— Dennis Porter (@Dennis_Porter_) November 30, 2021
Related: Bitcoin transaction fees briefly doubled yet remain exceptionally low
Released in March 2018, the Lightning Network is a Bitcoin layer-two protocol designed to provide faster and cheaper BTC transactions. Bitfinex is believed to be the first crypto exchange in the world to enable Lightning payments by integrating the protocol in December 2019.
Disclaimer: This article was updated on April 1 to reflect that Kraken has successfully implemented the Lightning Network, confirmed by the firm’s Bitcoin product manager Pierre Rochard.