What is a Lightning Address? In this article, we explain what it is and how you can make use of it.
A Lightning Address is an address that looks like an email address for example ‘email@example.com’. With a Lightning Address, you can receive lightning payments at any time, even if you are offline, and you can send a Lightning payment to any existing Address with ease.
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Why do I need a Lightning Address?
The Lightning Address protocol was created to make lightning easier than ever before. It allows you to send money like you send emails — instantly and abundantly. All you have to know is a simple address that looks exactly the same as email addresses.
With the Addresses, we build on top of the Lightning Network. The Lightning Network’s ability to send bitcoin instantly and with (almost) no fees is a superpower for billions of people in the global south who are denied access to banks.
With Lightning, everyone can send and receive payments and transfer value with others without having to ask anyone for permission.
Why Lightning Addresses Are Better
The good part about Lightning Addresses is that it’s much easier to use. Traditionally, sending money via the Lightning Network requires you to generate a Lightning Invoice. That is a very long code that nobody can remember. It looks like this:
Lightning Invoices are not very sexy and are hard to use. The Address protocol makes the usage of the Lightning Network much easier. Because all needed to send a payment is to enter a human-readable email address.
Which Wallets Support Lightning Addresses
A growing number of Lightning wallets already support Lightning Addresses. It shows that wallet developers and wallet service providers see that it’s an important feature.
The editor’s choice is Wallet Of Satoshi (WoS) because it’s the easiest to sign up. With WoS you can even customize your Address. Other popular choices with customizable Lightning Addresses are Blink Wallet and the Alby web wallet.
Below you can find a list of major Lightning wallets currently available.