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Author Topic: Can/Will Transactions Ever Be Processed Faster Than Every 10 Minutes?  (Read 5919 times)
gigabytecoin
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April 08, 2011, 06:59:55 AM
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As that aspect of Bitcoin severely limits it's "world currency status" potential. (If that is the direction that Bitcoin is heading or being pushed towards, that is.)

I would imagine that one transaction occurring every second would suffice for using Bitcoin as a replacement for the debit/credit/cash system.

If transactions can only be processed every 10 minutes: Bitcoin will be good for purchasing intangible goods and storing a value imho.
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April 08, 2011, 08:15:30 AM
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Can/Will Transactions Ever Be Processed Faster Than Every 10 Minutes?

Blocks will never be created faster.

As that aspect of Bitcoin severely limits it's "world currency status" potential.

Not really. You don't have to wait for blocks, you just have to check that no double spending transaction was published at the same time. That way a transaction is verified in seconds.
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April 08, 2011, 08:54:57 AM
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When wallets become more widespread and trustworthy, the wallets could transfer money within themselves or to another wallet instantaneously though AFAICT.

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April 08, 2011, 12:40:01 PM
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Gluskab - You're probably referring to eWallets like MyBitcoin.com - you're correct that mybitcoin users can instantaneously send money to other mybitcoin users, and in the future it's likely that similar, interoperable services will arise.

see also, https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Myths#Point_of_sale_with_bitcoins_isn_t_possible_because_of_the_10_minute_wait_for_confirmation
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April 08, 2011, 12:42:43 PM
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Gluskab - You're probably referring to eWallets like MyBitcoin.com - you're correct that mybitcoin users can instantaneously send money to other mybitcoin users, and in the future it's likely that similar, interoperable services will arise.
I guess he spokes of private key transfer from one wallet to another => instant tranfer.

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April 08, 2011, 12:46:21 PM
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Gluskab - You're probably referring to eWallets like MyBitcoin.com - you're correct that mybitcoin users can instantaneously send money to other mybitcoin users, and in the future it's likely that similar, interoperable services will arise.
I guess he spokes of private key transfer from one wallet to another => instant tranfer.

keypair transfers will probably be possible in the future, but they are not a secure way to move bitcoin.

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April 08, 2011, 12:51:41 PM
 #7

As that aspect of Bitcoin severely limits it's "world currency status" potential.

Huh.  One-to-three day transfer times doesn't seem to have hurt the dollar much: http://www.depositaccounts.com/blog/inside-look-at-ach-transfer-speeds-at.html

"Instant" payments with world currencies is an illusion created by your bank of financial institution based on how much they trust the person or institution sending the money.  There is nothing stopping bitcoin financial institutions from using the same trick, and I think as the bitcoin economy grows and companies start to trust each other instant transfer times will happen.

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Alex Beckenham
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April 08, 2011, 02:16:30 PM
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"Instant" payments with world currencies is an illusion created by your bank of financial institution based on how much they trust the person or institution sending the money.

It shows how much the Big 4* in Australia 'trust' each other... since there's no instant transfers between them even though it would be a trivial thing to set up. Amazing that it can still take 3 days in 2011.

*
National Australia Bank
Commonwealth Bank
ANZ
Westpac

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April 08, 2011, 02:24:16 PM
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"Instant" payments with world currencies is an illusion created by your bank of financial institution based on how much they trust the person or institution sending the money.

It shows how much the Big 4* in Australia 'trust' each other... since there's no instant transfers between them even though it would be a trivial thing to set up. Amazing that it can still take 3 days in 2011.

*
National Australia Bank
Commonwealth Bank
ANZ
Westpac
Try 3 to 5 working days in the UK.

It typically takes three working days to transfer money between two different banks, assuming both banks are in the same "country" (e.g. both are in England, or both are in Scotland). If one was a Scottish bank (let's say the Clydedale Bank) and one was an English bank (let's say Yorkshire Bank) it would usually take a minimum of four working days.

And now the punchline: Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank are both subsidiaries of National Australia Bank.

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April 08, 2011, 02:55:57 PM
 #10

And now the punchline: Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank are both subsidiaries of National Australia Bank.

So, I should be able to send instantly between Australia and Scotland.

How to set it up isn't even a secret... Western Union and Moneygram are obviously very capable.

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April 08, 2011, 02:58:46 PM
 #11

And now the punchline: Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank are both subsidiaries of National Australia Bank.

So, I should be able to send instantly between Australia and Scotland.

How to set it up isn't even a secret... Western Union and Moneygram are obviously very capable.

I wouldn't count on it, and would recommend checking with NAB first (I assume you're sending from Oz?) That said, my experience of transfers between AUD and GBP is very positive - quicker than GBP transfers within the UK. The UK banking system seems to be more broken than the international banking system (if you can believe that...!)

