Nick Chong · 1 week ago · 2 min read · Insights via Grayscale Investments
Bitcoin · Ethereum › Technology
Ethereum’s Average Transaction Fees Temporarily Surpassed Bitcoin’s for First Time Ever
For the first time in their inception, Ethereum’s average transaction fees outstripped Bitcoin’s. Ethereum however, has since resumed its place as the more economical blockchain.
As reported in a tweet by @JZay, Coin Metrics data revealed the momentary overtaking occurred July 1, 2018:
— JZay (@BTCOlN) July 17, 2018
At one point, the average Ethereum transaction cost $5.40 to send — more than seven times that of Bitcoin’s $0.75. Calculated by total fees divided by total transactions, the average Ethereum fee has descended to $0.37 at time of press.
The increasing fees of more than 2350% in a 24-hour window sparked a chorus of disdain amongst the platform’s users. In reference to early July’s congestion, one user complained:
Here we go again. Ethereum gas price is 90 GWEI right now. 90. Imagine paying 90 times more in transaction fees. if we can't provide a single stable blockchain for dapps at $400B market cap, are we doing anything at all?
— Varun Deshpande (Nuo) (@thebitsian) July 14, 2018
Fees, Fire, and Fury
While the average Ethereum transaction fee remained below $1 since January 2018 — the peak of Ethereum’s usership, July has seen the platform brace a series of operational fiascos.
Chinese exchange FCoin may be solely responsible for early July’s eruptive fee hike. As previously reported by CryptoSlate, the exchange was accused of using a highly consumptive coin-voting process — one that incited an Ethereum-wide bottleneck.
While the congestion appeared to be short-lived — average fees returned to below the $1-mark on July 8th— a recent bout of gas price manipulation saw costs ballooning once more when a single contract monopolized 40% of the network’s resources.
Traditionally, transaction costs have fallen under the umbrella of Ethereum’s scalability challenges — an issue perhaps to be solved by the long-awaited Casper PoS upgrade or another of Buterin’s architectural initiatives. As developers contemplate the most robust solution, what may of most pressing concern is the evident ability of a few of the platform’s users to affect the masses.