Ethereum developer, Tim Beiko, has recently stated that the Ethereum Merge may take place in the second week of September, leaving bulls excited for what’s to come. The long-anticipated Merge will see the Ethereum network shift from proof of work, a mechanism that was introduced by Bitcoin, to a proof of stake system, which was first implemented by Peercoin in 2012.
This merge timeline isn't final, but it's extremely exciting to see it coming together. Please regard this as a planning timeline and look out for official announcements!https://t.co/ttutBceZ21 pic.twitter.com/MY8VFOv0SI
— superphiz.eth (@superphiz) July 14, 2022
The Ethereum developers have had the switch to proof of stake in the pipeline since 2015 but, due to engineering difficulties and other factors, the Merge had been put on hold until 2022. A major criticism of cryptocurrency is the industry’s inability to substitute for large energy consumption, a problem which the Merge is expected to rectify by cutting the network’s energy use by 99.95%. Many believe that the upcoming switch to proof of stake will include scaling and security benefits – however, that’s only speculation.
With the current proof of work system, miners are competing to secure the Ethereum network by trying to accumulate as much computational power as possible. By successfully solving difficult puzzles, miners are able to earn rewards. The current system has received negative reviews considering that the model requires an immense amount of energy to operate.
The shift to proof of stake replaces miners with validators. Validators are able to stake 32 ETH with the network, in the hope of being randomly chosen to add blocks to the chain.
The Merge is expected to solve Ethereum’s energy issues, in turn creating a more environmentally conscious network. While lower fees and faster transactions aren’t guaranteed, many believe it could be a product of the Merge – however, nothing has been confirmed. Although the crypto industry as a whole has been on a downtrend as of late, the upcoming Merge is great news for Ethereum.