Low reliability of the Lightning network shown in a recent study


Lightning Network is payment protocol that is created to solve the current problem that Bitcoin has in terms of scalability. The network can allow almost instant, scalable and low cost transactions. It has been accepted positively by the crypto community but a study done by Diar has revealed that “the reliability of successful routing a payment on the Lightning Network is still quite low” as since the release date in January the protocol has a hard time processing large amounts.

The study has pointed out that the number of nodes and fund capacity has been increasing but the reliability of a successful payment routing has stayed low. Each node contains on average four channels open and with each channel capacity being 20 dollars on average. When looked at transactions the probability of a successful payment of a few dollars is 70 percent, while success rate of a payment of no more than 200 dollars is 1 percent.

One other important issue with the Lightning Network is that in order for to parties to participate in a transaction, they both have to be online at the same time.

The study says:

“The lack of liquidity between nodes, and the online factor, has led to the concentration of capacity to only a few large nodes. Ten of the larges Lightning Network nodes (0.4% of total nodes) currently have 53% of the network’s capacity while the remaining 2500 nodes have 47%.”

A mobile wallet created for the Lightning Network was launched in April available for Android users that let Lightning payments happen that will only cost a fraction of the standard BTC network fee and confirm instantly.