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What are the types of bitcoin addresses?


Nov 10, 2022

What are the types of bitcoin addresses?

There are several types of addresses on the Bitcoin network. They can be easily distinguished by the prefix – symbols at the beginning of the address:

  1. Legacy (P2PKH): starts with the number one. Example: 1N4QBZG6LSXUXU2MDUGFZXWMA7DO8ayl.
  2. Script (p2sh): starts with the number 3. Example: 3J98T1WPEZ73CNMQVIECRNYIWRNQRHWNLY. (P2WPKH): starts with a combination “BC1Q“. Example: BC1QFG9T7FWN0ATN4YF9SPCA5502VK8DYHQ8A9AQD8.
  3. Taproot (P2TR): It begins with a combination “BC1P“. Example: BC1PEU5HZYJ8CNQM05LE6AG7UWRY0YSMTF3V4UUXV3VQHVSATCA8SS2VUWX.

What is Bitcoin address in Legacy format?

Legacy address is the very first standard of address in the Bitcoin network proposed by Satoshi Nakamoto. Otherwise, it is called P2PKH (Pay to Public Key Hash), since it requires the recipient a signature calculated from the private key, and a public key.

Legacy type address consists of three parts:

  • prefix;
  • generated as a result of the use of the SHA256 and Ripemd algorithms to the private key, public key;
  • check sum.

Both incoming and outgoing translations from such addresses support all wallets and applications working on the Bitcoin network. The main minus of Legacy addresses is high commissions. They also have a low drill speed of the control amount and larger weight in QR codes.

What are the differences between Script (P2SH) from Legacy?

Script address appeared in a Bitcoin improvement proposal in January 2012 thanks to the chief scientific employee of Bitcoin Foundation Gavin Andresen.

They have the same structure as Legacy addresses, but begin with numbers 3. Such addresses suggest that when transferring funds, the recipient must have a script suitable for the hash script. This feature allows you to reduce the commission for the transfer, shift the commission costs for the recipient and create addresses with a multi -signature.

What are the advantages of Segwit format?

In the spring of 2016, the developers Peter Wella and Greg Maxwell in the BIP-0173 update proposed a new type of address called Bech32. It is also called Segregated Witness (Segwit) or P2WPKH (Pay to Witness Public Key Hash).

The main advantage of Taproot addresses for their owners is the lowest commissions compared to other formats and cheaper payments on the Lightning Network network.
However, Taproot has a big drawback – this species so far supports only a small number of wallets. In mid -August 2022, only 0.56% of all outgoing translations in the Bitcoin network took place from addresses of this type.

The gradual distribution of the new standard is the norm for a decentralized bitcoin network, which is used by a huge number of applications and users. A similar situation was observed after the implementation of Segwit.

Is it possible to translate bitcoins between addresses of different formats?

Today Legacy, Script and Segwit are completely compatible among themselves. That is, between them can be freely carried out both incoming and outgoing translations.

The situation is somewhat different with Taproot. Most of the non -cocked wallets used support transactions to the address of the BECH32M type, but they have no functions to create such an address. In addition, not all cryptocurrency exchanges allow you to send funds to Taproot address. The current situation with the introduction of Taproot in popular bitcoin purses can be viewed on the Bitcoin Wiki website.

P2TR address transactions are supported by many Bitcoin blocks used, such as Blockchair or Blockstream.

Answers to frequent questions

What is Bitcoin address?

Bitcoin address is a unique identifier with which the user can send and receive cryptocurrency. Each BTC address is unique and generated by complex encryption mechanisms. Serves as an analogue of a bank account on the Bitcoin network.

Which format of the bitcoin-wallet is https://gagarin.news/news/bitcoin-city-and-el-salvadores-new-bitcoin-splurge/ better?

As of 2022, we recommend using Segwit – it is a modern standard, allows you to pay low commissions for transfers on the Bitcoin network and is supported by most wallets. In the future, this format is most likely replacing Taproot.

How to choose a type of bitcoin address?

Often the Bitcoin storage application allows you to select the address format at the stage of creating the address.

How many characters in the address of bitcoin-wallet?

Legacy address for the first cryptocurrency consists of 34 characters, Segwit addresses (Bech32) most often include 42 signs, Taproot (BECH32M)-62 symbols.

How many bitcoin addresses?

According to Glassnode, in August 2022 there were more than 38 million addresses with a non -equal balance in the Bitcoin network. About 1 million bitcoin addresses are sent or receive daily transactions daily.

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