Ether Price Modestly Higher as Vitalik Buterin Discusses Ethereum 2.0 Timeline

Ether’s price saw modest upside on Thursday after Vitalik Buterin, the protocol’s founder, unveiled a roadmap for a major network upgrade that has been in the works since 2014.

ETH/USD Update

The ether price experienced a sudden spike at 02:59 UTC, reaching a high of $203.70, according to CoinMarketCap. At the time of writing, the digital currency was trading hands just below $200 for a gain of 1.1%. Prices have yet to fully recover from the sudden downtrend that occurred on Monday, which wiped more than $1 billion from ether’s market cap.

At the time of writing, Ethereum has a total market value of $20.5 billion, placing it second among active cryptocurrencies. Daily trade volumes have improved slightly to around $1.5 billion, with Dobi Trade processing the largest share of the daily volume followed by Bithumb and BitForex.

Ether continues to face near-term resistance around $200. Clearing this level would lead to a re-test of the most recent high near $205. However, investors shouldn’t expect much action for ETH given the general lack of buying interest in the broader market.

Ethereum 2.0 Timeline

Speaking at the Devcon4 conference in Prague Netherlands on Wednesday, Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin said the upcoming Serenity upgrade will be launched in the foreseeable future. While Buterin didn’t specify a date, he implied that the release will occur relatively soon.

Serenity will implement several upgrades that have become buzzwords for the Ethereum community over the last few years. This includes implementation of the Casper proof-of-stake consensus and scalability improvements through sharding, a type of partitioning that separates large databases into smaller, more easily managed parts. These data shards essentially refer to smaller parts of a much larger database.

The launch of Ethereum 2.0 will require several testnets following lessons learned from the Ethereum 1.0 roll-out, which Buterin admitted occurred too quickly.

Ethereum 2.0 seeks to address many of the ailments currently plaguing the network. The constituent parts reflect several years of research and development that long predate the 2016 bull market. The fallout from that bull market has been especially painful for Ethereum, which at times faced an existential crisis tied to declining reservation demand and the gas conundrum where network fees are paid in assets other than ether.

To the latter point, some have argued that requiring smart contract payments be made in ether doesn’t fix the problem since it creates third-party dependency, which is ultimately bad for the ETH price. After all, if a user had to sell their tokens for ether every time they wanted to transact in that token, the selling would occur before the transaction requires it.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Chief Editor to and Contributor to, Sam Bourgi has spent the past nine years focused on economics, markets and cryptocurrencies. His work has been featured in and cited by some of the world's leading newscasts, including Barron's, CBOE and Forbes. Avid crypto watchers and those with a libertarian persuasion can follow him on twitter at @hsbourgi