We’re thrilled to share a new type of node on our platform called a Lite node. A Lite node has all the same features as our current Standard nodes, but they are backed by Neutrino instead of a Bitcoin full node. These Lite Nodes start at $9.99 per month, making them the cheapest way to run a Lightning node. These nodes are perfect for individuals that want their own Lightning node without having to spend a bunch of time and money to get started.
We want everyone to harness the full power of the Lightning Network and this is a step in that direction. For less than a Netflix subscription, you can have your own always-on Lightning node. Everyone is able to create a Lite node today from our dashboard. We also offer a free trial if you want to try out the platform first.
What is Neutrino?
So, what is Neutrino anyway? According to the repository, Neutrino is an experimental Bitcoin light client written in Go and designed with mobile Lightning Network clients in mind. Today it’s used in almost every mobile noncustodial Lightning app. Neutrino removes the need for a Bitcoin full node and instead queries existing Bitcoin nodes on the network to get the necessary chain data. This blog post from Lightning Labs is a good explainer about Neutrino and its benefits.
Why you need a node
We’re creating this new type of node for individuals because we think it’s important for everyone to have their own node. To really reap all the benefits of the Lightning Network you need a node. Let me briefly highlight some key benefits:
Use any wallet software you want
When you have a remote and always-on node, you can use any software you want to manage it. You aren’t locked in to the wallet prover’s app. You can easily use Zap, Joule, and Thunderhub on the same node!
Use your channels from anywhere
No matter what software or device you’re accessing your node from, your channels are there. The same channel you used to pay your friend via Zeus can be used to stack sats on LNMarkets. Not to mention, since your node is always-on you have the ability to earn routing fees.
Send or receive payments anytime
No hacks or workarounds here. Your node never sleeps so it’s always ready to send, receive, or route a payment. This is really awesome when you have Keysend enabled too.
Login with your node
As more websites start adopting things like LSAT, your node becomes your credentials. Decoupling this from an application means you can login from anywhere and any device.
While Neutrino is really helpful, it’s still relatively new. For this reason, it has some quirks to consider. For instance, when you start a new Lite node it’s not automatically synced to the chain like a Standard node. It has to sync the chain from its Bitcoin peers. Your connectivity is also at the mercy of the nodes on the Bitcoin network, whereas a Standard node is guaranteed a connection spot on a Bitcoin node. For these reasons, we recommend Lite nodes only be used for personal Lightning nodes. If you are creating a node for your business, for routing, or for anything outside of a personal wallet we recommend using a Standard node.
We’re really excited to be able to offer the quickest, easiest, and now cheapest way to create a Lightning node. There’s no excuse not to use Lightning 😉. We also offer a 7 day free trial so go create a free node and see what it’s all about. If you have additional questions or comments please email firstname.lastname@example.org or join our Discord group. We’re happy to help. Have fun out there.