Monero’s recent Bulletproof hard fork, which was released on October 18th, has added a number of new features to the platform. Most notable are the dramatically reduced fees that the platform is experiencing: the official website is now reporting that Monero’s median fees are close to one cent per transaction.
Monero has historically suffered from relatively high fees, and part of that problem was due to the fact that its privacy features put a heavy load on the network. In order to keep transactions private, the Monero network uses ring confidential transactions. This privacy feature means that only senders and recipients are authorized to see their transaction details, while the blockchain can validate transactions without exposing said details.
This requires the Monero network to perform fairly demanding computations that are not imposed by public blockchains. However, Monero’s adoption of the Bulletproof protocol reduced transaction size significantly, and those smaller transaction sizes have been putting less of a demand on the Monero network. This allows transactions to be validated more cheaply and quickly.
Monero’s fees reached a high point last December, when the average Monero transaction cost 20 cents. That fee has now dropped to a median of 1.05 cents per transaction. By contrast, the average Ethereum transaction costs 1.4 cents, while the average Litecoin transaction costs 3.9 cents. Bitcoin, meanwhile, still maintains its infamously high fees: the average BTC transaction costs 41 cents. This makes Monero’s fees very competitive indeed.
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The reduced fees are, without a doubt, good news for Monero. The project has weathered two major security bugs over the past few months and was forced to make difficult decisions about disclosing the issues publicly. Although little if any financial harm resulted from those events, the community was critical of the team’s communication practices.
The successful introduction of the Bulletproof protocol is much-needed good news for Monero, and users are celebrating the feature. The improvement may get previously wary users on Monero’s side once again.
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