History of Bitcoin

Bitcoin logo

The first cryptocurrency – Bitcoin, was released in 2009 by a pseudonymous developer/s by the name of Satoshi Nakamoto. The true identity of this person or group has never been confirmed.

Bitcoins ticker symbol is BTC (however XBT is also used by some digital exchanges).

Price & Key Milestone History of Bitcoin (BTC)

Many will have heard stories of somebody paying for a couple pizzas around a decade ago with a large quantity of bitcoins, now called Bitcoin Pizza Day. Bitcoin has captured the imagination of many since 2009, even though the true identity of it’s founder, Satoshi Nakamoto, has never been confirmed.

Like all new and disruptive technologies, it has attracted both praise and scrutiny since its inception, however with mainstream adoption looking closer and closer as each year passes, it seems Cryptocurrency (including Bitcoin) is here to stay. The history of Bitcoin is fascinating from several aspects, including adoption by leading companies, halving dates and their impact, major bull and bear markets, and the rise of this most known Cryptocurrency.

Below is a Bitcoin timeline that tracks key moments in history, from its inception to today.

Bitcoin Timeline

2007
January 1 2007

Satoshi Nakamoto – Pseudonym (Alias) for the Developer of Bitcoin

Although there is no formal confirmation, it is believed that Satoshi Nakamoto began working on the Bitcoin concept in 2007.


However, Satoshi Nakamoto is a Pseudonym (Alias) for the developer/s.  To date, the true identity of this person or group of developers has never been revealed or confirmed.

2008
August 15 2008

Updating and Distributing Encryption Keys Patent Application

Neal King, Vladimir Oksman and Charles Bry file US patent No. 20100042841 titled “Updating And Distributing Encryption Keys“.

 

While the patent now has a status of “Abandoned”, and all three deny association with Bitcoin, there many similarities to the functioning of Bitcoin. Another coincidence appears that 3 days after this patent was filed, the bitcoin.org web site was then registered.

August 18 2008

Bitcoin.org is Registered

Bitcoin.org

Bitcoin.org is registered. The domain was registered at Anonymous Speech, a site that still exists today and allows users to anonymously register domain names and now accepts Bitcoin.

October 31 2008

“Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System” Paper Posted

Bitcoin: Peer-to-peer electronic cash system

A paper authored by Satoshi Nakamoto titled Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System was posted to a cryptography mailing list.

The paper details methods of using a Peer-to-peer network to generate what was described as “a system for electronic transactions without relying on trust”.

2009
January 3 2009

Genesis block of Bitcoin Mined

Bitcoin network comes into existence with Satoshi Nakamoto mining the genesis block (block number 0) of Bitcoin.

Embedded in the coinbase of this block, which can contain any arbitrary data, was the text:
The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks.
 

The text refers to a headline published on the 3rd January 2009 in The Times, and is considered both a timestamp of the genesis date and a “dig” at the financial system instability at that time caused by Fractional-reserve banking.

January 12 2009

The First Bitcoin Transaction

The first transaction of Bitcoin currency, in block 170, takes place between Satoshi and Hal Finney, a developer and cryptographic computer scientist. Sadly, Hal passed away on the 28th August 2014 due to complications of ALS.

October 5 2009

An Exchange Rate is Established

New Liberty Standard publishes a Bitcoin exchange rate that establishes the of value a Bitcoin at US$1 = 1,309.03 BTC, using an equation that includes the cost of electricity to run a computer that generated Bitcoins.

2010
May 22 2010

10,000 BTC Spent on Pizza (Bitcoin Pizza Day)

Bitcoin pizza day

The first, real-world transaction using Bitcoins takes place when a Jacksonville, Florida programmer, Laszlo Hanyecz, paid 10,000 bitcoins for two pizzas.

 

The deal came about when Hanyecz posted on the BitcoinTalk Forum that he would give 10,000 bitcoins to anyone who brought him pizza. Someone in the UK took him up on it, ordered two pizzas from Papa John’s in Hanyecz’s area, paid $US25 for them, and got the 10,000 bitcoins in exchange.

 

At the time, Bitcoin was worth approximately 0.003 cents each. So the 10,000 BTC was theoretically worth about US$30.
The deal is legendary with the 22nd of May each year now known as Bitcoin Pizza Day.

July 12 2010

1000% Bitcoin Price Increase

The price of Bitcoin experienced a 1,000% increase from 0.008 to 0.08 US dollars, on the 12th July 2010, helping the new currency to attract more attention.

July 17 2010

Mt. Gox Bitcoin Exchange Established

Mt. Gox (an abbreviation for Magic: The Gathering Online Exchange) is established by Jeb McCaleb, as one of the first Bitcoin exchanges online.

 

The Cryptocurrency exchange holds significant history for multiply reasons, including during 2013 it had become the largest exchange in the world, handling approximately 70 percent of all BTC trades globally (by volume). Sadly, the exchange became the subject of scandals, hacks and the infamous loss of 744,408 of their users’ Bitcoin through a hack that reportedly ran over several years.

 

On the 28th February, 2014, Mt. Gox exchange filed for bankruptcy in Tokyo and closed.

