It is the eve of one of Bitcoin Cash’s most contentious hard forks, and early signs are suggesting that miners plan to run the Bitcoin SV implementation of Bitcoin Cash rather than the Bitcoin ABC implementation broadly used by the network today.
While Bitcoin Cash has gone through multiple hard forks, the upcoming one has been marked by the lack of a clear community consensus. As we previously covered, there are currently three major implementation proposals for the Bitcoin Cash network: Bitcoin ABC, and Bitcoin SV, and Bitcoin Unlimited
- Bitcoin ABC will add new features such as smart contract abilities, oracle services, and scaling improvements to the Bitcoin Cash network
- Bitcoin SV will replace Bitcoin ABC’s scripts with its own and expand Bitcoin Cash’s block size from its current 32MB to a maximum size of 128MB
- Bitcoin Unlimited will implement both changes of Bitcoin ABC and Bitcoin SV enabling miners to vote for the features they want
Despite the seeming Goldilocks appeal of the Bitcoin Unlimited plan, the two proposals at the center of the debate are Bitcoin ABC and Bitcoin SV.
In this piece, we will map out the major companies in the Bitcoin Cash ecosystem and their positions in the debate. We will also take a look at the current futures prices for pre-forked bitcoin cash ABC and bitcoin cash SV tokens to get a sense of the market’s support. (In essence, the futures markets allow us to look at how the market values the two would-be tokens after the fork is completed.)
Blockchain analytics site, Coin.Dance, is estimating that between 74%-80% of bitcoin cash miners are signaling support for Bitcoin SV. At the time of this writing, four of the top 10 mining pools by hash rate — Coingeek, SVPool, BMG Pool, and Mempool — have signaled support for Bitcoin SV. Together, the foursome has accumulated more than 73% of the Bitcoin Cash hash rate.
Business SupportWhile proponents for Bitcoin SV appeared to have won over the mining community, a majority of businesses other than miners appear to support Bitcoin ABC. Below we charted out the current positions these companies are taking.¹ One interesting thing to note is that while so many of the major businesses are either neutral or supporting ABC, that enthusiasm doesn’t necessarily represent the power in the debate. As noted above, the companies supporting Bitcoin SV dominate the all-important hash rate on the network.
We also charted out the top 10 exchanges by bitcoin cash trading volume, according to CoinMarketCap, and their implementation support. Of these 10 exchanges, one is expressing direct support for ABC, five are leaning ABC, and zero are expressing support for SV. Note that we are defining “Leaning ABC” based on whether these exchanges have linked the roadmap set out by bitcoincash.org. The details in the roadmap are compatible with Bitcoin Unlimited and Bitcoin ABC, but not Bitcoin SV.
Lastly, we take a look at the prices for the two implementations. There are currently two major exchanges offering futures trading for the Bitcoin Cash pre-forked tokens: Poloniex and Bitfinex. Let’s first take a look at Poloniex:
The summary table is as follows:
As The Block previously reported, Bitcoin Cash SV was originally trading at 21% of Bitcoin Cash ABC’s price. On Poloniex, Bitcoin Cash SV is now trading at ~88% of Bitcoin Cash ABC’s price. The sharp rise suggests sentiment is shifting quickly toward Bitcoin Cash SV, which had little traction early on.
Now let’s look at the data for Bitfinex:
The summary table is as follows:
On Bitfinex, Bitcoin Cash SV is now trading at about 86% of Bitcoin Cash ABC’s price. Data from these two exchanges are showing that the market is currently valuing Bitcoin Cash ABC higher than Bitcoin Cash SV. However, as we mentioned, just under a week ago bitcoin cash SV was trading at 21% bitcoin cash ABC’s price. Bitcoin cash SV’s market value has grown by 60% relative to bitcoin cash ABC’s market value since then.
¹DigiFinex, OpenBazaar, Yours.org, Rockter, and Guarda have not announced their positions in the debate.