2023: Litecoin’s most prolific & exciting year!

In 2023, Litecoin demonstrated why it’s a currency fit for the modern world.
As the bull returned, Litecoin broke record after record. All-time-highs were smashed for network, payment, transaction, wallet and mining activity.

In keeping with tradition, and in celebration of the Litecoin community’s dedication and tireless efforts, we look back on the year’s major milestones and achievements.

And, given 2023 was Litecoin’s most exciting year to-date, there’s plenty to celebrate!
So we’ve taken the liberty of breaking this piece into three sections: Milestones | Projects | Partnerships & Events

Thank you for all your support this year!
To an even bigger 2024!

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Milestones

Litecoin was never intended to replace Bitcoin, but to complement it. Designed - as its name suggests - to be a ‘lite’ version of Bitcoin, often considered ‘digital gold’. More than any other year, 2023 demonstrated the pivotal role Litecoin plays as a  ‘digital silver’, fit for modern world use cases. Remittance payments, micro-transactions, buying goods et al. 

“We wanted to make a coin that is silver to Bitcoin's gold.”  
- Charlie Lee, aka 'coblee', on bitcointalk.org (9th October, 2011).


Number #1 for Payments

Litecoin is the most utilized cryptocurrency for payments on BitPay, the world’s leading cryptocurrency payment processor.

Litecoin is the most utilized by users of BitPay - the world's largest crypto payment processor. (Source: BitPay)

This is hugely significant milestone, as it fulfills Charlie Lee’s vision for Litecoin to be used like a currency, to buy goods and pay for services.

“The point of a currency is to buy goods. If it's just to exchange for another currency, then it's doom(ed) to fail.” 
- Charlie Lee, 3rd October 2011.

Thanks to BitPay, tens of thousands of companies across the globe now accept Litecoin online and in-store. Purchases using $LTC have ranged from $29 Microsoft subscriptions, to luxury items like a $359,000 Richard Mille watch. 

Alongside Microsoft are hundreds of businesses accepting Litecoin online and in-store. Among them are leading names like Ralph Lauren, Chess.com, AMC Theatres, Camper & Nicholsons, Namecheap, Flight Centre, Mecum Car Auctions and Twitch! Here’s the full list of who accepts Litecoin payments on BitPay. 

If you run a business, why not look into using Litecoin for payroll? Or expanding your prospective customer base by accepting the world’s leading crypto for payments?Get in touch via the Litecoin Foundation website, or find out partners we recommend.

206 million low-cost, fast transactions (& counting!)

This year saw Litecoin effortlessly process its 200 millionth transaction on 22nd of December.

In 2023 alone, the network processed over 67 million transactions; nearly doubling last year’s 39 million transactions - a record at the time!

It was 14th November that Litecoin first processed 1 million transactions in a day! Since, the network just keeps breaking records (which, coincidentally and somewhat ironically, has made us sound like a broken record). Almost daily!

8th December: 1.44 million active addresses! An ATH and 3 days of over a million per day.
19th December: 1.37m active addresses.
20th December: 1.44m active addresses. 

When considering Litecoin use cases like remittance payments, micro-transactions and paying for goods, the cost (or fee) to make the transaction is important. Despite 2023 seeing unprecedented network activity, Litecoin's average daily transaction fee was never more than $.017. Consistently miniscule fees and fast confirmation times make Litecoin a reliable currency. Coupled with 12 years of uninterrupted network activity and opt-in confidentiality offered by MWEB, Litecoin is one of, if not the most, well-rounded currency for the modern world. An ideal complement in its role as ‘digital silver’ to Bitcoin; which is a superior store of value, just like gold.

Litecoin's highest average daily transaction fee for 2023 was only $0.017. (Source: IntoTheBlock)

Reliability and consistency of a currency -  and how much it costs to transact in - is important. Knowing that, regardless of how busy Litecoin’s blockchain is, the average transaction fee will be less than two cents and settled in minutes anywhere in the world, is paramount for a robust modern currency. 

Imagine wanting to send $50 to a loved one halfway across the globe to mark the holiday season. If you sent that $50 on 20th December 2023, the average fee for making that transaction would have varied wildly depending on the currency chosen:
Bitcoin: $31.67
Ethereum: $11.46
Litecoin: $.001582.

Unsurprisingly, Litecoin’s low-cost, near instantaneous transactions have led to record levels of adoption in 2023.

20th Dec '23: Bitcoin's average transaction fee was $31.67 (Source: IntoTheBlock)
20th Dec '23: Ethereum's average transaction fee was $11.46 (Source: IntoTheBlock)
20th Dec '23: Litecoin's average transaction fee was $0.001582. (Source: IntoTheBlock)


ATHs for New, Active and ‘Hodler’ Addresses

One day in May (has a nice ring to it), Litecoin hit 800,000 daily active addresses - making it the most active blockchain in the world. And things were just heating up! On 8th December the number of active Litecoin addresses hit 1.4 million, with a remarkable 847.7k new addresses on the same day!

