Breaking News
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your experience. Save up to 40% More details

Bitcoin Taproot upgrade and all you need to know

CryptocurrencyJun 17, 2021 07:00AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
Bitcoin Taproot upgrade and all you need to know

On June 12, Bitcoin’s Taproot upgrade received enough mining support to lock-in activation. Taproot is undoubtedly Bitcoin’s most significant improvement since the “Segregated Witness (SegWit)” upgrade in 2017.

The governance vote for Taproot conformed to parameters set by “Speedy Trial,” which requires the support of at least 90% of the blocks mined in a designated two-week period to begin the activation process.

As of last week Saturday, 1,815 out of the 2,016 blocks mined had indicated their interest to support the upgrade. With the 90% benchmark met, the Taproot upgrade has been scheduled for November. The upgrade is set to introduce a plethora of upgrades to the Bitcoin network, including improved privacy, scalability, multi-signature wallets, and security.

That being said, let’s take a deeper dive into what Taproot is and how it could potentially transform Bitcoin.

What is Taproot?Privacy, security, and scalability are three very core issues every blockchain needs to address. While Bitcoin has performed remarkably in the aspect of security, it is an open secret that the leading blockchain falls short on the scalability and privacy scales. Taproot is expected to address these issues.

The upgrade was first proposed by former Blockstream CTO Gregory Maxwell in 2018. It was developed by several Bitcoin Core contributors, including Anthony Towns, Andrew Poelstra, Johnson Lau, Jonas Nick, Pieter Wuille, Tim Ruffing, and Maxwell himself. In October 2020, Taproot was merged to the Bitcoin Core library following a pull request created by Wuille.

Taproot will improve Bitcoin’s scripts, making them potentially more compact, private, and flexible. Consequently, transactions on the Bitcoin network will be able to use more complex functionalities such as multi-signature and timelock releases.

To a large extent, these features are already on the Bitcoin network. However, without Taproot anyone would be able to detect the use of these complex functionalities. Taproot essentially makes it possible to “cloak” all the parts of a transaction that involves these features. So, even if a complex transaction uses any of these features, it will still appear like a single transaction that is indistinguishable from a regular transaction. This could significantly boost the privacy of Bitcoin transactions.

The Taproot upgrade is more or less two upgrades rolled into one. It includes the introduction of Schnorr signatures.

What is a Schnorr Signature?To many cryptographers, the Schnoor signature scheme is one of the best in the field for its simplicity and efficiency in creating short signatures. It is relatively fast to verify and does not suffer from malleability.

With regards to Bitcoin, the most notable benefit of the signature is arguably its “linear math” feature that enables a new class of smart contracts, where devs can embed a variety of spending conditions by tweaking a signature.

The Schnorr signature scheme was developed by German mathematician and cryptographer Claus Schnorr. Although he protected his algorithm under a patent for several years, the patent officially expired in 2008.

Despite its benefits, Bitcoin’s pseudonym founder Satoshi Nakamoto adopted the Elliptic Curve Digital Signature Algorithm (ECDSA). At that time, ECDSA was already widely used, compact, open-source, and well-understood.

The introduction of Schnorr through Taproot may mark the beginning of a new generation of signatures for Bitcoin and other blockchains.

For clarity, one of the major advantages of Schnorr signatures is the ability to tweak signatures. Leveraging cryptographic tricks such as Merkle trees, users will be able to embed multiple keys inside a complex Bitcoin transaction while producing a single output or address. Put differently, the signatures of multiple users involved in a transaction can be aggregated into one single Schnorr signature (aka signature aggregation).

What Taproot means for Bitcoin?As early said, the Taproot upgrade will introduce several major improvements to Bitcoin’s privacy and scalability. Other added benefits include lower transaction fees, a reduced amount of data to be stored on the blockchain, and more wallet functionality.

What’s next?With the activation locked in, the next phase of activation is a five-month waiting period. Node operators and miners will have the next few months to update their software to the newest version of Bitcoin Core, Bitcoin Core 0.21.1, which contains activation logic for the upgrade.

When Bitcoin finally reaches the specified “block height” 709,632 in November, Taproot will be activated. All the relevant proposals associated with the upgrade will automatically kick in. Upon activation, all upgraded nodes will be able to accept transactions made using the upgrade protocol.

Continue reading on BTC Peers

Bitcoin Taproot upgrade and all you need to know

Related Articles

ZKSwap’s V2 mainnet is set to go live tomorrow
ZKSwap’s V2 mainnet is set to go live tomorrow By Cointelegraph - Jul 27, 2021

Decentralized cryptocurrency exchange ZKSwap has announced that its upcoming V2 mainnet will go live on July 28 via the Layer 1 Ethereum mainnet. A layer 2 launch is planned to...

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
Post also to:
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.
Continue with Google
Sign up with Email