There are still a lot of unknown factors when it comes to the upcoming Bitcoin Cash hard fork. With numerous camps emerging, one has to wonder how many chains will exist after the fork itself completes on November 15th. So far, the hashrate statistics are quite telling, although that only tells one part of the story at this time.
Bitcoin Unlimited (Status Quo)
Four different “versions” of Bitcoin Cash may exist after the hard fork completes. This is primarily because there are many conflicting opinions on what the future of this altcoin will entail. In the case of Bitcoin Unlimited (status quo), it pertains to network nodes who will simply not upgrade to the new rules under any circumstances. It has an estimated 4% of the network hashrate, although this number has been on the decline for some time now.
The “real” Bitcoin Unlimited will effectively adhere to the new network rules. Its main client of this “chain” will be BUCash 1.5, which follows the Bitcoin ABC chain by default combined with the latest node implementations from Bitcoin XT, bitprim, bcash, and bchd. As such, it seems safe to assume this hashrate – which is estimated at 20% of the total network’s mining power – will be added to the Bitcoin ABC chain when everything is said and done.
This may effectively skew the numbers a bit, although it is important to put things into their proper perspective. As the listing officially confirms it follows Bitcoin ABC, there is no reason to think its node operators will suddenly oppose this vision by the developers. At the same time, nothing has been set in stone just yet, as there are a few days to go until the fork itself occurs.
It appears there are two “main” Bitcoin Cash implementations which need to be looked at right now. Bitcoin ABC is, for all intents and purposes, the main chain of Bitcoin Cash. Most users have followed the Bitcoin ABC way of thinking for the past year, although that situation will come to change in the near future, by the look of things.
According to current statistics, Bitcoin ABC will have 25% of the network hashrate, which is not exactly impressive. When adding the hashpower from Bitcoin Unlimited to this number, things start to look a bit better. However, as this chain already follows Bitcoin ABC, it seems unlikely the total number will be pushed much higher when everything is said and done. As such, it seems Bitcoin ABC will have a maximum of 30% of the network hashrate, which is not exactly promising.
The Craig Wright vision for Bitcoin Cash goes by the name of Bitcoin SV. It has the majority of estimated hashrate support right now, with the figure ranging anywhere from 60% to 75%. As such, it will presumably become the dominant chain among miners, even though it has less economic support at this time. That would certainly be an interesting development first and foremost, though not necessarily a positive one for Bitcoin Cash itself.