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Ethereum Developer Tip The Merge Will Happen In August “If Everything Goes According To Plan”

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Ethereum’s long-awaited migration to a Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus mechanism, which has been repeatedly postponed, is expected to happen sometime in August. I hope so.

Preston Van Loon, a core developer of the Ethereum (ETH) network, told attendees at the Permissionless conference that the transition, known as a merge, would happen sometime in August if all goes according to plan.

Van Loon told the 5000 attendees that the team would aim to transition before the so-called “difficulty bomb” impacted the network as planned.

“As far as we know, if everything goes according to plan, August just makes sense. If we don’t have to move [the difficulty bomb]let’s do it as soon as we can.”

Echoing this sentiment, Ethereum researcher Justin Drake stated that ensuring the merger proceeds quickly is a top priority, sharing his “strong desire to make this happen ahead of the August difficulty bomb”.

The “difficulty bomb” refers to the program coded into the Ethereum blockchain that intentionally slows down the network. It was designed to encourage the transition to PoS by making it more difficult for miners to remain in the Proof-of-Work (PoW) chain after the merger.

On April 11th, Ethereum developer Tim Beiko announced that The Merge was postponed again. Despite a successful “shadow fork test,” Beiko said The Merge would not be implemented in June as expected. According to Beiko, developers must act quickly to avoid the difficulty bomb, otherwise they will have to roll out another update to delay the bomb.

“If client developers don’t think they can deploy The Merge to mainnet before block times slow down too much, it needs to be delayed again.”

The rescheduling comes on the back of this week’s news that the Ethereum network will experience a “huge testing milestone,” with the Ropsten testnet merge set to take place on June 8th. In the Ropsten testnet merge, the PoW testnet is combined into a new testnet for the PoS consensus layer. It will simulate what will happen once the actual merger between Ethereum and the Beacon Chain finally takes place and it becomes a PoS network.

If The Merge is successfully implemented in August, the final milestone on the roadmap for Ethereum, formerly known as Eth2, will be the sharded chain upgrade, which is scheduled to go live in early 2023. Until then, however, the network will continue to leverage Layer-2 networks like Polygon and Optimism to handle scalability and high transaction volumes.