August 15 2010

Value overflow incident

In Aug 2010, a bug in Bitcoin’s source code was exploited by someone who to this day remains anonymous. The anomaly was in block # 74638 and quickly spotted on the Bitcoin Talk forum by Jeff Garzik.

 

The bug that caused this “value overflow incident” resulted in 184 billion Bitcoins being created. Ultimately a fix, to change the consensus rules that rejected output value overflow transactions was released in just five hours. There was no significant impact on the price of Bitcoin.

December 8 2010

First Mobile Bitcoin Transaction

The first portable-to-portable transaction of Bitcoins occurs when ribuck sends doublec 0.42 BTC using Bitcoind.

2012
November 15 2012

WordPress Starts Accepting Bitcoin Payments

WordPress.com announces Pay Another Way: Bitcoin

 

At WordPress.com, our mission is making publishing democratic — accessible and easy for anyone, anywhere. And while anyone can start a free blog here, not everyone can access upgrades (like going ad-free or enabling custom design) because of limits on traditional payment networks. Today, that changes: you can now buy WordPress.com upgrades with bitcoins.

November 28 2012

Bitcoin halving 2012 – The 1st halving of Bitcoin

Halving Bitcoin

Halving Number: the 1st Bitcoin halving
Date: 28th November 2012
Block Number: 210,000
Block Reward: 25 BTC
BTC % Mined: 75%
Price on Halving Day (USD): $12.35

2013
January 1 2013

Bitcoin Trading at around US $13.50

The digital currency began 2013 trading at around US $13.50 per Bitcoin.

February 8 2013

Coinbase Customers Trade $1 Million Worth of Bitcoins in 30 Days

Coinbase, a platform for buying and selling digital currency, announces for the first time, their customers have bought or sold more than $1 million (USD) worth of Bitcoins (at over US $22 per Bitcoin) in the past 30 days.

2014
September 12 2014

First CFTC Approved Bitcoin Financial Product

TeraExchange launches an Over-the-counter (OTC) swap based on the price of Bitcoin. This swap is the first time a U.S. regulatory agency, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), approves a Bitcoin financial product.

2015
January 1 2015

Bitcoin Trading at around US $315.00

The digital currency began 2015 trading at around US $315.00 per Bitcoin.

February 4 2015

More than 100,000 Merchants Accept Bitcoin

Bitcoin accepted here

The number of retailers accepting the cryptocurrency Bitcoin passes 100,000 as major companies now accepting Bitcoin payments include Dell, Microsoft, Twitch, Wikipedia, Expedia, Greenpeace and PayPal.

2016
July 9 2016

Bitcoin halving 2016 – The 2nd halving of Bitcoin

Halving Bitcoin

Halving Number: the 2nd Bitcoin halving
Date: 9th July 2016
Block Number: 420,000
Block Reward: 12.5 BTC
BTC % Mined: 87.5%
Price on Halving Day (USD): $650.53

September 7 2016

Deloitte Unveils Bitcoin ATM in Their Toronto Office

Deloitte installs Bitcoin ATM

The Bitcoin world received an exciting surprise as it was announced that the Deloitte office in Toronto installed its very own Bitcoin automated teller machine (ATM).

October 1 2016

Number of Bitcoin ATMs Doubles in 18 Months

Bitcoin kiosk

The growth in the number of Bitcoin automated teller machines (ATMs) between March 2015 and September 2016 more than doubled.

 

In March 2015 there were 353 Bitcoin ATMs, which is a substantial number given Bitcoin had not gone mainstream at that time. By the end of September 2016, this number had increased by over 118% to 771 ATMs worldwide.

2017
January 1 2017

Bitcoin Trading at around US $1000.00

The digital currency began 2017 trading at around US $1,000.00 per Bitcoin.

April 12 2017

Bitcoin Market Cap Rises by Over $1 billion on News from Japan & Russia

During 2017’s meteoric rise in Bitcoin’s price, the BTC Market capitalization rose by over $1 billion on news that Japan passed a law to accept Bitcoin as a legal payment method, and Russia made moves to regulate cryptocurrency.

December 17 2017

Bitcoin 2017 Bull Market High Price

2017 Bitcoin BTC/USD price chart

Bitcoin (BTC) experiences a massive bull market during 2017 with price ultimately reaching around US $19,600 per Bitcoin, over 1,900% increase in price since the 1st January 2017 and generating inevitable discussions of a “Bitcoin Bubble”.

2018
December 15 2018

Bitcoin 2018 Bear Market Low Price

2018 Bitcoin BTC/USD price chart

Bitcoin (BTC) experiences a deep bear market throughout all of 2018 with price ultimately reaching a bear market low around US $3,222 per Bitcoin on 15th December 2018 (Source: CoinMarketCap).

 

This was a decrease in price by over 80% since the 17th December 2017 high, and this bear market earned the term “Crypto Winter”.

2020
May 11 2020

Bitcoin halving 2020 – The 3rd halving of Bitcoin

Halving Bitcoin

Halving Number: the 3rd Bitcoin halving
Date: 11th May 2020
Block Number: 630,000
Block Reward: 6.25 BTC
BTC % Mined: 93.75%
Price on Halving Day (USD): $8,821.42

Bitcoin Current Price

$16,968.28
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