A significant update to Ethereum’s blockchain network has been successfully implemented, making it the cryptocurrency industry’s most ambitious software upgrade to date.
The upgrade, which was given the name the Merge and was finished early on Thursday morning, was announced on Twitter by Vitalik Buterin, one of the co-founders of Ethereum.
Because of this change, the power-hungry computers that were previously used to order transactions on the network have been replaced with a more energy-efficient setup that makes use of heaps of the network’s native token, Ether, which are stored in what are known as “staking wallets.” As a direct consequence of this change, Ethereum’s overall energy consumption is predicted to drop by approximately 99%.
To say nothing of Ethereum, which is home to approximately 3,500 active decentralized apps that range from exchanges to games and handle billions of dollars’ worth of cryptocurrency, such a disruption had never been attempted in the cryptocurrency industry before. The Merge, which has been in development for years, does not affect how end users interact with Ethereum. However, it is a crucial first step toward additional upgrades that will make the network more efficient and less expensive, which should lead to an even greater rise in both its stature and its number of users.
During an online Merge viewing party, which was essentially a public video call where developers tracked live progress on the switch, Buterin said, This marks the beginning of Ethereum’s long and winding road toward becoming a highly developed and mature system. Buterin referred to this development as “the first step in Ethereum’s big journey toward being a very mature system.”
“And there are still more steps to take. We still need to fix privacy issues and scale our operations. The Merge, in my opinion, is a symbol of the transition from an early stage Ethereum to the Ethereum that we have always wanted.
The developers who had been working on the project for months began to congratulate each other on the call as soon as it became apparent that the transition had been successful. The viewing party, which at its height was attended by more than 41,000 people, featured content that ranged from dry, technical explanations of what the Merge would entail to the performance of a song with a Merge-related theme. Included in the song’s lyrics were the lines “Carbon footprint is all gone. That is the reason why we are singing the song by Merge.
Ether underwent a change in its properties as a result of the Merge, which brought it closer in nature to yield-bearing securities. According to the tracker Staking Rewards, staking Ether will result in a return, which is anticipated to be in the neighborhood of 5.2% after the Merge. It is anticipated that there will be a net decrease in the supply of Ether tokens shortly after the update, which, together, should make the coin more appealing to investors.
After the merge, the price of ether fell to $1,584, a 1.2% decrease. The token’s value has increased by more than a factor of five in 2021, significantly outperforming Bitcoin’s value by a wide margin. This performance can be attributed, in part, to optimism regarding the Merge. Since hitting record highs in November, both cryptocurrencies have struggled, with Ether falling more than fifty percent since the beginning of the year.
The new version of the software is being referred to as the Merge because it will combine the original Ethereum blockchain with a parallel network that has been operational for nearly two years and is testing the proof-of-stake concept. In general, the idea of performing the upgrade has been mulled over for more than seven years.
Despite the fact that it has been finished, the Merge could be followed by days or even weeks of hiccups, as was the case after some previous Ethereum software updates. Near the time of the software upgrade, cryptocurrency exchanges such as Coinbase Global Inc. halted the processing of withdrawals and deposits relating to Ethereum out of concern for security flaws and hacks. In preparation for the Merge, cryptocurrency lender Aave had temporarily halted Ether borrowing.
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