Litecoin address activity on 8th December 2023 (Source: IntoTheBlock)

Only 12 days later, on 20th December, active Litecoin addresses hit their current all-time-high of 1.44m active Litecoin addresses. The network was (cough) lite-ing, with active Litecoin addresses more than that of Bitcoin (791k) and Ethereum (541k) combined.    

Of the more than 9.3 million Litecoin addresses with a balance (as at 27th November), IntoTheBlock describes 5+ million of those addresses as ‘hodlers’. Or, in more lay terms, Litecoin addresses whose assets have not moved in a year or more. In fact, the average time Litecoin is held in a wallet is 2.4 years! That’s a community of silver-plated diamond hands right there.

Since 18th December Litecoin’s ‘New Adoption Rate’ has been above 80% each day, hitting an all-time-high of 88.93% on 20th December. The indicator reflects the percentage of Litecoin’s total activity attributed to new addresses making their first transaction. As the oldest surviving altcoin, seeing such an influx of new users to the Litecoin network is exciting. And a testament to the tireless  efforts of the Litecoin community and Foundation volunteers in driving awareness and adoption of the currency. 

Litecoin's "New Adoption Rate" hit 88.93% on 20th December 2023! (Source: IntoTheBlock)

Litecoin’s third successful halving

A triumphant moment, Litecoin’s third halving took place on 2nd August 2023. At this point, the reward to miners went from 12.5 Litecoin to 6.25 Litecoin. 

Hard-coded into Litecoin, and taking place roughly every four years, these halvings serve to increase the scarcity of Litecoin and ensure it remains an inflation-resistant currency. This is achieved by cutting mining rewards - and the subsequent rate of new Litecoin entering into circulation - in half.  

In the lead up to Litecoin’s previous reward halving events in 2011 and 2015, there was an increase in mining activity. Followed by a sustained fall in mining activity. However, this year’s halving in August bucked the trend. While hashrate and difficulty reached all-time-highs around the halving, interest in Litecoin mining didn’t stop there. And records continued to be broken!

If you’d like to learn more about Litecoin reward halvings - and why they’re such an important event - here’s a 3-min explainer:

Mining For Digital Silver Hit ATHs

Litecoin's mining difficulty and hash rate saw record highs in 2023, before and after the halving event in August.

Mining difficulty - a measure of how hard it is for miners to find the right hash and add a new block to Litecoin’s blockchain -  hit an all-time-high of 26.38M in the lead up to the halving on 2nd August. So too did Litecoin’s hashrate. The measure of computational power per second required for mining or processing transactions, Litecoin’s hash rate  reached an all-time high of 816.67 terahashes per second (TH/s) on 31st July. Miners probably thought they wouldn’t see all-time-highs like this again. Or at least not until the next halving, some four years in the future.

But on December 14, 2023, Litecoin’s mining difficulty surged again to an all-time high of 30.03M. Litecoin’s hash rate also surpassed August’s previous all-time-high, hitting 907.87 TH/s on 15th October. It seems that - four months on from the successful halving - sentiment and appetite for mining Litecoin is stronger than ever!

Projects

14 million Extra-Ordinal Inscriptions!

Litecoin Ordinals are flying (Source: @oldschoolcryptobro via Medium)

Ordinal inscriptions were brought to Litecoin on 2nd May, after community members released LTC-20, ported from BRC-20. By September the number of Litecoin Ordinals had flown past 6 million. But the extra-ordinal activity didn’t stop there.

On 14th November, more than 1.32 million inscriptions were made on the Litecoin network - the highest number in a single day. At the time of writing, 31st of December, more than 14 million ordinals have been inscribed on Litecoin.

Litecoin community members - @indigo_nakamoto, @anthonyonchain, @rodarmor, @raphjaph & @lukewrightmain- deserve an extra-ordinal thanks and congratulations for their efforts bringing ordinals to Litecoin. If you want to get in on the action, the newest version of Litecoin Ordinals (0.12.3) is now available on Github.

LTC Got Visual with the launch of Litecoin.Space

Months in the making, June saw the launch of Litecoin Space: a modern Litecoin block explorer with a focus on mempool visualization and an extensive developer API. Inspired by Bitcoin’s long-standing ‘mempool.space’, Litecoin Space is a resource, tool and gateway to exploring Litecoin’s blockchain! Learn more about the Litecoin Foundation initiative here

MWEB’s Popularity, No Longer A Secret

A little over 18 months since its activation, MWEB - Litecoin’s opt-in confidential transaction innovation - has seen stable uptake! With its balance consistently above 20,000 LTC for months, with hundreds of daily MWEB transactions. And MWEB’s currency balance - on June 2nd - hit an all-time high of 364,661LTC!

An LTC-Dedicated Crowdfunding Platform

One of the coolest community initiatives of 2023 was Lite.Space - a platform created by Indigo Nakamoto for supporting your favorite Litecoin project!

