On Tuesday, the inventor of Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin, said that the Ethereum merge is projected to take place “around” September 13 to September 15 and that this date is now on schedule. This is the day at which the proof-of-work consensus technique that requires a lot of energy will be abandoned by the second biggest cryptocurrency in the world.
The market shifts
The merging is only the most recent improvement to the Ethereum blockchain, which is being done in the interest of establishing a trustworthy decentralized environment for the future of money. The transition to proof of stake delivers several advantages, one of which is the alleviation of worries around energy use.
Block transactions are validated using proof of stake by validators who have bet a certain amount of their tokens on the outcome of the transaction. The greater the number of tokens that a person has linked to the blockchain, the greater the likelihood that they will be randomly selected to serve as a network validator.
In contrast to this, proof of work is an energy-intensive technique that depends on computers to solve mathematical formulas to mine tokens. This rate of energy consumption is a key critique of proof of work, which will remain the basis of Bitcoin mining when Ethereum abandons the procedure. Despite this criticism, proof of work remains the foundation of Bitcoin mining.
Apart from the problem with energy, and on top of the recent meltdowns of crypto lenders, the cryptocurrency sector as a whole is facing a multitude of macroeconomic issues. These concerns range from political tensions to high inflation rates to hawkish national monetary policies. These large-scale variables are generally regarded as the spark that ignited the latest bear market.
Price pressures are seen lately
In November of 2021, the price of a bitcoin hit an all-time high, which was $69,000. Since then, the price of Bitcoin along with the rest of the market has suffered as a result of the challenging economic circumstances. The short-term price forecast for the most popular cryptocurrency is still unclear as Bitcoin’s price continues to fluctuate and encounters some resistance near $20,000.
It is not apparent what type of event or change may assist Bitcoin is making a comeback. As the volatility of leading cryptocurrencies continues to worry mainstream investors, they may become more critical of the fundamentals of Bitcoin. Furthermore, the network upgrades that Ethereum is planning to implement to position its ecosystem as the currency of the future could place even more pressure on Bitcoin’s usability.
Vitalik Buterin voiced his worries about Bitcoin’s proof-of-work issuance model during an interview that took place one week ago with the journalist Noah Smith on the topic of security, governance, and consensus mechanism models. Buterin is concerned not just about the amount of energy that is being used in the present, but also about how the continuous issue of a proof-of-work token may impact future validation.
Following China’s crackdown on cryptocurrency mining, which resulted in a large reduction in the proportion of renewable energy sources that power the network, the study was strengthened. Alex de Vries, a researcher and skeptic of cryptocurrencies, observed that “Bitcoin became dirtier following the Chinese mining crackdown in 2021.”
Is the event being hyped unnecessarily?
However, not everyone is persuaded that this will result in Ethereum being the dominant cryptocurrency. The majority of the current narrative has been driven by the fact that analysts such as Glen Goodman from eToro have pointed out how the price of Ethereum has outperformed the price of Bitcoin in recent weeks. In the end, it is unclear what the future of Bitcoin will be like following the integration. There are several issues at play, including regulation, worries about energy use, and competitiveness. Inventors are apprehensive of the possible economic dangers at a time when their greatest rival is ready to claim a major technological advantage.