With 2018 starting, a lot of us are talking about Bitcoin transaction fees. The fee prices are higher for two reasons. Bitcoin is now worth more, and the price is set in Bitcoin, so the fee is higher in dollars and the mempool (memory pool) of transactions waiting to be processed is high, so higher fee transactions get processed first.
There is a big debate and some might say civil war on how to fix the Bitcoin transaction throughput. The answer that was suggested by the core developers is SegWit, which is short for Segregated Witness. They are trying to fit more transactions into the 1 MB block, but even now we are having a problem as only 8% to 10% of transactions tend to be Segwit type.
There are a few sites that I like to visit to look in on the progress of the mempool battle. First, There is bitcoin ticker, Then there is Johoe’s Bitcoin Mempool size statistics, and I also look at the Segwit Charts. There is also a site cataloging Segwit adoption. As of January 6th they have: deployed: 17, ready: 88, work-in-progress: 23, planned: 24 of 152. Which translates to ( 11%, 57.8%, 15%, 15.%) So there are still a lot of non-segwit transactions in the mempool and they take up more room. Moving more companies or services to SegWit deployed will hopefully help, especially the more popular ones like Coinbase exchange and MyCelium wallet. If you can’t wait for them, move to Gemini, GreenAddress.it and Samourai Wallet.