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It is written that the supply of Bitcoin units is limited to 21 million and that this limit will approximately have been reached around the year 2030.

But is there an actual "last Bitcoin" (or "last Satoshi" for that matter) that will have been mined one day? Or will mining continue forever after producing smaller and smaller fractions?

14

Theoretically yes, but that moment is so far in the future it is likely that some other events such as new currency technology will surpass bitcoins.

However, mining will not stop. Mining is the security backbone of bitcoin, and it will continue because it will still be profitable to mine. Miners will be paid fees from existing bitcoins with every transaction instead of a reward of newly created bitcoins.

  • 2
    once transaction fees become usual and the major part of a miner's reward, the process should really be renamed into "auditing" or the like. – herzmeister Aug 31 '11 at 18:44
  • I find it hard to concieve that mining will be profitable far in the future. To have a significantly large enough of user base and the value to be high enough to make mining worthwhile. By 2030 I guess the number of people using bitcoins would have to be around 50 x what it is now and value would have to be over 4 x what it is now, (estimated from current rates and difficulty, this math may be way off lol). lets hope this is the case. – MaxSan Sep 2 '11 at 9:43
  • @MaxSan Hashing can be profitable at any user & transaction volume level. At CURRENT difficulty/price/fee% you would need transaction volume to be 200x current level for mining to be profitable. If fees relative to transactions rose to say 0.5% it would only need to be about 20x current level. Of course difficulty can fall or price rise. There are infinite combinations of those three cariables which allow profitability. Example: price/difficulty rises 5x fold, transaction volume rises 10x with fees 0.5 of transactions would results in total fees roughly equal to current block reward. – DeathAndTaxes Oct 14 '11 at 13:04
  • Market-based transaction fees don't scale. I read that even Gavin has expressed his doubt that they will. – Shelby Moore III Mar 28 '13 at 1:41
  • How can such a FUD have 9 upvotes, wtf? – o0'. Jun 5 '13 at 11:41
2

By 2140, the final bitcoins will be made. After 2140, no more bitcoins will be made, which means it's only trading and buying things wiith bitcoins.

  • True, but you should really mention transaction fees. – o0'. Jun 5 '13 at 11:41

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