The block reward is a component of the blockchain network’s incentive structure that rewards eligible cryptocurrency miners for each successful block they create. The reward is an incentive for the miner to include the transaction in their block.
The Bitcoin protocol states that only 21 million bitcoins can be mined. Once this number is attained, miners will still be able to benefit from transaction fees, but they will no longer receive block rewards.
The reward for mining a block is currently 6.25 bitcoins per block and will decrease by half every 210,000 blocks or approximately every four years.
The main reason block reward exists to incentivize miners to secure and validate the transactions on the network. When Bitcoin first launched, miners were able to earn 50 BTC for each new block they added to the blockchain.
However, not long after Bitcoin launched, people realized that mining BTC would become increasingly difficult as more and more computers joined the network. This was due to Satoshi Nakamoto’s decision to integrate a “difficulty adjustment” into Bitcoin’s code. This feature automatically adjusts the difficulty of mining based on how many computers are connected to the network.