A new signaling period for the long-debated code change Segregated Witness (SegWit) just started — and it looks like it might be the last.
If at least 95% of blocks during the 2,016-block period signal support for the change, it will ‘lock in’ on the network, a move that would ensure the activation of the code, first proposed in 2015, on the bitcoin blockchain.
With it, bitcoin will be upgraded to remove transaction malleability, an issue that enabled users to manipulate unconfirmed transactions, and increase the network’s capacity (though it remains disputed just how big this boost will be and how long it will be to take effect).
So far, 100% of blocks indicate that miners are in support, and there’s no indication that mining pools will let up – should they fail to do so, their blocks would be orphaned, meaning they wouldn’t be able to collect bitcoin’s valuable block rewards.
At press time, bitcoin’s block reward was roughly $35,000.
If miners continue to signal, SegWit will lock-in at block 479,808 (around August 8). For more on bitcoin’s ongoing code transition, read our full Beginner’s Guide here.