Ethereum has now become one of the most popular crypto blockchains, and its upgrade, also known as a “merge”, will move the blockchain from a proof-of-work consensus mechanism to a more efficient, safer and less energy-consuming mechanism. proof of stake method. The method will also be better for implementing new scaling solutions.
The upgrade is now a must, as it will also be able to support the growing number of Ethereum users. It’s meant to fix issues like slower speeds and higher fees. So it makes sense to make this transition sooner rather than later. but unfortunately it is not that simple.
What is a Difficulty Bomb?
On a proof-of-work consensus mechanism, miners must solve complex mathematical problems to earn a reward. The difficulty bomb, which is a special code that has always been part of Ethereum, increases the computational difficulty of mining, ultimately making it impossible. When this so-called “bomb” explodes and runs its course, it will signal that the days until the so-called merge are numbered, and it will mean that eventually, proof-of-work math problems will become impossible to solve. solve. Miners will then lose profits trying to mine.
It would make sense for miners to eventually abandon the proof-of-work model and migrate to a proof-of-stake method. But before any of that happens, Ethereum developers all need to agree that enough testing has been done for the merger to be transparently unveiled. But so far that hasn’t happened, and the difficulty bomb has been delayed, not for the first, but for the fifth time now. Further testing is still needed to ensure a smooth transition, which will hopefully be around September 15, 2022.
Experts believe that a successful merger implementation could become one of the greatest achievements in cryptocurrency history. A smooth transition would transform one of the most widely used blockchains into a more fluid and affordable network capable of supporting a multitude of applications in the crypto world.
But if Ethereum developers aren’t able to do that soon, it could spell trouble moving forward. The longer it takes, the more likely it becomes that other blockchains capable of contracting smart contracts such as Solana, Avalanche or Cardano could be the ones to take market share first.
The Sepolia testnet
But the good news is that the penultimate test environment network (the Sepolia testnet), a two-step process, has been successfully completed. This testnet merger brings the project closer to the Ethereum mainnet upgrade later this year.
Currently, Ethereum is up around 5.15% since yesterday, and the media is speculating that this could be due to this successful completion and the upcoming “merger”.
“The bad news is that the Ethereum devs have beaten off the hard bomb that was an essential step for the planned merger at the end of the year. The good news is that they managed to get the Sepolia testnet working. Ethereum’s upgrade, which is now years behind schedule, shows just how tough this business is. Every passing day opens doors for projects like Cardano, Solana, Avalanche and many more. But, Just like Bitcoin, Ethereum has a first-mover advantage and that’s still huge. If Ethereum can finally get proof-of-stake, it will, no doubt, cement dominance in the smart contract space. But they’d better to go fast.