Tokyo/Hong Kong — Bitcoin backers celebrated as the community embraced a new mechanism to improve usage and allow it to scale, boosting confidence in the virtual currency and sending prices back near record highs. The community, which had been split on how best to make the cryptocurrency more manageable, rallied behind a code upgrade known as SegWit2x, which aims to increase the network’s transaction capacity. That fuelled a rally on Thursday in bitcoin’s price against the dollar, which had plummeted from a peak in June as concerns grew about its future. "We’re thrilled to get past this impasse," said Andrew Lee, head of bitcoin-shopping startup purse.io. The development opens "the doors to much-awaited innovations," he said. Bitcoin enthusiasts in New York and San Francisco, to Hong Kong and Tokyo, gathered in bars and offices to hold impromptu parties, while others took to Twitter and social media to cheer the move, as well as the price rally.

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