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Bitcoin halving - what is it?

Hi. What is this halving that has gotten so much news in the last few weeks? Is this the same as a fork? I don't really understand this cryptocurrency terminology ...

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Dawid Kędziora

Halving - sometimes called halvening - is a planned reduction in rewards that miners receive for helping to maintain the Bitcoin network by half. Halving takes place once every four years, specifically every 210,000 transaction blocks. As the name suggests, each halving reduces the amount that Bitcoin miners receive in one block by half. When Bitcoin was created in 2009, miners received 50 Bitcoins per block. This reward was reduced to 25 after the first halving in 2012, to 12.5 in 2016, and in that month it was reduced to 6.25 BTC for one mined block. Why does halving exist? The emission of Bitcoins is limited in several ways. Firstly, according to the protocol, only 21 million Bitcoins can be mined and be in circulation. This is an undeniable advantage for many people who are afraid that fiat money emitted by governments may lose value compared to inflation if too much of it is printed. Halving also prevents inflation by periodically slowing down the rate of Bitcoin mining to not exceed demand.

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Halving Bitcoin is the process in which the reward for mining new blocks is reduced by half. In the case of Bitcoin, halving occurs approximately every 4 years, reducing the incentive for miners. It is not the same as a fork, which is a split of the network into two separate branches. Halving aims to control the supply of new coins, which can affect the increase in the value of Bitcoin.

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