Lightning Network Can’t Guarantee Transactions Larger Than 3 Cents…Yet

Digital assets industry newsletter has poured cold water on Bitcoin’s Lightning Network, claiming low transaction success rates and issues with node dominance.

A Classic Beta Landscape?

In its latest issue June 25, the weekly publication identified statistics about the current state of Lightning, highlighting problems for which the likelihood of improvement remains “unclear.”

“Nodes are up by 8600% and the Bitcoin funds on the network are up by 3600% from the start of the year. It’s less clear, however, whether the concentration of capacity amongst the largest nodes will improve with more adoption,” Diar writes.

The criticism focuses on the fact that the ten largest Lightning nodes currently hold over half the network’s 25 BTC in funds. Among those are early mover businesses, which added payment functionality, including top-up service Bitrefill and payment network Living Room of Satoshi.

Such “large hubs,” Dogecoin creator Jackson Palmer argues, is a “necessary” step in order to achieve mass popularity.

CasaHODL engineer Jameson Lopp, meanwhile countered the criticism saying that the max allowed payment value is currently only around $250 since the network is still in beta.  He added:

The difficulty in making payments over $100 is by design (for safety) and easily changed when developers are confident in the robustness of the network.

Businesses Queue Up To Broaden Network

Despite the rapid growth of available channels on mainnet Lightning, the likelihood of seeing success for a payment past a certain amount is slim, says Diar quoting Reddit data. In other words, the Lightning Network in its current state can only guarantee a 100% success for transactions no bigger than three cents.

As the source material subsequently noted in an update, the chances of “spending a coffee” successfully between two nodes is around 70%…

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