On January 3, the crypto community celebrates Bitcoin Genesis Day. This is the day the first BTC block was released back in 2009 and today is the 13th anniversary of this event.
Though the Bitcoin whitepaper was released by Satoshi Nakamoto on October 28, 2008, many say its mint date is January 3, 2009, representing the cryptocurrency's birthday. Therefore, the community celebrates Bitcoin Genesis Day on January 3, and in 2022, its 13th anniversary.
Although Bitcoin faced opposition in 2021, such as with the actions of China, it was overall very successful and hit many records. The past year has marked the beginning of the massive adoption of Bitcoin and its adoption by large firms, foundations, banking institutions, and some entire countries.
CNBC points to eight bitcoin milestones in 2021:
1. Bitcoin surpassed $1 trillion in market value for the first time
On February 19, Bitcoin hit $1 trillion in market value for the first time. The milestone came after major institutional investors and notable financial companies began supporting the cryptocurrency earlier in the year. Companies including Tesla, Square, and MicroStrategy started to use their balance sheets to buy Bitcoin.
2. Morgan Stanley offered wealthy clients access to Bitcoin funds
In March, Morgan Stanley became the first big U.S. bank to offer its clients access to Bitcoin funds. After its clients “demanded exposure to Bitcoin,” the investment bank launched access to three funds that enable ownership of the popular cryptocurrency.
3. El Salvador adopted Bitcoin as legal tender
In June, El Salvador passed a new law to adopt Bitcoin as legal tender, becoming the first country to do so. The law allows Bitcoin to be used as payment for goods and taxes in El Salvador.
4. The first U.S. futures-based Bitcoin ETF launched
In October, the ProShares futures-based Bitcoin ETF made its market debut on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker “BITO.” The Bitcoin futures ETF tracks contracts that speculate on the future price of the digital asset, rather than the current or “spot price” of the cryptocurrency itself. As a result, the prices of the ETF and Bitcoin don’t necessarily match. Nonetheless, the ProShares Bitcoin futures ETF saw one of the “biggest first days on record for ETFs.”
5. The price of Bitcoin hit an all-time high
Just after the value of the entire cryptocurrency market surpassed $3 trillion in November, the price of Bitcoin reached a new record. On November 10, Bitcoin hit an all-time high of over $ 69,044.
6. The first Bitcoin upgrade in four years activated
Taproot, a highly anticipated upgrade to Bitcoin, also went into effect in November. It was Bitcoin's first major upgrade since 2017. Taproot introduced what’s called Schnorr signatures, which help Bitcoin transactions become more private and efficient, and less expensive. Most importantly, the upgrade better enables Bitcoin to execute smart contracts or collections of code that carry out a set of instructions on the blockchain.
7. 90% of the total Bitcoin supply has been mined
As of December, 90% of the total Bitcoin supply of 21 million has been mined. The remainder is not expected to be mined until February 2140. Until then, miners can continue to earn Bitcoin. Bitcoin operates on a proof-of-work model, which means that miners must compete to solve complex math problems to validate transactions. It’s not an easy process: reaching the 90% milestone took 12 years.
8. Bitcoin's hashrate hit an all-time high
On Sunday, Bitcoin's hashrate hit an all-time high of 203.5 exahashes per second. Hashrate is a key metric when assessing blockchain strength. It represents the total amount of computing power used by miners to mint new Bitcoin, but a higher hashrate also means that the network is stronger, more secure, and resistant to potential attacks.
© 2022, Eva Fox | Tesmanian. All rights reserved.
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About the Author
Eva Fox joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover breaking news as an automotive journalist. The main topics that she covers are clean energy and electric vehicles. As a journalist, Eva is specialized in Tesla and topics related to the work and development of the company.