Ethereum At Three: 2018 Year of Competition, PoS
As Ethereum marks its third anniversary on Monday July 30, some players with projects within the blockchain and cryptocurrency space have lauded the platform as well as its authors, especially Vitalik Buterin, for its impact on the crypto industry. They also touched on what to expect in the blockchain space this year and in coming years.
Today, Ethereum’s developer community – approximately 250,000 members – is estimated to be one of the the largest in the world among blockchain projects, according to the Founder of Streamr, the blockchain-backed data platform, Henri Pihkalak. With about 17,000 nodes running the network across six continents, Pihkalak prides in the fact that Ethereum has been stable for years which is quite an achievement for its authors. He says: “It’s this stability which makes it so hard for other smart contracting blockchain challengers, even those which promise some brilliant features, to take Ethereum on.”
For Gabriele Giancola, the co-founder of a Swiss loyalty token protocol that helps brands run their programmes on the blockchain, qiibee, Ethereum has functioned over the last three years as the platform that allows any service to be decentralized. He adds: “Ethereum’s current success can be largely credited to early adopters on both the developer and user side, however mainstream adoption remains the overarching goal…I believe validating Ethereum’s future through proof-of-stake will ensure its immutability over the next three years and beyond.”
Nicolas Gilot of blockchain-powered gaming distribution platform, Ultra, notes that Ethereum’s impact on the crypto space over the last three years with projects like the Enterprise Alliance which has on-boarded some of the world’s biggest and most influential companies should be credited for making crypto to be taken more seriously by corporations.
“Smart contracts are already disrupting venture capital, and more money was raised through ICOs than through VCs in 2017.” he says. “This year, Ethereum will need to prove that it can scale and evolve to proof-of-stake. 2018 is also the year of competition for smart contract blockchains including the likes of EOS, Tezos, and Zilliqa.
Though Ultra prefers EOS for it is scalable, feeless and has a layer of accounting, Gilot still believes that the future looks bright for Ethereum especially with the proposed Casper and Sharding merger. EOS has been dubbed the “Ethereum Killer” and it was alleged to have been responsible for the bear market that rocked the crypto industry in the first half of the year after it reportedly liquidating over two million ETH through Bitfinex. However, others see EOS as another project under the Ethereum umbrella. With 1,800 registered DApps and 94 out of the top 100 blockchain projects launched on the Ethereum network, they believe there wouldn’t have been a rapid development of the token-sale market without it.
“Ethereum has paved the way for many interesting projects like EOS, NEO, Cardano and Zilliqa, highlighting how indispensable this technology has become across a wide spectrum of industries,” says Roberto Rabasco, the Co-Founder of Orvium, an open source platform for managing scholarly publications’ lifecycles. “These projects raised significant funds during their respective ICOs, but have also thrived as a result of dedicated communities and teams of developers building the underlying infrastructure to enable the simple launch of applications.
Carlos Grenoir, CEO of Olyseum, a blockchain-based social network for sport lovers, says the multitude of real-world use cases of Ethereum goes beyond monetary transactions but provides security and speed on what are traditionally insecure and slow processes without an intermediary. He added that Ethereum is all about freedom and putting control back into the hands of the user.
Ethereum is expected to upgrade before the end of the year to reduce its supply and its inflation rate to about 2% a year (as against Bitcoin’s which will remain at 4% until mid-2020). The upgrade will also require users to lock their coins into smart contracts if they want to secure the network which will lead to a decrease in supply.