Ending the year on a bang, we’re launching support for bitcoin cashouts to native SegWit (bech32) addresses.

Bech32 addresses start with bc1 and come as an upgrade to the original bitcoin p2pkh and p2sh addresses that start with a 1 and 3, respectively.

Bech32 address examples
- bc1qw508d6qejxtdg4y5r3zarvary0c5xw7kv8f3t4
- bc1qrp33g0q5c5txsp9arysrx4k6zdkfs4nce4xj0gdcccefvpysxf3qccfmv3

What is SegWit?

SegWit, short for Segregated Witness, is an upgrade to the Bitcoin protocol that allows for more efficient block size management. The Bitcoin network mines one block about every 10 minutes each with a fixed maximum block size. This limits the amount of transactions that can be processed by the network.

SegWit rearranges transaction data to make better room of the available space in a block, effectively reducing transaction sizes down 20–30%. The upgrade required new address types in order to distinguish between original transactions and those following SegWit.

What this means for you

If this sounds like technobabble then you’re completely unaffected. All cashouts to original Bitcoin addresses will function as usual.

If you’re using an upgraded wallet with native SegWit support, you will now be able to cashout directly to a bech32 address from your Shakepay wallet.

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About Shakepay

Shakepay is the easiest way for Canadians to buy/sell bitcoin and pay their friends. We’re on a mission to create open access to building wealth.