Bitcoin Halving has been the talk of the town as of late, but what is it, and what does it mean for the average Bitcoin user and Miner? First, the short answer: Bitcoin Halving occurs in intervals of 210,000 Blocks, and results in the fixed reward Miners received when they mine a block dropping by 50%, or half — hence the term Halving.
Let's dive a bit deeper. Now, Bitcoin Miners are awarded 12.5 BTC ($142K) if they win a Block Reward. When the next Bitcoin Halvening occurs, however, that reward will drop down to 6.25 BTC ($71K). The Bitcoin Halvening after that will see the prize decreased down to 3.125 BTC ($35K). See what's happening? They're ever-halving — sort of.
But Why Does Bitcoin Halving Happen?
You see, Bitcoin Halving will only occur up until the last very last Bitcoin is mined in 2140. Until then, it will continue to take place, combating inflation one 210,000th Block at a time. The intention here is to combat Bitcoin from being inflated as it's distributed, as described by anonymous Bitcoin inventor Satoshi Nakamoto in the following email:
"The fact new coins are produced means the money supply increases by a planned amount, but this does not result in inflation. If the supply increases at the same rate the number of people using it increases, prices remain stable. If it does not increase as fast as demand, there will be deflation and early holders of money will see its value increase."
So how does halving the Block Reward do that? Well, that drop in the Block Reward symbolizes a drop in the amount of Bitcoins produced per day. Right now, 1800 are released day in, day out, but come the next Halvening that figure will dip down to just 900. And that's what will keep Bitcoin from inflating — just as Nakamoto intended.
When Is The Next Bitcoin Halvening?
The next Bitcoin Halvening is expected to occur before the end of May 2020 (that's the one that will slash the reward to 6.25 BTC). That date is subject to change, though — it all depends how fast we reach the next 210,000th block. If the rate of transactions surges, there's a chance we could reach it come April, and if it drops, it could be June.