Show your support for Litecoin community and Foundation projects, including Litecoin Core, Litewallet, Lite Ordinals or  initiatives in their infancy. Or, if you’ve got a Litecoin project, community or activity that needs funding, why not apply for a grant? Check out all the details here.

Signature ‘Halving’ Edition Cards (~ 10 Still Available!)

To celebrate Litecoin’s 3rd successful halving, our good friends at Ballet minted 500 limited edition Block Cards. These collector’s items are encased in 50g of .999 silver and loaded with an entire Litecoin block reward. Yep, 6.25 Litecoin mined straight onto the card by Litecoin Pool! There are still - remarkably - a handful of these collector’s items available, so snap yours up quickly.

Signature Halving Edition Blockcards (with a handful still available!)

All proceeds from the Block Cards will be donated to the Litecoin Foundation, helping further the development, awareness and adoption of Litecoin!

 

Litecoin Foundation Partnerships & Events

First Proof-of-Work Summit

On 26th and 27th September the Litecoin Foundation and ETC Cooperative joined forces to host the first ‘Proof-of-Work Summit in Prague, Czech Republic. 

Prague proved a fitting host for the Summit, being the  birthplace of the world’s first Bitcoin mining pool, hardware wallet and Bitcoin cafe. The Summit was a wild success, teeming with hundreds of attendees from all over Europe, North America and even Australia! 

Keynote speeches from Jameson Lopp, Charlie Shrem and Caitlin Long were a hit, and ensured that the event wouldn’t be a one-off. So stay tuned for details of the sophomore Proof-of-Work Summit early next year.


Events On (Almost) Every Continent!

The Litecoin Foundation had a truly global presence this year with events and keynote speeches in Melbourne Australia, Prague, Dubai, Mexico and Hong Kong. And, to celebrate Litecoin’s 12th Birthday, community members and Foundation volunteers blew the candles out on a cruise ship in the Bahamas! This global footprint is a true testament to the dedication of our decentralized volunteers.

Speaking of global… will we be seeing you in Nashville for the 2024 Litecoin Summit? Stay tuned for details on the Litecoin Foundation Event page.

Venmo & Litecoin Hit It Off!

In May, popular mobile payment app, Venmo, made on-chain Litecoin transactions available to its 60+ million customers. In early December 2023, Venmo reported a 15% increase in new users, with many citing the addition of Litecoin as a key factor in their decision to sign up for the app. Venmo also stated that ~20% of its user base has used the Litecoin feature since May!

Litecoin transaction volumes on Venmo have also been impressive. In Q3 of 2023, Venmo reported that Litecoin transactions accounted for ~10% of the platforms’ total transaction volume, with the average Litecoin transaction being $200. Venmo users and Litecoin are clearly a match made in App Store heaven.

Litecoin Gets Bakkt In

Last month, NYSE-listed Bakkt made Litecoin available to its 700,000+ traditional investors! Investing.com cited Litecoin’s unprecedented adoption and daily activity wallet addresses challenged Bitcoins’ as reasons for the listing.

“In response to Litecoin's growing prominence and increased user activity, Bakkt, a digital asset management platform, announced today the inclusion of Litecoin in its enhanced custody service offerings. This move is part of Bakkt's broader platform expansion and reflects the company's confidence in Litecoin's potential and robust security features.” - Investing.com.

Yet another positive indicator of traditional investors’ appetite for Litecoin, and a sign that institutional money could start pouring in! 

LTC’s Big in Philippines

In the middle of this year, the Litecoin Foundation led a partnership with Philippines exchange, Coins.ph.  With the exchange’s peak monthly user count around 4 million, and its market share by Monthly Active Users (MAU) is at 54%, Coins.ph provided a significant opportunity for Litecoin to continue its dominance in the ASEAN region. 

Ranked 2nd out of 146 countries in Chainalysis’ “2022 Global Crypto Adoption Index”, the Philippines is a significant and relatively untapped market for Litecoin. With global adoption as a focus, the Foundation will look to further LTC's awareness in the Philippines and the ASEAN region more broadly.

The foundation teamed up with Coins.ph to do a Learn and Earn promotion that garnered well over 17,000 participants, with 10 winners receiving a limited edition, PSGC-graded block card from Ballet Wallet, containing freshly mined blocks of 6.25 LTC per card as a prize.

New Communities to Join in 2024!

If you haven’t already found them, there are new community-led Litecoin / Litecoin Foundation platforms worth checking out!
- Coinmarketcap: Litecoin’s 520,000 subscribers makes it one of the biggest communities on CMC. Shout-out to Foundation Director, Jay Milla, for leading this vibrant community;
- Bluesky: on your way to the moon, check the Litecoin Foundation out on BlueSky;
- Threads: the Foundation has been active on Instagram for some years, but if you’re a Threads fan and want up-to-date Litecoin news, come give us a follow!

2024 promises to be another incredible year for Litecoin. Your support, contributions and donations (time, attention and/or monetary) are much appreciated. Let’s continue to work as a community to break records for our much-loved decentralized currency, Litecoin.

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