Anticipating Ethereum Big Merge

The Ropsten testnet on the Ethereum network is all set to become the first public test network to transition from proof-of-work (PoW) to a proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus mechanism. The testnet will execute its own Merge, giving developers a look at what to expect after it goes live.

The resulting effects on the testnet, its applications and clients will give developers first-ever glimpses into what they can expect to happen for the mainnet Merge and how to prevent problems from arising. The Ropsten testnet is one of many testing grounds for Ethereum clients. It mimics most aspects of the Ethereum mainnet, including one of the most vital: it replicates any gas fee fluctuations that developers or users would experience on the Ethereum mainnet. The Merge is one of the most highly anticipated events in the history of the Ethereum network because it will change the basics: how transactions are ordered on blockchain, how rewards are calculated, how tokens are burnt. The upgrade will accomplish several goals, the most important of which is converting Ethereum’s PoW consensus algorithm to PoS. According to the current algorithm, transactions are validated by miners with a lot of computing power, and with PoS miners who put up the most collateral will validate the most transactions. Ethereum developers claim that this upgrade will cut the blockchain’s energy consumption by up to 99.5%. Obviously, it will make the network vastly more energy-efficient and sustainable for widespread use.

Additionally, it will change the name of the current network — Eth2 — to the Consensus Layer. Combined with the base fee of Ethereum’s transaction fees being burnt, analysts predict that the Merge will burn more ETH than is created through validator rewards, making the cryptocurrency deflationary. For example, a total of 198,122 Ethereum, equivalent to $480 million, was burned in May.

Despite the hopes and beliefs of many Ethereum users, the Merge is not expected to reduce gas fees on the network. Similarly, it’s not supposed to affect miners: an Ethereum representative has tweeted that “basically nothing should change” after the Merge, which is expected around June 8th on the network. As it is said on Ethereum blog, “Ropsten will be the first longstanding testnet to run through the Merge.”

Ethereum’s Ropsten testnet successfully launched its proof-of-stake beacon chain on May 30. One of the developers described it as “the first dress rehearsal of the main event”. Validators have produced several blocks on the testnet since the launch of the beacon chain. Data on the beacon chain scanner shows that the participation rate is very high. More than 10 million ERC-20 testnet tokens have been deployed on the network.

How has the coin’s price changed over the latest period of time with the Ropsten just around the corner? Ethereum has been trending up over the last few weeks, which can be partially explained by the anticipation sentiment due to its massive software upgrade. Currently, the price of ETH is $$1,866.94 and the coin is seems to be in a bullish state. However, there is a high possibility of a trend reversal.

The Ethereum Merge itself is scheduled for later this year, although any specific date hasn’t been provided. Some developers think it is due to happen by August, while Vitalik Buterin, the Ethereum creator, has predicted that it could be launched between September and October.

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