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Crypto exchange Gemini adds full support for SegWit

Thu, 18 Apr 2019, 05:36 am UTC

Cryptocurrency exchange Gemini has added full support for segregated witness (SegWit), a crucial piece of code for scaling improvements in the bitcoin network, CoinDesk reported.

In an online post dated April 15, Gemini said that it is the first major exchange to launch full support of SegWit, complete with native SegWit deposit addresses. Native SegWit addresses are a newer type of bitcoin address that will help scale bitcoin even further.

“SegWit addresses — which begin with bc1 — can now be used for Bitcoin deposits and withdrawals,” Gemini said.

“Our choice to use native SegWit addresses was based on block space savings as well as safety concerns.”

Gemini explained that SegWit allows storing digital signature information separately (or segregated) from its transaction data. This, in turn, makes bitcoin transactions weigh around 30–40 percent less, thereby taking less block space and lower transaction fee.

“As block space is limited, any decrease in transaction size allows for more transactions per block and greater overall throughput in the network,” it added.

In addition to block space savings and safety concerns, another reason why Gemini wanted to adopt SegWit is that it enables lightning – a "Layer 2" payment protocol enabling fast transactions between participating nodes.

“As SegWit’s use, support, and adoption grows, it will help reduce fees, wait times, and network congestion. Critically, SegWit transactions lay the groundwork for more advanced technologies; of which the Lightning network is the most well known,” it said.

“We believe SegWit will become the standard, and in doing so, will create extensive benefits for all participants on the Bitcoin network.”

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