What’s the difference between Bitcoin-Qt and Bitcoin Core?

Confused about Bitcoin Core and Bitcoin-QT? We have the answers you are looking for, and then some.

Last Updated: April 22, 2018 at 9:48 PM EST

When you get down to Bitcoin terminology, things can be very confusing. Us geeks don’t have an excuse – we just haven’t been very good at making things convenient, ever. You will see words being thrown around which wouldn’t appear to make sense, and often you will find needless renaming schemes. The Bitcoin Core and Bitcoin-QT distinction belongs to the same category. The short answer is that there is no difference between Bitcoin Core and Bitcoin QT – they are just different versions of the same thing. First it was called Bitcoin-QT and later it was renamed to Bitcoin Core.

Why does stuff like this happen? It happens because bitcoin is something that isn’t being handled by marketing people at all. Whenever a company releases any product they do lots of market testing and focus groups. They go through many different iterations to make sure that they end up with the perfect product. They want to make sure that none of their customers or clients are confused by what they are proposing. A lot of work goes into making sure that the products you use are aptly named. A lot of it may even seem useless to people, but it does end up making a difference.

It is clear from using Bitcoin that no marketing person has touched it or has been anywhere near it. You find needlessly complicated jargon everywhere. The problem is that anyone who has any actual authority in the world of Bitcoin already understands all the jargon and the terminology. It isn’t confusing to them. Sure, it was confusing to them in the beginning, but it isn’t confusing to them at all anymore. That is why it is unlikely that things will change. If you are struggling with these terms, it is probably because you are new to the Bitcoin scene. In a few months you will understand all the terms being used, and you will not see the necessity of simplifying things either.

Realistically speaking, we probably will not see a change in the way Bitcoin works and operates until it truly reaches the masses. Once people start using it to buy things and once it is accepted by a majority of vendors things, will be simplified. You can’t expect your average person to know about forks, blocks, and the thousand other concepts in Bitcoin. They will want a currency that just works. Something they can use to buy the things they want to buy.

Now, you may think that renaming Bitcoin-QT to Bitcoin Core was a strange move, but it does make sense. The problem isn’t that it is called Bitcoin Core now – that is a great name. It shows that it is the core of Bitcoin, the simplest and the most direct connection. The real question is why was it called Bitcoin-QT in the first place? Back then it was just cryptocurrency enthusiasts, and we are sure the name meant something to them. For now you can keep using Bitcoin Core, knowing that it is the same thing as Bitcoin-QT.