The first phase of the highly-anticipated Ethereum Merge, the Ethereum Bellatrix hard fork is live and has now been finalized. It went live at epoch 144,896, much to the delight of the Ethereum community who took to the social media platform Twitter to welcome the launch. The news was first shared by an account named sassal.eth, who wrote;
“The Bellatrix upgrade just went live on the Ethereum Beacon Chain.”
Ethereum Merge is on
As the Bellatrix launch has now happened as earlier predicted, anticipation is rife for the mainnet merge to be completed. However, that isn’t going to happen until another few days.
Meanwhile, in what appears to be a by-product of the Bellatrix upgrade, Binance has resumed ETH withdrawals and transfers on its platform. The exchange announced this in an earlier tweet. Recall that Binance suspended the withdrawals and deposits of ETH and ERC-20 tokens about a week ago. However, that was a mere cautionary move ahead of the much-awaited Ethereum Merge.
Ethereum developers have been working round the clock to move the network from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake. And as expected, the upcoming merge will achieve just this. The Beacon Chain, which is the proof-of-stake consensus layer, has been existing since December 1, 2020. However, it was only functioning as a separate blockchain from the mainnet. With the Merge, however, developers will now fuse the mainnet with the Beacon Chain. As a result, energy consumption on the network will also be reduced to the barest minimum.
ETH/BTC ratio surges
For what it’s worth though, the ETH/BTC ratio is up and has hit its highest in several months. Ethereum hit a new high for 2022 at $1,667 and was up against Bitcoin at 0.084 BTC. Interestingly, this was its highest ratio since December 2021.
Ethereum might be showing positive signs already, even as the Merge updates have begun. As of press time, however, ETH is down 0.34% in the last 24 hours, trading at $1,587. Nonetheless, expectations are high that ETH will continue on an uptrend all through the merge.