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Why it matters: Last month, PC gamers and crypto enthusiasts learned they would have to wait a bit longer for Ethereum to switch to proof-of-stake. Now, developers have a new date for "the Merge," which should make the cryptocurrency use less energy and no longer require PC graphics cards for mining.
At a Web3 event this week, a core Ethereum developer said he expects the cryptocurrency to move from its current proof-of-work model to proof-of-stake in August. The so-called "Merge" will finish final testing sometime in the next several weeks. Previously, developers expected the switch to happen in June, but a developer confirmed a delay last month. Hopefully, there isn't another.
Ethereum core Dev @preston_vanloon just said the eth merge is ready,they are now only testing, and expects the merge to happen in August. Packed room @Permissionless are excited about it. Great question @TrustlessState. Also on panel @drakefjustin pic.twitter.com/vX4beNatJ5— Benjamin Cohen (benjicohen.eth) (@benjicohen421) May 19, 2022
Moving to proof-of-stake is supposed to address a couple of cryptocurrency's most significant issues with critics. It should reduce Ethereum's carbon footprint and ease the supply of GPUs that miners were buying up under proof-of-work.
Whatever happens with Ethereum, the GPU crisis may already be ending. Painfully inflated pricing over a year has finally been falling back to Earth recently. Earlier this month, a crash wiped about a year's worth of value off Ethereum, Bitcoin, and other cryptocurrencies, further altering the profit margins for miners.
Hopefully, the Merge arrives in time to minimize the impact of mining on the latest generation of GPUs from Nvidia, AMD, and Intel when they launch throughout the second half of 2022.