Ethereum Roadmap 2023: These upgrades are on the way3 min read
In 2022, the main focus of the Ethereum (ETH) community was on the merge. Throughout the year, numerous investors eagerly awaited this historic upgrade. The fact that there was no ETH rally as a result of the merger may have disappointed some investors. But the merge was just the beginning of a series of other upgrades designed to further scale and improve the Ethereum network. To be precise: According to ETH mastermind Vitalik Buterin the merge marked just over half of the entire Ethereum roadmap.
These upgrades await Ethereum 2023
There are still some things that need to be improved to make the ETH network suitable for the masses. For example, the network has to scale further, technical bugs have to be eliminated and the Ethereum developer community still has their hands full to ensure the long-term decentralization of the blockchain. For the last two Ethereum developer conferences there was more clarity on the ETH Roadmap 2023. According to the developers, the priority in 2023 will be to enable Ethereum staking withdrawals and further scale Layer 2 networks.
ETH staking withdrawals
At the most recent conference, the developers agreed to give Stakers the opportunity to pay out the staked ethers in the first quarter of 2023. An upgrade that enables this should be relatively straightforward to implement, according to the developers, and finally allow stakers to access their ETH and staking rewards again after more than two years.
The tentative upgrade date has been set for March 2023. With several test phases of the upgrade already underway and more planned for January and February, the developers are pretty confident they can meet their self-imposed deadline.
Some fear that a lot of ETH could suddenly be sold as a result of the upgrade. However, according to the developers, this concern is unfounded. While there will likely be some selling pressure from the upgrade, it’s unlikely that there will be a bigger sell-off. You can find out why in this article.
Layer 2 scaling with the EIP-4844
Next on the roadmap is EIP-4844 on, also known as proto-thanksharding. EIP-4844 reduces transaction costs for Layer 2 rollup technologies. It introduces a new breed of transaction type (“data blocks”) specifically designed for transferring Layer 2 data onto the Ethereum mainchain. As a result, any transactions on Layer 2 networks such as Arbitrum or Optimism no longer need to compete with existing ETH transactions.
According to the developers, this could reduce transaction costs on layer 2 networks by up to 100 times cheaper. The EIP-4844 is said to be embedded in an upgrade planned for May or June 2023 called “Cancun”.
Reminder: EIP-4844 adds a new fee market to ethereum for short-lived data. Rollups would use this for data availability instead of hijacking regular gas.
This is a GAME CHANGER for the rollup-centric roadmap, as fees could be lowered ~100x.https://t.co/tgy8GHVFUM
— liam.eth (@liamihorne) November 24, 2022
Upgrades to the Ethereum Virtual Machine
Another upgrade, which is expected to come a little earlier than EIP-4844, is said to improve the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). The Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) is a type of computer running inside the ETH blockchain. It is used to execute smart contracts stored on the Ethereum blockchain.
Minimal changes have been made to the Ethereum Virtual Machine over the past seven years. For the first time, however, five important improvements are to be implemented this year. Among other things, the updates should reduce gas fees for developers of decentralized applications, simplify the implementation of smart contracts in the Ethereum ecosystem and prepare the code of the EVM for the future. According to the developers, the latter is the most important change as it makes future upgrades to the EVM much easier. This is to ensure that the EVM remains the best virtual machine for executing smart contracts.
The goal of the developers is to improve the EVM to be done by the end of March. However, it is not yet clear whether all EVM updates in the upgrade will be included.
The full implementation of the entire Ethereum roadmap will take many more years. Which further Ethereum upgrades are to be implemented after the above has not yet been determined. However, Vitalik Buterin recently announced the long-term development goals of the blockchain.