24 Jun 2021 9:23 AM +00:00

What Is Bitcoin Halving?

Are you waiting for the next bitcoin halving event? Well, you might be sat around for quite some time.

When cryptocurrency gained prominence, it gave rise to a number of new phenomena including mining, blockchains, and cryptocurrency whale-watching.

Another of these unique aspects is bitcoin halving. Here's what it is.

What is Bitcoin Halving?

Bitcoin halving is a regular event in the crypto-calendar where the amount of BTC rewarded per block is halved.

This event re-occurs every time 210,000 blocks are mined. As a block of BTC takes 10 minutes to mine, bitcoin halving happens every 2,100,000 minutes - or 4 years.

The next 'halvening' will see the reward drop to 3.125 BTC per block.

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Every bitcoin halving reduces the digital currency's inflation rate. This ensures that, while just over 2,000,000 BTC has yet to be mined, bitcoin will not reach its cap until around 2140.

While Satoshi Nakamoto does not mention halving in the bitcoin whitepaper, the event is embedded into bitcoin's code.

Next Bitcoin Halving Date

The next bitcoin halving - known as the 'halvening' - will take place in early 2024 at block 840,000. Current predictions suggest this will be in March 2024. As of June 2021, this is over 150,000 blocks away.

The 2024 bitcoin halving will be the fourth halvening in bitcoin's history.

The latest bitcoin halving occurred on 11 May 2020. It saw the reward fall from 12.5 BTC to 6.25 BTC per block. The first halvening happened in 2012, reducing the reward to 25 BTC from the original reward pricing.

The reward per block will reach 0 after 64 halvings, according to bitcoin's own source code:

if (halvings >= 64)
return 0;

READ MORE: How Many Cryptocurrencies are there in 2021?

[Image by Executium on Unsplash]