Blockstream Says New Satellite Allows For Bitcoin Payments Without Internet And Supports LN
Blockstream CSO Says New Satellite Allows For Bitcoin Transactions Without Internet And Supports LN
The blockchain company Blockstream has leased the fifth satellite a few days ago. The main intention is to broadcast the Bitcoin blockchain to the Asia Pacific Region. There is already coverage around Africa, Europe, and all the Americas. With this satellite, it is possible to be connected to the Bitcoin network without having an internet connection.
At the same time, Blockstream has also launched a new API that would enable the satellite to transmit encrypted messages. At the same time, the scaling solution Lightning Network (LN) is also supported. That means that users would be able to enjoy from micropayments and low transaction fees.
During a conversation with Cointelegraph, Samson Mow, the CSO of Blockstream, informed about the new satellite and the coverage possibilities that it allows for. He mentioned that in several developed countries, internet connection is a basic service that most of the people have access to. However, there are other regions and countries around the world that do not have widespread access to the internet.
Without having internet, it is not possible for a computer to synchronize with the Bitcoin blockchain. This means that it is not possible for this computer to be part of the network. This is why the satellite provides a solution for many areas around the world.
On the matter, he commented:
“All a user requires to receive Blockstream Satellite broadcasts is a low-cost standard satellite dish. So if they are running a full node and mainly receiving payments, they don’t need an internet connection at all. To broadcast a transaction they could send it over an SMS bridge or a mesh network. Blockstream Satellite allows for users to get creative and build new solutions around the service.”
If there is a network blackout around the world, these satellites play an important role since it could potentially be used as backup protection. If there is an area that has lost internet connection for a period of time, satellite connection would allow it to have access once again without relying on internet connections.
At the same time, Mow explains that the satellite connection is cheaper than other methods to keep the network synchronized. The satellite extends basic Bitcoin access to several regions and it also lowers the costs of operating a node. Receiving data from Blockstram’s Satellite has no cost.
The new satellite will also allow users to send encrypted messages and use the Lightning Network. Bitcoin has experienced a congested network during the last months of 2017 and the beginning of 2018. Because of this reason, developers have been working in order to launch the Lightning Network and help Bitcoin scale.
At the same time, users will be able to send totally private messages that contain market information and that will be totally secured. This is a cheaper way to transact Bitcoin reaching more places around the world and without an internet connection.