Amid the surge in BRC-20 transactions on the Bitcoin blockchain, Lightning Labs believes its new solution is “unequivocally a better solution” to minting assets without clogging up the blockchain. 

In an announcement on Tuesday, Lightning Network infrastructure firm Lightning Labs unveiled “Taproot Assets,” a rebranded version of  “Taro” which had resulted in a trademark infringement lawsuit in August.

Taproot Assets is a new software update that is designed to operate maximally off-chain to avoid blockchain congestion but allows users to mint “an unbounded number of assets” in a single on-chain transaction.

Some of the core features of the upgrade, apart from on-chain issuance, include the transfer of tokens, and discoverability on the testnet with mainnet integration soon to follow. 

“While the excitement around building on bitcoin is encouraging, the fee market’s response has indicated that these protocols are not designed for scale,” said Lightning Labs in a blog post, seemingly referring to the surge in tokens minted using the BRC-20 token standard. 

The network congestion triggered by the mass minting of BRC-20 tokens, which surpassed $1 billion in market cap last week, resulted in widespread criticism from several Bitcoin proponents. In fact, some core Bitcoin developers are now deliberating on whether to delete non-standard Taproot transactions altogether. 

However, the move drew criticism from advocates of the Bitcoin Ordinals protocol, who opined that changing Bitcoin’s code to reject these transactions goes against the censorship-resistant principles that the network stands for. 

Taproot Assets’ new way of minting assets could be a happy compromise for parties in both camps. As Lightning Labs pointed out, the creator of the BRC-20 token standard “Domo” had previously called Taproot Assets a “better solution.”