Every four years, Bitcoin halving dominates the crypto news.
It’s more anticipated than the Ethereum Merge and even the Bitcoin Taproot Upgrade. It’s associated with rallies and new all-time highs, and some investors spend years preparing for it.
Could the Bitcoin halving of 2024 be different?
This event benefits everyone but miners because it halves block rewards.
And if miners can’t sustain the network, the Bitcoin blockchain dominance could come to an end. The problem worsens after the last Bitcoin is mined and there are no more block rewards.
What does that mean for 2024, and how do you prepare? Let’s find out.
Part of what makes Bitcoin valuable is its programmed scarcity. The founder Satoshi Nakamoto designed it to control inflation and stabilize the token supply. There can only be 21M Bitcoins, and it takes exponentially longer to reach that cap.
Even though there are already +19M tokens, the last Bitcoin halving is expected for 2140.
For a simple Bitcoin halving definition, here’s the context:
Thus, on the next multiple of 210,000, Bitcoin rewards fall to 3.125BTC. As the 4th halving, that’s block no. 840,000. But why 2024?
Well, the blockchain regulates mining difficulty so every new block takes ~10min to generate:
840,000 - 773,000 = 67,000 blocks left (or 10m intervals)
67,000 converts to ~465 days. That’s April 24th, 2024, or as late as June.
Interestingly enough, miners don’t increase network fees after halving:
It’s always averaged <100 Satoshi per transaction (less than $10). The highest was $62.78 due to high network congestion. Compared to Ethereum, that’s low:
BTC Halvings from 2024 and on have more price impact because of the diminishing supply and increasing demand.
Originally there were ~1.3M Bitcoins, which expanded to 10M by the 2012 halving, ~15M by 2016, and ~18M by 2020. With ~19M today, we might see multiple halvings before 20M BTC. Supply has barely increased since 2020, making every halving more impactful for market demand.
So the volume and prices should be more volatile than ever before. As for 2023, the average 24h volume is above $40B. The occasional $20B lows are the all-time highs in the previous halving.
That doesn’t mean that 19M Bitcoins are tradeable:
That leaves less than 10M tokens, which favors Bitcoin demand and price. Along with the increased trading volume, this halving brings a higher chance of all-time highs and altcoin market recovery. Short term, the opposite is more likely. Expect network congestion and millions of Bitcoin ready for sale.
They’re not. Halving events are common among the first cryptocurrencies that use proof-of-work:
Even Dogecoin halving existed before they removed max supply in 2015.
It’s possible to speed up the halving event by verifying transactions faster. Bitcoin upgrades (Segwit, Taproot…), high network fees, and better hardware can speed up block validation. At least, for about two weeks.
That’s because Bitcoin modulates mining difficulty every 2016 blocks. So even with a quantum computer, you may win most blocks, but it’s still 10 minutes each. Slowing down won’t work either.
If you already know what the Bitcoin blockchain looks like, the process is just as straightforward:
If you checked later on block 840,000, it will be 3.125BTC.
Here’s proof of the last Bitcoin halving before and after:
The Bitcoin rainbow chart uses multiple formulas to include all previous BTC prices within the same area. The upper limit follows the all-time highs, and the lowest one, local price bottoms. According to this chart, every Bitcoin halving moves the price up by ~10x, then down by ~75%, and it doesn’t rally again until the next halving.
But the chart doesn’t predict Bitcoin, only follows it. After 2022, it no longer matched the price action, so they had to find another formula that matches new prices. It’s an arbitrary trendline.
The Bitcoin Halving Event is coming up in 2024.
The last few halvings has preceded multiple crypto bull runs.
Will 2024 be the same?
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Max is a European based crypto specialist, marketer, and all-around writer. He brings an original and practical approach for timeless blockchain knowledge such as: in-depth guides on crypto 101, blockchain analysis, dApp reviews, and DeFi risk management. Max also wrote for news outlets, saas entrepreneurs, crypto exchanges, fintech B2B agencies, Metaverse game studios, trading coaches, and Web3 leaders like Enjin.