The world’s most popular cryptocurrency, bitcoin, has just passed a very significant milestone in its history. 80% of all the bitcoins which will ever be mined, have now been mined. The cryptocurrency recently saw its 16,800,000th coin mined which marked the 80% mark of all 21,000,000 that will ever be created.
Most estimates say that the 21 millionth bitcoin will be mined around the year 2140, at this point it's unclear what would happen to the transaction costs at that time because miners’ only income would be from transaction fees, which they process, unlike now where they also earn from mined blocks.
While there will only ever be 21 million bitcoin, the amount in circulation will be significantly less by 2140. It’s possible to lose access to bitcoins by sending them into a wallet that nobody has the private keys to, or if you lose your own wallet. Once the private keys are gone, there’s no way for anyone to recover the bitcoin essentially throwing them out of circulation.
Bitcoin saw a massive increase in price during 2017, it started year off around $1,000 and steadily rose by $1,000 per month before going wild in December, increasing $10,000 on November’s price of around $7,900.
Source: Coin Market Cap