1st August 2019 is an important day in the cryptocurrency industry because as of today, 85% of the total Bitcoin supply has been mined. Now, we can only mine 3.15 million new Bitcoins in the next 120 years.
Satoshi Nakamoto, the alleged creator of Bitcoin, did a smart move by limiting the total number of Bitcoins that could be mined to 21 million. Limited supply imparts anti-inflationary properties to the cryptocurrency. To make this simple, you can consider a situation where gold has an endless supply. What will happen to its prices?
On Thursday, the Bitcoin network mined the 17,850,000th Bitcoin. The increasing number of Bitcoins that have been mined isn’t a piece of great news for miners as every time a block is mined, the miners are rewarded with less cryptocurrency.
This is because every time 210,000 blocks are added to the blockchain, the reward gets halved. This is done to keep the new production constant and to compensate for the increasing hardware speed and the number of users running nodes over time.
Presently, the miners are rewarded with 12.5 Bitcoins for each block. The reward will be halved sometime in May 2020 as per the predictions.
Once the 21 million Bitcoins have been mined, the reward for miners will also vanish. In such a situation, according to Nakamoto’s Bitcoin White Paper, the Bitcoin network can start rewarding the miners in the form of transaction fees.