The excitement around the next upgrade of Ethereum (ETH), The Mergerinvolving the merger of two blockchains – Mainnet Ethereum and Beacon Chain – unknowingly sparked rumors in the community.
Called the biggest upgrade in Ethereum history, The Merger indeed proof of work (PoW) has ended for the Ethereum blockchain. However, here are five misconceptions that stand out above the rest.
First misconception: Ethereum gas fees will be reduced after the Merger
The notion that the upcoming Ethereum upgrade will reduce Ethereum’s infamous gas fees (transaction fees) is one of the biggest misconceptions spread among investors. While all investors want lower gas fees, the Merger is a change in consensus mechanism that will move the Ethereum blockchain from PoW to proof-of-stake (PoS).
Rather, reducing gas fees on Ethereum will require work to expand network capacity and throughput. The developer community is currently working on a rolling-centric roadmap to make transactions cheaper.
Misconception #2: Ethereum transactions will be faster after the Merger
It can be assumed that Ethereum transactions will not be noticed faster. However, there is some truth to this rumor, as Beacon Chain allows collectors to post a block every 12 seconds, which is about 13.3 seconds on the Mainnet.
Although Ethereum developers believe that the transition to PoS will allow a 10% increase in block production, users will not notice this small improvement.
Misconception #3: A merger will make the Ethereum blockchain unavailable
Contrary to misconceptions that imagine positive results for Ethereum after the merger, a popular rumor suggests that the planned upgrade will cause the Ethereum blockchain to be temporarily shut down.
The developers do not expect any downtime as the blocks transition from building per PoW to building per PoS.
Misconception 4: Investors will be able to withdraw staked ETH after the Merger
Staked ETH (stETH), a cryptocurrency backed 1:1 to ETH, is currently locked on the Beacon Chain. Although users would like to withdraw their stETH holdings, the developer community has confirmed that the upgrade does not facilitate this change.
It will be possible to withdraw stETH holdings during the next major upgrade after the Merger, known as the Shanghai upgrade. Therefore, the holdings will remain locked up and illiquid for at least 6-12 months after the Merger.
Misconception 5: Validators won’t be able to withdraw ETH rewards until Shanghai upgrades
While ETH remains locked to investors until withdrawals resume after the Shanghai upgrade, validators will have immediate access to fee rewards and the maximum extractable value (MEV) earned during block mining proposals from the execution layer or Ethereum mainnet.
As the fee reward will not be newly issued tokens, it will be available to the collector immediately.
To also link: Polygon Co-Founder Says Ethereum Will Surpass Visa Thanks to zkEVM Rollups
Sharing his perspective on the untapped potential of Ethereum, Mihailo Bjelic, co-founder of Polygon, Cointelegraph said that zkEVM Rollups, a new scaling solution for Ethereum, will enable the smart contract protocol to leapfrog Visa according to the terms of transaction debits.
Sandeep Nailwal, another co-founder of Polygon, echoed Bjelic’s thoughts saying that the solution should cut Ethereum fees by 90% and increase transaction throughput to 40-50 transactions per second.