Projects are still working on their goals amid the market downturn, and Ethereum is making progress.
We’re just over two months away from the long-awaited upgrade of the Ethereum blockchain – the Merge.
Tim Beiko, an Ethereum core developer, stated on the Ethereum developers’ conference call that the Merge date was “tentatively scheduled” for September 19.
The Merge Date Confirmed
Previously, Ethereum developers delayed the network’s “difficulty bomb” by around 100 days, providing a baseline estimate for the network’s long-awaited proof-of-stake transition in September. The team explained the delay by affirming how important it is for Merge’s stable performance.
The difficult bomb is a built-in update that significantly increases the complexity of PoW calculations, encouraging the switch from Proof-of-Work (PoW) to Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus. To validate transactions, Ethereum currently employs the PoW mechanism.
Although the timeline is not final, it is the first time the team has provided an exact estimated arrival time. After a series of shadow forks and numerous delays, Ethereum supporters see this as a positive sign.
A shadow fork is a type of testnet that focuses on a few changes in implementation for the main event. In preparation for the final Merge, Ethereum developers ran a series of test forks that simulated data from the mainnet into the test environment.
The team activated Ethereum’s ninth shadow fork on July 15. Developers are looking into the modifications introduced in the recent Sepolia hard fork, which was successfully merged earlier this month.
Ethereum’s Shadow Forks
The shadow fork will concentrate on increasing the MEV – maximum extractable value (formerly miner extractable value), which refers to the maximum value that can be extracted from a block of transactions that is greater than the standard block reward and gas fees.
Miners are currently extracting MEV, but when the network moves to the stake, the validator will take that role. In addition to the estimated timeline, the Ethereum developer provided a timeline for the upcoming plans.
The final phase of Merge testing on the Goerli shadow fork has been scheduled for August 11, according to developer @superphiz. The date for the full mainnet merge was set for September 19.
Concerns were raised that releasing all of the ETH from the Beacon Chain smart contract would result in a massive sell-off. To prevent network instability, the developers have confirmed that it will be released in batches and will last for months after the Merge.
According to Beacon Chain Explorer network records, there are currently over 13 million staked Ether and 408 active validators. These figures are worth approximately $15.6 billion and account for 10.7% of the total circulating supply.
At the time of writing, the price of Ethereum had risen by 6% over the previous 24 hours.
By 2018, a general scaling roadmap for Ethereum had been approved, and it is still in use today; it was commonly referred to as Ethereum 2.0 before being officially changed to the consensus layer.
According to the plan, Ethereum will transition from PoW to PoS, along with data sharding, allowing it to process hundreds of millions of transactions per second while maintaining a highly secure and decentralized network.
If the Merge is successful, it will mark a historical milestone and usher in a new era for the Ethereum blockchain. Despite being known as Ethereum’s most complex and significant update, this major event will have no effect on users’ activities.
So, what has made it a news headline over the years? It is what happens after the Merge.
Following The Merge, Ethereum developers will be able to focus more on implementing Data Sharding, which is scheduled to take place between 2023 and 2025.
The Merge is expected to reduce Ethereum’s power consumption, cause a slight deflationary or inflationary increase in ETH supply, and provide a high level of security.
While the vast majority of people are optimistic about Ethereum’s future after The Merge, a number of developers are concerned about Ethereum’s long-term development direction as the blockchain becomes increasingly complex as a result of various major changes.