Coinbase Announces Support for Bitcoin's Lightning Network

Coinbase, a leading U.S.-based cryptocurrency exchange, has finally announced the implementation of the lightning network, a Bitcoin layer 2 scaling solution. Coinbase will now allow its users to take advantage of this scaling protocol to avoid paying high fees for Bitcoin transactions, enhancing the utility of crypto for customers using Coinbase’s services.


Coinbase Adds Lightning Network Services, Promotes Payments Use Case

Coinbase, a U.S.-based cryptocurrency exchange, has announced support for withdrawals and deposits using the Lightning Network (LN), a Bitcoin layer 2 scaling protocol. With this implementation, Coinbase opens its door to fee-conscious users who want to leverage bitcoin without paying the high fees in its base layer.

The exchange reinforced Lightning Network’s utility as a driver of cryptocurrency payments substituting traditional finance alternatives. In its press release, Coinbase states that with LN, “the cost of sending BTC globally is 20 times less than the average 2% charged on credit card transactions and a fraction of the $30 paid for wire transfers.”

Coinbase relies on Lightspark’s remote node implementation, having control of the signing keys while Lightspark hosts the LN node responsible for processing transactions. Lightspark stated it worked to “ensure the integration was ready for the hundreds of millions of people in 100+ countries who will have access to Lightning payments once the rollout is completed.”

The company had made the case for adopting crypto for payments before. In its State of Crypto report issued in February, Coinbase specified that Americans could have saved at least $74 million in 2022 by leveraging crypto tech instead of credit cards.

Coinbase announced an interest in adding LN support in August when its CEO Brian Armstrong stated it was “not trivial” but worth doing. Later, in September Armstrong stressed that the exchange had “made the decision” to do it, but also stated that it would take time. In April, Coinbase announced that it would enlist the services of Lightspark, an LN-focused payments services company, to streamline and accelerate the process of supporting LN.

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