Litecoin upgrade just around the corner: LTC price turns upwards
The little Bitcoin brother Litecoin is about to undergo a cosmetic intervention. Mimblewimble will disguise LTC transactions in the future – at least optionally. With this trick, the developers want to avoid a possible delisting. Whether the upgrade will come, however, is not yet in the bag.
With all the hype about Bitcoin, DeFi and NFT record proceeds, one long-established coin has fallen somewhat behind in the media in recent weeks: Litecoin (LTC). Yet the performance of the Bitcoin Compass crypto veteran is currently showing a steep growth curve. Within seven days, Litecoin has risen by 15 per cent and, with a price increase of 6.4 per cent as of today, Friday 12 March, is the biggest gain among the ten largest cryptocurrencies. The upcoming upgrade that the LTC community has been waiting for for months might not be entirely blameless.
Litecoin meets Mimblewimble
We’re talking about Mimblewimble, a privacy-focused blockchain protocol that obfuscates transaction histories. The upgrade has been undergoing a stress test on the Litecoin testnet for three months. The results are positive that the targeted deadline of 15 March for the completion of the code can be met.
Mimblewimble developer David Burkett’s recent water status report in a forum post sounds suitably cautiously optimistic:
‚I guess I’ll drag this out a bit more and start a community testnet sometime after the code is finished this month. There’s still a lot of work to do before the code review can be submitted, but I remain confident and committed to meeting the 15 March target.
He says that because the „wallet design just didn’t mesh well with the existing LTC wallet“, the developer was somewhat behind schedule. Specifically, the difficulty lay in the „Coin Selection Logic“, i.e. the smooth transfer of Litecoin to extension blocks „MWEB“ running parallel to the mainchain. The simultaneous processing of LTC and MWEB coins in bundled transactions had „kept the developer awake for weeks“.
To cut a long story short, I rewrote about 80 percent of the code on the MWEB wallet to support MWEB transactions with mixed coins. I did toy with the idea of running the testnet in parallel without this new functionality, but rewriting the wallet more than burned up all the buffer I had left in the timeline. The time I would have spent supporting the testnet would certainly have delayed the deadline for completing the code on 15 March.
Anonymous by request
By integrating Mimbelwimble, the Litecoin Foundation is killing two birds with one stone. First, the upgrade should improve the scalability of the network. By deleting transaction histories and thereby compressing transfers, the extension blocks have „the ability to scale better than Litecoin and Bitcoin“, according to the Foundation. This helps „increase Litecoin’s transaction throughput“.
In addition, and this is the more obvious side effect, LTC transactions become anonymous. Mimblewimble turns Litecoin into a privacy coin, at least if desired. The feature is optional and runs separately from the Litecoin mainchain on the Mimblewimble sidechain.