A significant number of Bitcoin (BTC) miners have gone online, leading to a surge in the Bitcoin hash rate, which has now reached 439 exahashes per second (EH/s). Additionally, there were over 682,000 transactions processed in a day, with more than 300,000 ordinals inscribed on the Bitcoin blockchain.
These milestones indicate the network’s strength and stability, as well as the growing adoption of Bitcoin for various purposes, amid the fragmentation of the US banking industry.
With a higher hash rate, the Bitcoin hash rate, which measures the computational power devoted to securing the blockchain, demonstrates increased confidence in the network’s security. The hash rate is a critical indicator of the network’s health, and a higher hash rate means that more miners are participating, making the network more resistant to attacks.
The surge in the hash rate shows that investments in mining infrastructure are growing, despite fluctuations in the price of Bitcoin. Mining of Bitcoin is increasingly taking place in many countries worldwide, using more renewable energy, Therefore, there are no longer concerns of centralization or environmental impacts, as in the past.
However, there is a possibility that the surge in the hash rate might be temporary. According to Denver Bitcoin, a well-known Bitcoin miner with Upstream Data, the surge is influenced by a resurgence in the popularity of Bitcoin ordinal inscriptions. Thus, it’s important to “watch 1500-block to 5k-block avg time to get an understanding of true hashrate,” as he shared in a tweet.
Sometimes 20-100 blocks get found in quick succession, “current hashrate” readout on websites will show crazy number like 450Eh/s.
Always watch 1500-block to 5k-block avg time to get an understanding of true hashrate.
All based on blocktimes there’s no query of “total hashrate.” pic.twitter.com/ijgNsrwzIX
— Adam O (@denverbitcoin) May 2, 2023
Bitcoin ordinal inscriptions offer unique, non-fungible tokens built on the Bitcoin network, with each representing a distinct position on the blockchain. They are inscribed on a satoshi, the smallest Bitcoin denomination, and owners can prove digital ownership of their sats. Ordinals have gained attention among collectors, investors, and enthusiasts as another way to engage with the Bitcoin ecosystem. As a result, the number of inscriptions has exceeded three million, and over 350,000 inscriptions occur in 24 hours. Ordinal inscriptions are transactions, which accounts for the soar in the number of Bitcoin transactions.
More people are buying, selling, and trading Bitcoin Ordinals, leading to a significant increase in the number of daily transactions on the network. As the mempool is currently congested, the cost to send money to wallets on the Bitcoin base chain is considerably higher than usual, with the cheapest transaction fee at 8 satoshis per byte, which equates to around $0.30.
While some believe that Bitcoin Ordinals offer another use case for the network that goes beyond serving as a store of value and medium of exchange, others, like Adam Back, argue that they are useless.