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I am aware that Satoshi Nakamoto is the author of the paper that originated Bitcoin and the creator of the original bitcoin client. However, I often hear the term Satoshi as if it was a monetary unit.

What is a Satoshi?

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4 Answers 4

up vote 57 down vote accepted

A Satoshi is the smallest fraction of a Bitcoin that can currently be sent: 0.00000001 BTC, that is, a hundredth of a millionth BTC. In the future, however, the protocol may be updated to allow further subdivisions, should they be needed.

Further examples of units

  • 1 BTC = 1,000 mBTC (millibitcoin)
  • 1 BTC = 1,000,000 μBTC (microbitcoin)
  • 1 BTC = 100,000,000 Satoshis
  • 1 mBTC = 100,000 Satoshis
  • 1 μBTC (microbitcoin) = 100 Satoshis
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10  
Note that it's possible that future protocol versions will introduce amounts smaller than a Satoshi, if deemed required by the community. I'm not sure how likely this is. bitcoin.stackexchange.com/questions/122/… –  ripper234 Aug 30 '11 at 23:02
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@eMansipater It might be worth editing your answer just a touch to ensure that people don't think that there is a limit to the number of decimal places possible. –  Gary Rowe Sep 9 '11 at 10:35
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It's Michael's answer, but I updated it anyway. –  eMansipater Sep 10 '11 at 12:08
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Isn't one BTC a HUNDRED million Satoshis? –  Blaisorblade May 11 at 23:51

1 mBTC = 0.001 BTC

1 mBTC = 100,000 Satoshis


1 uBTC = 0.000001 BTC

1 μBTC = 100 Satoshis


1 Satoshi = 0.00000001 BTC

100 Satoshis = 0.000001 BTC

1,000 Satoshis = 0.00001 BTC

10,000 Satoshis = 0.0001 BTC


1 BTC = 100,000,000 Satoshis

1 BTC = 100,000 μBTC

1 BTC = 1000 mBTC

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A Satoshi is a one hundred millionth of a Bitcion.

Bitcoins are delimited to eight decimal places so even if (when?) Bitcoins are worth $1,000,000 each, you can still do penny transactions.

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This does not provide an answer to the question. To critique or request clarification from an author, leave a comment below their post - you can always comment on your own posts, and once you have sufficient reputation you will be able to comment on any post. –  Lohoris Mar 12 '13 at 12:19
    
@Lohoris Just for my sake, can you clarify why this isn't an answer? It's not as comprehensive as the other answer, but it's definition does seem to match the definition of a Satoshi provided by the other answer, at least numerically (since the smallest unit could change in the future). –  user3930 Jul 21 '13 at 15:42
    
@JohnBensin it doesn't add anything to the accepted answer, and it has been posted much later. Also, it includes a pointless "if (when?) Bitcoins are worth $1,000,000 each". –  Lohoris Jul 21 '13 at 15:54
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@Lohoris I agree. I downvoted because I felt that it didn't add anything to the question. The speculation may have just been an extreme/hypothetical example, but I agree that it doesn't add any new information. –  user3930 Jul 21 '13 at 16:25
    
@Lohoris -1 on your comment. "Not adding anything" to prior answers doesn't constitute "not an answer". Clarifying that Satoshi is intended to be analogous to the penny if BTC attains sufficient valuation is addressing the question "What is a Satoshi?". I wish I could downvote your comment. –  Shelby Moore III Aug 25 at 0:00

A Satoshi is 0.00000001 BTC and currently the smallest transaction unit.

If a Satoshi was equivalent to one penny, a microBTC would be equivalent to one dollar, and one BTC would be equivalent to 1,000,000 dollars.

With one BTC on the order of $1,000 USD, a Satoshi is equivalent to .001 penny

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3  
-1 No new information in comparison to the previous answers. –  Murch Jan 22 at 13:36
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@Murch -1 on your comment. He words it different and different readers respond differently to different wordings. He apparently explains it the way he thinks about it. Not all readers have a high enough IQ to see all wordings as equivalent, thus there is value in multiple answers. See also my comment to Lohoris. Vertical screen and database space are not scarce resources. The Knowledge Age is a post-scarcity antidote to Malthusian propaganda. I tried to obviate your down vote, but another person down voted after I wrote this comment. Democracy is the LEAST common denominator. –  Shelby Moore III Aug 25 at 16:29
    
@ShelbyMooreIII We disagree: You find it useful, I don't. That's quite alright though. –  Murch Aug 26 at 18:41
    
@Murch Yeah. Btw, elsewhere I up-voted your question and the chosen answer. Peace. –  Shelby Moore III Sep 11 at 9:34
    
+1 A nicely worded answer in terms people can relate to. –  BruceHill Oct 8 at 14:35

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