A lot of Ethereum investors and community members have been aching to know when Ethereum 2.0 will be released.
To answer that question on the get-go, Phase 0, which is the first phase of ETH 2.0, will launch sometime between November 2020 and January 2021. However, it won’t be a complete solution.
In this article, I will do my best to illustrate when this upgrade would likely be released.
To be honest, there is no direct answer when it comes to the Ethereum 2.0 launch date because:
- Ethereum 2.0 will be released in multiple phases
This begs the follow-up question ‘which release are you talking about?’ Phase 0? But you wouldn’t see any drastic improvement then. What about Phase 2 or 3? When will they be deployed? Well, that would depend on when Phase 0 is gonna be ready.
- Ethereum 2.0 has no timeline
Consensys has a roadmap you can check out but they only reveal estimates at best. Plus, the blog post was published in May 2019 so we can assume that a few changes have been made since then.
So before we ask “when will ETH 2.0 come out,” we must first identify what we want out of it.
Why we want Ethereum 2.0
Serenity brings a lot of good things
Sometimes dubbed as Serenity, the Ethereum 2.0 launch will offer an array of new implementations. This includes the Beacon Chain, Shard Chains, eWASM, etc.
Among the new functionalities is a new virtual machine (VM). This VM enables smart contracts to be written in any language and open doors to more developers worldwide. Not that many developers know Solidity, which is Ethereum’s smart contract language used today.
And of course, there is the proof of stake blockchain that will enable us to finally stake on Ethereum. This would allow anyone who has at least 32 ETH to earn passive income without consuming too much electricity or buying pricey specialized hardware.
But Scalability is the MAIN thing
That’s all very enticing. But what the vast majority of investors and supporters want the most is for Ethereum to scale. Why? Because scaling will allow Ethereum to surpass its network limits.
Today, the Ethereum blockchain can handle between 10-19 transactions per second (tps). That’s nothing to Visa’s 24,000 tps. Take a look at the bar graph comparison between Ethereum, Bitcoin, Visa, and Ethereum 2.0 below.
As you can see, the transaction speed of ETH 1.x cannot even be seen in the graph due to how slow it is compared to Visa and ETH 2.0. And yet Ethereum is supposed to handle Decentralized Apps (DApps)?
Any command you do in an Ethereum Dapp or smart contract is considered a transaction. It doesn’t matter if you’re betting on an Ethereum-based casino site or buying gems on an Ethereum-based game. You will incur gas.
And the price of gas heavily depends on how much load (transactions) the network could handle. Back when the CryptoKitties DApp became popular, the entire network went sluggish. Additionally, gas fees spiked so high that sending Ether became such a pain.
This is the number one reason why people are waiting with bated breath for ETH 2.0.
We want Ethereum to be fast and cheap. That way, more Dapps can run on it without the fees surging or the network slowing down. And this begets more DApps.
More DApps begets more user adoption. And more user adoption results in higher valuation of ETH.
And when the price of ETH surges, hodlers become happy. That’s what most people are after when they say they want Ethereum 2.0.
Ethereum Scalability Solutions
According to Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin, Ethereum scalability won’t be an issue soon, but the transition won’t be instant.
ETH 2.0 will eventually be able to facilitate roughly 100,000 tps. But that level of scale would take at least a couple of years.
The good news is that we don’t need Serenity to scale Ethereum initially. There are some scaling solutions that can be implemented on Ethereum as it is today, Vitalik says.
Basically, Vitalik talked about the so-called Optimistic Rollup, a second-layer solution that allows ETH to scale to 1,000-3,000 tps. It’s not 100,000 tps, but it’s a tremendous improvement over what we currently have now.
So instead of focusing on Ethereum 2.0, it might be in your best interest to anticipate the adoption of second-layer solutions first. It might not be as good, but at least we won’t have to worry about high gas fees or slow confirmation times on Ethereum for a while.
Plus, layer solutions are already here. We just need more DApps to have Layer 2 support and that’s it!
When Will Ethereum 2.0’s Scaling Features Launch?
But of course, if you truly want to know an estimated date as to when we’ll enjoy the promised 100,000 tps, here’s my estimate. A lot of things could happen in a few months or years, especially in the fast-paced crypto sphere. So please take this with a grain of salt.
Down below is the outdated timeline of Serenity. The Beacon Chain (Phase 0) was supposed to be released sometime in December 2019. Apparently, they underestimated how long it would take to be ready.
Halfway through 2020, and the Beacon Chain is still not live.
Fortunately, the last multi-client testnet of Phase 0 was successful so it shouldn’t take long now. According to a Reddit Ask-Me-Anything (AMA), Vitalik says the release date would likely be in mid-November 2020. However, Ethereum researcher Justin Drake thinks it would likely be delayed in to January 2021.
Therefore, we can assume that Ethereum 2.0 will be launched sometime between November 2020-January 2021.
By then, Ethereum 2.0 obviously can’t scale to 100,000 tps just yet. We would likely need to be somewhere far beyond the release of Shard Chains or near the release of eWASM.
eWASM was supposed to be released in 2021. Considering the one-year delay, one would expect that we should expect eWASM to be released in 2022. But that’s based on the assumption that there won’t be further delays anymore.
And let’s face it, Ethereum is quite notorious for delays. So we should expect Ethereum to scale to about 100,000 tps sometime in 2023-2025. It’s quite far away, isn’t it?
But like I said, take this with a grain of salt. We can’t really predict with certainty what’s gonna happen in the next few years.
There are too many projects that depend on the success of Ethereum 2.0. And the developers know that. And they also know that they have just as many competitors dying to take their place as the leading smart contract platform.
Tether (USDT) is currently the coin eating up all the gas of the network the most. But it’s not the only one.
DeFi protocols are the new hype in 2020, and have attracted hundreds of thousands of new users in a short amount of time. They are doing fine now but the more users adopt DeFi and other Ethereum Dapps, the sooner we start having problems.
Fortunately, Ethereum has a short-term solution in the form of rollups or second-layer protocols that allow the network to scale just a bit. Let’s root for their adoption. Go spread the word!
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