The Bitcoin ecosystem is still in its infancy, and it is likely that it will continue to evolve in the coming decades. But regardless of how Bitcoin evolves, the total supply of coins will remain fixed at 21 million. This limit is determined by the Bitcoin source code, which was programmed by its creator(s), Satoshi Nakamoto, and cannot be changed. Once all bitcoins have been mined, the amount of coins in circulation will remain constant.
It is true that switching to a reward structure based solely on transaction fees would almost certainly decimate the mining network now, as few Bitcoin miners would be able to profitably mine Bitcoin if they received only 6.5% of their typical rewards. This can make it difficult for the average consumer to determine whether Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are legitimate. Even though there is now a decade of precedent for Bitcoin, the Securities and Exchange Commission is making all decisions on a case-by-case basis in what experts call its “crawl, walk and run” strategy towards mainstream cryptocurrency adoption. In the coming decades, bitcoin's purchasing power may be so strong that the latter's payment will be enough to force miners to keep the ledger and mining blocks even in the absence of new bitcoins. Nothing less than the future of bitcoin is at stake, and with it the possibility of exercising financial self-sovereignty through a decentralized cryptocurrency revered as digital gold.
Bitcoin miners will continue to be rewarded at that time, but only through transaction fees and not newly minted coins. Luka Boškin, CMO of cryptocurrency trading platform NewsCrypto, argues that as the number of BTC produced by mining decreases, Bitcoin will undergo “significant changes in its protocol.”On the other hand, Skrill's head of cryptography, Jordan Stoev, believes that Bitcoin's blockchain will likely be reserved for significant value transfers, and that layer 2 solutions or alternative blockchains will be used for most transfers. The halving influences the speed at which new coins enter circulation, which can affect the value of existing Bitcoin holdings. The future of bitcoin is uncertain, but one academic has warned that the world's most popular cryptocurrency could disappear in the near future. The Bitcoin blockchain was designed around the principle of controlled supply, meaning that only a fixed number of newly minted Bitcoin can be mined each year until a total of 21 million coins have been minted.
With regard to deflation, most Bitcoin advocates believe that fears that Bitcoin will cause a deflationary spiral and end demand for goods are exaggerated. Industry professionals have recently alluded to what crypto experts perceive as “aggressive federal regulation” as a key factor in Bitcoin's price lag. Adrian Eidelman, co-founder of bitcoin's smart contract platform and sidechain RSK, says: “The main running costs of bitcoin miners is energy consumption and therefore they have a clear incentive to find and maintain cheap sources, which are often renewable. As Bitcoin's inflation rate continually falls, some economists have claimed that there won't be enough Bitcoin on which to base a monetary system, and that Bitcoin will never support retail payments due to its high price.