A major network update/hard fork has long been known to be bullish for a cryptocurrency. Ethereum network has been subject to constant criticism due to its bottleneck scalability issues and network congestion. The testnet launch of ethereum’s much-awaited system-wide upgrade is set to be deployed from next week, but will it boost ETH prices?
Fundamental Development: The Ethereum Istanbul Upgrade In October
After several delays, the Ethereum Istanbul hard fork will finally be launched over the next three months providing six different code modifications. This upgrade will entail a couple of Ethereum Improvement Proposals (EIPs) and will be launched on a number of testnets first before transitioning to the mainnet.
Istanbul is the eighth Ethereum network hard fork and it aims to implement changes that will give the network increased scalability, decentralization, security and greater interoperability with privacy coin Zcash. The changes during this update are also expected to give the network protection against DDoS attacks.
According to a post on medium, Istanbul will be launched on the Ropsten testnet on October 2 and on Görli testnet on October 30. Deployment on the Rinkeby testnet will be in November and the Kovan testnet in December before the launch of the mainnet scheduled for January 3, 2020.
Drawing Closer To Ethereum 2.0
After the Istanbul upgrade, Ethereum users should anticipate the launch of the Beacon Blockchain next year. Istanbul will make it possible for Ethereum 1.0 to run alongside Ethereum 2.0 (Serenity) before the complete transition.
Per a post published by ConsenSys, Phase zero or the Beacon blockchain will entail transition from a Proof-of-Work (PoW) to a Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus mechanism which will take the role of network validation from miners to special network validators. Besides the proof-of-stake, the Ethereum 2.0 will also include important projects like sharding and eWSAM.
Speaking about Ethereum 2.0 during the Ethereal Summit held on September 15, Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin said that he’s very confident about the launch of Ethereum 2.0 early next year, adding:
“The next step is to make sure they can maintain a public network at scale. We’re talking about potentially hundreds of thousands of validators aggregating a huge number of transactions.”
Prior to the Ethereal Summit, Buterin had stated during a podcast episode that Ethereum 2.0 will be able to process “tens of thousands of transactions per second” making it “the world computer”.
Can This Istanbul Upgrade Revive Eth Prices?
Today, Ethereum is hovering around the $165 level, its lowest in four months. Since the Tuesday market-wide crash, ETH has not shown any signs of recovering. On a weekly chart, ETH has shed an eye-popping 25% of its value from a high of $224 registered last week.
Notably, ethereum’s price movements are largely influenced by the king crypto except a week ago when Ethereum soared independently. Therefore, unless there’s a major catalyst to boost bitcoin’s price, Ethereum is at risk of incurring more losses. In the short-term, Ethereum bulls need to push the price above the $175 level to boost a decent recovery in the crypto back towards $200.
Nonetheless, the launch of Ethereum 2.0 is just a few months away and could potentially catalyze a bull run for the largest altcoin.