ETH Merge Anticipated in August; Co-founder Confirms

The most anticipated event in Ethereum’s 7-year existence, according to the project’s co-founder, Vitalik Buterin, and a few of the core ETH developers, might happen in the upcoming months. This should happen before the network is slowed by the “difficulty bomb.”

Preston Van Loon, an ETH core engineer, said at a discussion at the Permissionless conference that The Merge might happen in August: “As far as we know, August – it just makes sense if everything goes according to plan.” Let’s do it as fast as we can if we don’t have to move (the difficulty bomb).”  

The difficulty bomb is a built-in feature of Ethereum’s programming that will eventually slow the network down. It was included by the development team for two reasons: to motivate developers to strive for the proof of stake transition and to make it more difficult for miners to stay on the proof of work chain after the event.

Although the difficulty bomb has been postponed in the past to ensure that the network functions properly, the team hopes to avoid another delay this time and finish The Merge before the blockchain slows down.

Another developer, Tim Beiko, already stated that The Merge will not take place in June as planned, but rather a few months later. ETH researcher Justin Drake made a similar forecast, saying he had a “strong desire to make this happen before difficulty bomb in August,” repeating Van Loon’s statements. 

During the ETH Shanghai Summit, Vitalik Buterin reiterated this position, but also left room for unexpected snags, stating that The Merge may happen in September or October. The Ropsten public testnet was announced to complete The Merge in early June, marking a major milestone on the Ethereum blockchain’s path to PoS.

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