New Ethereum Era: Ethereum Merge Is Complete
What does this mean for the future of Ethereum
After years of research and delay, the enormous Ethereum redesign known as the Merge has finally taken place, transferring the digital machinery at the center of the second-largest cryptocurrency by market value to a system that uses a great deal less energy.
It was no easy task to switch from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake, two different ways to operate a blockchain. Before the Merge took place, Justin Drake, a researcher at the nonprofit Ethereum Foundation, said, “The metaphor that I use is this concept of taking out an engine from a functioning automobile.”
The potential reward is enormous. Now, Ethereum should use 99.9% less energy. According to one estimation, it appears as though Finland’s electricity grid has abruptly been turned off.
The network, which supports a $60 billion ecosystem of cryptocurrency exchanges, lending organizations, non-fungible token (NFT) markets, and other apps, will become more secure and scalable, according to Ethereum’s creators.
More than 41,000 individuals were watching a “Ethereum Mainnet Merge Viewing Party” on YouTube when the Merge began in earnest at 6:43 a.m. UTC. They waited with anticipation as important numbers poured in, showing that Ethereum’s fundamental mechanisms had held up.
The Merge finally concluded after roughly 15 arduous minutes, at which point it was deemed successful. Behind the Merge, the price of ETH, the second-largest cryptocurrency after bitcoin (BTC) with a current market value of close to $200 billion, was basically unchanged.
Crypto investors, enthusiasts, and skeptics have been eagerly watching the update, which reduces the network’s dependency on the resource-intensive process of cryptocurrency mining, for the effects it is anticipated to have on the larger blockchain sector.
The Dallas Mavericks basketball team’s billionaire owner and investor, Mark Cuban, told CoinDesk that he would be “watching [the Merge] with curiosity like everyone else,” noting that it would cause ETH, the network’s native coin, to deflate.
From the beginning, it was anticipated that Ethereum would ultimately convert to proof-of-stake.
However, the shift required a difficult technological effort, one that was so dangerous that many questioned whether it would even succeed.
Drake admitted, “There’s a part of me that hasn’t really comprehended that this is truly occurring. “I’ve conditioned myself to just anticipate it happening in the future, so in a way, I’m in denial.
The fact that the upgrade may have been one of the biggest open-source software projects in history and required collaboration between dozens of teams and hundreds of individual academics, developers, and volunteers added to its complexity.
“I think the Merge can actually persuade those individuals who were intrigued in Ethereum, but dubious of the environmental consequences, to come and try with it,” said Tim Beiko, an Ethereum Foundation engineer who was instrumental in organizing the upgrade.