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Alex Beckenham
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April 08, 2011, 03:41:25 PM
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And now the punchline: Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank are both subsidiaries of National Australia Bank.

So, I should be able to send instantly between Australia and Scotland.

How to set it up isn't even a secret... Western Union and Moneygram are obviously very capable.

I wouldn't count on it, and would recommend checking with NAB first (I assume you're sending from Oz?) That said, my experience of transfers between AUD and GBP is very positive - quicker than GBP transfers within the UK. The UK banking system seems to be more broken than the international banking system (if you can believe that...!)

I was kidding. If I asked NAB to do an instant transfer, they just laugh at me.

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April 08, 2011, 04:21:15 PM
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And now the punchline: Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank are both subsidiaries of National Australia Bank.

So, I should be able to send instantly between Australia and Scotland.

How to set it up isn't even a secret... Western Union and Moneygram are obviously very capable.

I wouldn't count on it, and would recommend checking with NAB first (I assume you're sending from Oz?) That said, my experience of transfers between AUD and GBP is very positive - quicker than GBP transfers within the UK. The UK banking system seems to be more broken than the international banking system (if you can believe that...!)

I was kidding. If I asked NAB to do an instant transfer, they just laugh at me.
Ah, with you now. I suspect they could do it instantly, but they'd want a second mortgage and your first born child.

Slightly related: many, many years ago I had a communication problem with an Irish bank clerk. I wanted to know how long it would take for my cheque to clear. Eventually she snapped and explained that in Ireland they had these things called "computers" and as a result cheques cleared instantly. We're just phasing out cheques in the UK, just as it becomes possible for cheques to clear in less than three days - I suspect the UK has moved to steam-powered abacuses... :-)

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April 08, 2011, 04:34:58 PM
 #14

Amazing that it can still take 3 days in 2011.

I worked as an architect for the biggest subsidiary of Erste Bank Group (Europe), so I'm pretty familiar with the banking systems. I can say banks _want_ instant payments, but those systems are usually so old and inflexible that it isn't easily possible. I especially mean daily batch processing of payment queues between internal systemts etc. Thanks to their historical architecture, support for online transfers  == completely new implementation of core systems. So we're talking about milions or even bilions euros.

Younger banks are using newer technologies (obviously), so it's pretty common that small players have much faster payment processing.

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April 08, 2011, 04:51:44 PM
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I think there is something to be said for longer transactions. Banks really don't take 10 days to process a check from out of state or another country. It is done as soon as it is posted. They just hold the money in escrow to make sure everything is on the up and up. Then they give you the money. Of course they get to keep the interest from that escrow, which batched together over a large bank can be significant.

Personally I thing the decentralization and p2p nature of trades that take 10 minutes will provide a more stable system that is not inclined to be taken advantage of by "day traders" in the ForEx market. Today small differences in the Bid Ask price can be taken advantage of by instant trading. A difference of a couple pennies can be turned into a sustained flow of cash.

A person that has 10,000 shares of a stock with a Bid Ask difference of .02 slowly such our $2 per 100 shares, or $200 - $100 dollars for commissions = $100 profit. All within 10 minutes. So on an average workday, he could tons of profit.

It is the "New" buy low, sell high with instantaneous transactions.

Personally I don't like looking at the screen every second, so I look for Bid Ask difference of .10¢ or higher.

But if it took 10 minutes for transactions to be processed, this would not be feasible. Which I think is good for stability.

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April 08, 2011, 05:02:31 PM
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Without major modifications the average time between blocks will be 10 minutes. This does not mean that the average time from you making a transaction to it getting it's first confirm will necessarily be 10 minutes. This is because in the future when the fixed block reward is less important and fees are more important hashing power supplied will be variable and the more fee tx that are queued up they faster they get confirmed. There will probably be some time of day and day of week effects too, but maybe only minor. You can even have some control by offering a huge fee that will get previously marginally unprofitable miners to switch on.

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April 08, 2011, 08:50:02 PM
 #17

Is there a time stamp of when the transfer was initiated?

Garrett Burgwardt
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April 08, 2011, 09:39:31 PM
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I believe the client timestamps every transaction it receives at the time it first gets it.
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April 08, 2011, 11:57:00 PM
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I believe the client timestamps every transaction it receives at the time it first gets it.
No. The only timestamps in Bitcoin are in the blocks.

I was wrong - the client does add a timestamp to transactions it puts into its wallet. I was only looking at transactions as they appear "on the wire" - i.e. being broadcast just after they're created.

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April 13, 2011, 12:37:40 AM
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So is it possible to independently verify when someone initiated a transfer from the client?

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