I tried to explain what wallet address is in comic strips.
I explained what wallet address is and how wallet addresses may be different in the different wallets.
The idea of a wallet address is similar to your bank account number or a credit card number. It is a part of the public key that is revealed to the public so whoever wants to send cryptocurrency into your wallet can have the address to do so. The address contains numbers, upper-case and lower-case letters, and is generally between 32-34 characters long. Since the address is case-sensitive, it is better to copy and paste the wallet address rather than manually typing out the wallet address to avoid errors and possibly missing from receiving funds.
Multiple Types of Bitcoin Addresses
As Bitcoin continues evolving, its new types of addresses got developed and introduced so they can reduce the amount of information necessary to spend a received transaction. Of course, each wallet address is interoperable. You can roughly guess how old the address is.
Legacy Address (P2PKH)
It was introduced in 2009 and it is the most expensive address type. The address starts with the number 1. However, this type of address is not good to continue using since it is not compatible with other new cryptocurrencies as the technology has progressed. However, if someone got this type of address, you may determine those people are in the crypto space at the beginning of the time. To notice the technology difference is that P2PKH is a direct hash from your private key address.
This type of wallet address starts with code bc1. The idea is to hash the public key into the address to prevent reverse engineering of the revealed public key to reach the private key even though it is impossible in theory. It is a security upgrade of the legacy address to prevent
Pay to Script Hash (P2SH)
This type of wallet address starts with the number 3. It was introduced around December 2017. This is a second generation of the address. The technology has been improved with a script that involves certain spending conditions which stay hidden from the sender opposites to direct hash from the private key address to increase its security. It is later used in SegWit and reduces transaction fees roughly by 26% compared to a legacy wallet address.
Native SegWit (P2WPKH)
This type of wallet address starts with code bc1q. You can save up to 16% of transaction fees over P2SH and over 38% compared to legacy addresses. The idea was developed around 2015 along with P2SH but it was implemented around 2018 to further improve P2SH.
Pay to Witness Script Hash (P2WSH)
This type of wallet address starts with code bc1. This type of wallet is rare to tell its multisig features because it dealt with multiple signatures at one time. It further improves the security of P2SH. Since it hashes from multiple signatures, there is no way hackers can reverse engineer to reach the private keys at all.
This type of wallet address starts with code bc1p. Taproot was passed a Bitcoin community consensus in November 2021 to further reduce transaction costs and to increase transaction speed. The address has not yet been used. However, the address can process a larger size of information with a fraction of cost and time in theory.
The wallet address continues evolving due to cryptocurrency technology.
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