Ethereum eth

US$3,672.14 -2.98%

Collective Shift Analysis

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Ethereum Summary

Ethereum is an open-source, decentralised computing infrastructure. It uses a global network of computers that are connected via a publicly distributed network called a blockchain.

Ethereum is best known for supporting smart contracts—something that greatly differentiates itself from Bitcoin. Ethereum lets developers create decentralised applications (apps) available to anyone with a web wallet anywhere in the world.

For example, to create financial applications (i.e. DeFi), games, store value, NFTs or important digital assets. Think of Ethereum as the network or app store on which any developer can deploy an app.

History of Ethereum

Ethereum’s whitepaper was published in Nov. 2013 by computer programmer Vitalik Buterin. After being built by Buterin and other developers, the first Ethereum block was mined in July 2015. Ethereum went through a contentious hard fork in 2016, resulting in Ethereum Classic (the original, unaltered history of the Ethereum network).

The founding team raised roughly $18 million in a presale, where investors received ETH in return.

Upgrading Ethereum

Ethereum is undergoing a major redesign and upgrades. This is to evolve Ethereum to solve scalability and congestion issues that have been plaguing the network to meet demand.

Previously touted as ‘Ethereum 2.0’, it is an ongoing series of core implementations to increase network capacity, cater to more transactions and improve environmental efficiency. This is a continual process that will happen over the next couple of years, changes include:

  • Moving from proof of work (PoW) to proof of stake (PoS). [✅Occured in September 2022]
  • Embracing scaling solutions such as roll-ups to house the bulk of transactions—with the Ethereum base layer to become the settlement layer. [➖Ongoing]
  • Implement danksharding—this essentially splits the ledger into smaller bits to spread the load of validating transactions [➖Ongoing].

Ethereum is pursuing a “layered’ approach to scalability. Simply, Ethereum is creating software that allows blockchains and networks to build on top of it, inheriting its security. The idea is to move the bulk of activity away from Ethereum’s main chain (known as the L1) to alternative networks that inherent its security (known as L2s, such as Arbitrum) so it can achieve sufficient scale and reduce gas fees.

ETH Token Utility

Ethereum’s native cryptocurrency is ether (ETH). Unlike cryptocurrencies like BTC, ETH has no maximum supply but changes based on several factors, including network usage & the amount of ETH staked. As of early 2024, the circulating supply is roughly 120 million ETH.

ETH is the economic incentive used to reward those who validate transactions on the blockchain. Other use cases for ETH are listed below.

  • Transaction fees: ETH is required to send transactions or build applications. (See: What Is Gas on Ethereum?)
  • Store of value: As ETH is an important resource to running the blockchain, many users may choose to buy and hold as ETH becomes more scarce and a required asset to buy for gas.
  • Economic incentive: ETH is primarily the economic incentive for stakers to secure and validate the blockchain. Without ETH, there’s no incentive for users to secure the chain.

Some fun facts about ETH:

  • Initially, the total supply was 72 million ETH, of which 5.9 million went to 83 early contributors and an equal amount went to the Ethereum Foundation.
  • At least 636,000 ETH—roughly 0.5% of the circulating supply—is considered lost.
  • As of the end of 2022, solo stakers were responsible for roughly 6.5% of actively staked ETH, according to a study by Rated in 2023.
  • ETH is not an ERC-20 token. This is why wrapped ETH (WETH) exists.

Anyone can track the supply of ETH at ultrasound.money

ultrasound.money
Accurate as of March 2024 (Source: ultrasound.money)