The Bitcoin network’s mining difficulty level has increased by over 10%. The change happened on November 18, 2016, as a part of the digital currency network’s inbuilt regulation mechanism. The Bitcoin difficulty level ensures constant block generation times irrespective of the total hashing power.
The increase in difficulty levels from the previous 254,620,187,304 to the new 281,800,917,193 follows an increase in the Bitcoin network’s total hash rate from 1,822,642,296 GH/s to 2,017,209,539 GH/s. The change in Bitcoin network difficulty now stands at 10.68%. This is the first time, the Bitcoin difficulty level has seen a double-digit percentage increase since February, 19 of this year.
For those who are a bit confused, the Bitcoin network difficulty is a metric signifying the increasing complexity of the SHA256 algorithm in comparison to its simplest form. The difficulty levels also signify the amount of processing power required to decipher the encryption to discover new blocks on the Bitcoin network. The difficulty levels are constantly recalculated and adjusted at every 2016 block interval.
The expansion of mining operations and increasing processing power of the mining hardware are the main reasons behind the increasing difficulty levels. The recent surge in difficulty levels can be due to the expansion of few Bitcoin mining pools across the world. With few more data centers set to go live in the coming months, we can expect the difficulty level to rise further.
According to the information available on one of the cryptocurrency websites, the next estimated Bitcoin difficulty level is 304,441,129,592 — which is about 8.03% more than the current level. The new exchange is expected to happen within the next twelve days.
The Bitcoin network witnesses the highest increase in the difficulty level in the beginning of this year after it surged over 20 percent on February 7. As the technology behind the development of ASICs and other specialized hardware continues to improve, the difficulty levels have only one way to go, and that’s upwards.
Ref: Bitcoin Wisdom | Qntra | Image: NewsBTC