In search of more privacy and security, bitcoin underwent the most significant upgrade to the protocol in four years on Sunday (14). Called Taproot and previously supported by 90% of miners, the soft fork will also ease the use of smart contracts in transactions involving bitcoin.
On Tuesday morning (16), the Taproot upgrade completed more than 50 hours live with the adoption of 55% of the bitcoin nodes. According to CoinDesk, Taproot was developed “to improve bitcoin security, privacy, and efficiency”. In addition, Taproot can give transactions more speed by lowering the amount of fees charged.
Since 2017, the bitcoin network has not gone through a major upgrade that directly affects the scalability of the digital currency. That year, developers introduced Lightning Network, to solve the scalability problem and SegWit, which allowed for data segregation by removing the digital signature from the transaction record.
Taproot was developed to create more privacy in the information contained in transactions. With the upgrade, the Schnorr Signatures protocol has been integrated into the network and will allow the combination of multiple signatures in a single entry. The upgrade in the network is also expected to increase the adoption of smart contracts with bitcoin.
Using the Merkelized Abstract Syntax Tree (MAST) concept, smart contracts on the bitcoin network will be “more efficient and private”, according to Taproot.watch.
“Taproot is a softfork to the Bitcoin network that will improve the scripting capabilities and privacy. It enables something called MAST, which can help make smart contracts more efficient and private by only revealing the relevant parts of the contract when spending. It can also improve privacy of the Lightning Network by making channels look like regular bitcoin transactions, if the Lightning implementations choose to adopt Taproot. ”
Taproot was activated at block 709,632 and, in just two days, reached 55.12% of adoption. In total, currently, 32,703 bitcoin nodes are operating through the upgrade.