Coinbase Hears You! Phasing in Long-Awaited Software Update to Reduce Those Fees

The world’s largest crypto exchange announces software update in a bit of good news that should be welcomed since it’s been plagued with so many bad news events as of late.

Coinbase has been lambasted on so many fronts lately that it’s difficult to keep track of them all.

However, Tuesday it tweeted about how it is handling one of the issues that has caused the most woes for its customers. That issue is in regards to the transaction fees customers pay when sending Bitcoin via the exchange.

We go over the details here.

Too much to handle

Over the past few weeks, complaints about the transaction fees have really ramped up. For months, Coinbase’s team of engineers have been trying to figure out how to make transaction processing speeds faster. Coinbase was under pressure after being inundated with complaints that its exchange was inefficient, and that the transaction fees were ridiculously too high.

SegWit addresses these issues by taking some of the work off the main network, notes Bloomberg. In December, Coinbase customers were made aware that this software update was coming.

In a blog post, Coinbase tried to explain why there was a problem. Dan Romero, vice president and general manager of Coinbase wrote:

“Many of our customers have been asking for SegWit, and we’re working out a way to implement this upgrade safely. We store billions of dollars worth of bitcoin on behalf of customers and any change to our infrastructure is done with significant planning and consideration for the security and stability of our platform.”

SegWit update ready to roll

This tweet says it all about the software update:

Our engineering team has finished testing of SegWit for Bitcoin on Coinbase.

We will be starting a phased launch to customers over the next few days and are targeting a 100% launch to all customers by mid next week.

— Coinbase (@coinbase) February 20, 2018

The hope is that the upgrade will help reduce the size of transactions, which improves the overall transaction capacity of the Bitcoin network. This upgrade should also help reduce the fees customers pay on bitcoin transactions, Romero said.

One thing to note about this update relates to customers sending Bitcoin Cash.

In another blog post written on Feb. 13, Zach Abrams, a member of Coinbase’s product team, said:

“While SegWit should help reduce fees, once we begin rolling out this change, if you incorrectly send Bitcoin Cash (BCH) to a Bitcoin (BTC) address, your funds will no longer be recoverable. To help protect customers from accidentally sending funds, we will be adding the below screens to all of our Bitcoin Receive flows.”

And then there’s this

As Coinbase was tweeting about the software update, it was also tweeting about fraudsters setting up Twitter handles in trying to fake being the exchange.

For that matter, Coinbase tweeted:

We’ve seen an increase in the number of fraudulent Twitter accounts claiming to be an official Coinbase account.

The only official accounts for Coinbase:@Coinbase @CoinbaseSupport

— Coinbase (@coinbase) February 20, 2018

Last, but not least, is the debacle over some customers being charged multiple times when they used their Visa cards on the exchange. Visa and Worldpay issued a joint statement on Feb. 16, in which they not only take responsibility, but also state they will fully refund each customer.

Here’s an excerpt from that statement.

“Worldpay and Coinbase have been working with Visa and Visa issuing banks to ensure that the duplicate transactions have been reversed and appropriate credits have been posted to cardholder accounts. All reversal transactions have now been issued, and should appear on customers’ credit card and debit card accounts within the next few days.”

Those who continue to have problems should contact their card issuing bank.

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