Cancun-Deneb (Dencun), the next step in Ethereum’s journey to becoming a scalable settlement layer, is just around the corner.
In a recent blog post, Ethereum developers confirmed the dates for the next two key steps of the Dencun upgrade — the Sepolia and Holesky test networks — to be completed. This indicates that the long-awaited upgrade could go live on the main Ethereum network as soon as March.
Dencun: Ethereum’s Path To Improved Scalability
Dencun is set to be the first major upgrade since Shapella in April 2023, which allowed users to withdraw staked ether (ETH) from the blockchain. The upcoming upgrade will enable the game-changing “proto-dank sharding” (or EIP-4844), which is expected to significantly scale the blockchain and introduce “blobs” for data, thus helping the blockchain to process that data more efficiently and at low costs.
The proto-danksharding improvement also promises to reduce transaction fees on Ethereum layer 2 solutions such as Optimism, Base, and Polygon zkEVM, which will then be passed on to end-users.
If all goes according to plan, Ethereum Foundation protocol lead Tim Beiko said Dencun will be triggered on the Sepolia testnet on Jan.30. The final test for the upgrade will happen on Holesky on February 7. After that, Dencun will hit the mainnet — though the exact date has not been given.
The Dencun upgrade was successfully activated on Ethereum’s Goerli testnet on Jan. 17 despite a few hiccups that initially delayed the deployment.
Potential Impact On ETH Price
Ethereum, the blockchain behind the second-most valuable crypto, ether, is notorious for network congestion. This makes it challenging — and costly — for individuals who want to use it to develop apps or transfer funds.
With the Dencun upgrade expected to make a significant reduction in congestion and network fees, Ethereum is poised to become even more attractive to investors, cementing its dominance over its rivals.
Overall, 2024 is shaping up to be an action-packed year for the Ethereum ecosystem. Ethereum’s anticipated Dencun upgrade, coupled with potential spot ETH exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in the U.S. could potentially propel its price to new highs.
ETH traded for $2,254 at press time, up 0.9% in the last 24 hours, data from CoinGecko shows.