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Everything you need to know about SegWit2x: Can we expect 4 “different Bitcoins”?

Mary Ann Callahan, Mary Ann Callahan
0 Comments| October 27, 2017

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So. We’ve already experienced one Bitcoin fork. It went more or less smoothly. Some people even benefited from it. For example, users of CEX.IO, who gained additional funds, due to the successful coin splitting done by the exchange, itself.

The next fork is to occur in less than a month. However, there is a lack of articles and any information on the Internet that, in simple terms, explain SegWit2x and clarify all the vague facts and occasions about it. So, if you wish to sort things out in the latest cryptocurrency news without drilling into the technical aspects - you’ve found the right one.

A brief backstory

SegWit and Bitcoin Cash

You probably know what lies behind this massive fork story. It is Bitcoin’s scalability problems. SegWit is a soft fork that turned out to be the best solution to the issue. The best for most, but not for all. This provoked a hardfork so that, eventually, Bitcoin Cash entered the scene.

Bitcoin was split

After the hardfork, there were “two Bitcoins”:

  1. The original Bitcoin (the one with the SegWit upgrade);
  2. Bitcoin Cash.

In the community, Bitcoin Cash is mostly considered as yet another Altcoin. Still, every Bitcoin holder had an opportunity to split the coins, which meant that he would acquire the same amount of the Bitcoin Cash coins as the amount of Bitcoins he had before the hardfork. The process of coin splitting was quite complicated for a regular person and could even end up losing their funds. So, those who held Bitcoins on exchanges that accepted the hardfork were probably in a better position.

What is SegWit2x?

First of all, SegWit2x is a hardfork. Although it is different from Bitcoin Cash fork, at least, because it doesn’t contradict with initial SegWit. At this point, you may have some misunderstandings, but we’ll clear them up just now.

Basing on the name, you can guess that SegWit2x is an upgrade of the already-existing SegWit. In plain language, it’s a “combination” of the SegWit soft fork activated in August and the hardfork that is to happen three months later.

Click to enlarge

If you closely look at the table, you can catch yourself on one very important idea…

Bitcoin Core has nothing to do with SegWit2x

Moreover, it is against the upcoming hardfork. The team has already stated that their client will never support the fork by the SegWit2x Bitcoin chain (aka B2X). It is important to note that Bitcoin Core nodes hold more than 70% of the network. It’s up to everyone to decide whether it is right or not, but these guys definitely have enough right and power to, somehow, influence the subsequent events.

So, why 4 Bitcoins?

First, you should remember that although the possibility of the hard forks is high, ‘4 Bitcoins’ is only a guess-work. But, let’s count them together:

  1. Bitcoin (The primary network with the SegWit softfork);
  2. Bitcoin Cash (A corresponding hardfork of the initial Bitcoin blockchain, occurred on August 1st, 2017);
  3. B2X (A potential SegWit2x Bitcoin hardfork that is to happen 3 months after SegWit);
  4. Bitcoin Gold (“Friendly” hardfork that can potentially occur on October 25th).

What is Bitcoin Gold?

“Don’t be tangled”: That’s what is better to tell the one, who has barely understood the whole thing about SegWit2x and then finds out that there is another fork to occur.

The development team of Bitcoin Gold calls it a ‘friendly’ fork. Unlike Bitcoin Cash, Bitcoin Gold developers see it as a complementary or additional Bitcoin chain and do not claim to obscure the primary Bitcoin.

The main idea is to make mining more decentralized than it is with Bitcoin, where the market is “monopolized” by Chinese Asics. The mining of Bitcoin Gold will be carried out on the same algorithm as Ethereum and Zcash - EquilHash, which means that it will be available for GPUs to mine.

In fact, the fork is expected to occur on October 25th, which is even earlier than SegWit2x.

What should you expect from all these forks?

We already gained some experience after August 1st, but as you can see the current situation is a bit more complicated, because we now have two hardforks to wait on. Yet, it’s not a doomsday, because every problem is an opportunity in disguise. And here’s why...

Coin splitting will also be carried out this time, which is definitely good news. The only thing you should contemplate on as a regular Bitcoin holder is to make sure that your coins are split the right way. Unfortunately, this process is quite problematic and risky for a non-technical person. And, any misstep can make you lose your funds. That’s why, it is better to find a trustable cryptocurrency exchange and make sure that the team behind this platform cares about splitting the coins of its users.

Given that one hardfork is already left behind, it is better to take note of the exchanges that have already succeeded with this. For example, CEX.IO not only provided their users with BCH coins at the time of the 1st August hardfork, but also launched Bitcoin Cash trading on the platform.

CEX.IO has already issued a statement on the upcoming events and ensured that the existing users will be at no risk of losing anything on their platform and receive new coins in case of split. CEX.IO is also planning to launch trading of the coins for USD, EUR, GBP and BTC shortly after the split takes place. Note that the deposits and withdrawals of BTG and B2X will be disabled at the initial stages. In case of B2X fork CEX.IO may also stop the deposits and withdrawals of BTC for some time.

No matter the forks, there will always be only one true Bitcoin and, the community is the one to choose which. Everybody’s got their own opinion about that. Basing on the recent experience, it’s unlikely that any forked chain will outrun the original Bitcoin. However, it is better to be prepared for any outcome and always think positive on the situation.


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