Bitcoin Cash was launched in August 2017, as a direct response to small block sizes on the Bitcoin code. 1MB block sizes were not meeting the demand of the growing community, so a group of dissatisfied crypto enthusiasts decided to create a ‘hard fork’ of the Bitcoin blockchain, with an increased 8MB block size. No one person currently takes credit for the token’s creation; rather it is attributed to a de-centralized group of developers.
Peer to peer (P2P) electronic cash is simply described as online money sent from one person to another without the need for a trusted third-party. As described in the original Bitcoin whitepaper by Satoshi Nakamoto, P2P cash makes use of digital signatures as part of the solution, but the main benefits are lost if a trusted third party is still required to prevent fraud. This makes P2P cash a trustless and safe way to transact without the need of intermediaries.
At the time of the software upgrade (also known as a fork) anyone owning bitcoin was also in possession of the same number of Bitcoin Cash units. The technical difference between Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin is that Bitcoin Cash allows larger blocks in its blockchain than Bitcoin, which in theory allows it to process more transactions per second. Bitcoin Cash was the first of the Bitcoin forks, in which software-development teams modified the original Bitcoin computer code and released coins with “Bitcoin" in their names, with "the goal of creating money out of thin air." In relation to Bitcoin it is characterized variously as a spin-off, a strand, a product of a hard fork, an offshoot, a clone, a second version or an altcoin. On 1 August 2017 Bitcoin Cash began trading at about $240, while bitcoin traded at about $2,700.
To keep the block generation time equal to ten minutes on average, both Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash use an algorithm adjusting the mining difficulty parameter. This algorithm is called the difficulty adjustment algorithm (DAA). Originally, both Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash used the same difficulty adjustment algorithm, adjusting the mining difficulty parameter every 2016 blocks. Since 1 August 2017, Bitcoin Cash also used an addition to the DAA, called an Emergency Difficulty Adjustment (EDA) algorithm. EDA was used alongside the original DAA and it was designed to decrease the mining difficulty of Bitcoin Cash by 20%, if the time difference between 6 successive blocks was greater than 12 hours.
This content is being provided to you for informational purposes only. The content has been prepared by third parties not affiliated with Coinbase Inc or any of its affiliates and Coinbase is not responsible for its content. This content and any information contained therein, does not constitute a recommendation by Coinbase to buy, sell or hold any security, financial product or instrument referenced in the content.