The Ethereum hard fork was completed successfully, as the target block 9069000 arrived on schedule, at 0:25 UTC.
Ethereum Hard Fork Set to Improve Speed, Gas Efficiency
The Istanbul hard fork improves the speed of the Ethereum network and prevents the spamming of blocks. Most big clients are in synch with the update officially on the mainnet. Exchanges have already synchronized their nodes and ETH activity and token transfers are back online.
— Bybit (@Bybit_Official) December 8, 2019
The eighth upgrade of the Ethereum protocol shows the network has walked a long path, but is not much closer to staking. Once again, proof-of-stake is envisioned to arrive within 18 months – one of the long-running promises of Ethereum.
Exchanges Freeze ETH, Token Transfers
The Istanbul hard fork, which will introduce anti-spamming protocols and again disable the difficulty time bomb, will also affect the entire token ecosystem. Exchanges are warning that disruptions may be expected at the time of the fork.
— HuobiGlobal 🌏 (@HuobiGlobal) December 7, 2019
The best approach is to avoid transactions in ETH and ERC-20 tokens, until the network has stabilized. The Ethereum network now holds higher stakes, as it supports ERC-20 versions of more than 2 billion USDT tokens. Additionally, decentralized finance depends on the smooth functioning of smart contracts and the achievement of consensus.
Pools, exchanges, and other services have warned they will support the fork, while waiting out for network stability.
The #Ethereum Istanbul Upgrade will occur at approximately 2019-12-08 00:00 UTC.
— f2pool (@f2pool_official) December 7, 2019
The biggest risk is that Ethereum nodes will still run incompatible versions, and the chain may split. At this point, some transactions may be lost when the final consensus is achieved.
The countdown to the hard fork has remained neutral for the ETH market price. The asset traded at $148.92 on Saturday, with sinking volumes down to $5.8 billion in 24 hours. The hard fork may slow down trading across multiple markets, by freezing temporarily ERC-20 USDT transfers.
What do you think about the Ethereum Istanbul hard fork? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!
Images via Shutterstock, Twitter: @JordiMorris1, @HuobiGlobal, @f2pool_official