The Speedy Trial of Taproot has been initiated on Bitcoin.
On Saturday, May 1st, the last adjustment of Bitcoin’s difficulty took place, kicking off the Taproot Speedy Trial.
Therefore the first activation phase for what is in fact the largest Bitcoin update in years has been initiated. As of today, miners who want to adopt Taproot can signal their support by including special data in the blocks they mine, called “signal bits”.
If 90% of the blocks mined during one of the current or upcoming eras of the Bitcoin difficulty include the Taproot signal bit, the update will be activated permanently in November this year.
Many miners, however, have already pledged their support for Taproot, so reaching the 90% threshold is probably only a matter of time. It is estimated that it could happen as early as the second half of May.
Currently, according to the taproot.watch website, the blocks containing the signal bit are still few, but seem to be growing. The current epoch of Bitcoin’s difficulty (the 338th) is expected to end between 13 and 15 May, and from then on any epoch could be the one to cross the threshold.
The Taproot update of Bitcoin
The aim of Taproot is to change the way Bitcoin scripts operate. In particular, combining Taproot with Schnorr signatures will increase the level of anonymity of on-chain transactions, and improve complex transactions.
The Taproot update will make it possible to publicly hide the moving parts of a complex Bitcoin transaction, which can then appear to observers as a normal single transaction.
In addition, again in combination with Schnorr signatures, Taproot could also increase efficiency in the execution of complex transactions, because it will reduce the amount of data to be recorded in the blockchain, while also increasing the number of transactions that can be recorded per block and reducing fees.
What is expected is that Bitcoin will experience significant improvements in terms of privacy, scalability and security, and encourage multi-signature solutions.