Ether hits a record high above $4,400 after a successful network upgrade clears the path for ETH 2.0

Ether hits a record high above $4,400 after a successful network upgrade clears the path for ETH 2.0
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  • Ether reached a record high of $4,402 on Friday, after a significant Altair upgrade to its network.
  • The cryptocurrency's move higher comes days after bitcoin hit an all-time high above $66,000.

Ether, the native cryptocurrency of the ethereum blockchain, hit a record high above $4,400 on Friday after an important upgrade went live on its network.

The digital asset rose as much as 7% to $4,402.13, according to data from CoinDesk, taking its gains in the last month to about 55%.

Ether is up 490% so far this year. With a market cap of more than $515 billion, it is the second-largest cryptocurrency.

The network's long-planned upgrade to a scalable, proof-of-stake consensus model turned bullish sentiment higher days after bitcoin hit a record high of $66,974 on October 20.

Altair, an important upgrade for ethereum 2.0, or Eth2, was introduced on October 27. It is described as the first mainnet upgrade to the Beacon Chain mechanism, which is at the heart of ethereum's transition to a proof-of-stake network from proof-of-work. This shift to PoS, from an energy-consuming PoW protocol, is being promoted as a faster, more secure, and more environmentally friendly network.


The altair upgrade, which will test whether the Beacon Chain is functional, shows that the transition is possible, an ethereum developer Tim Beiko told CNBC Make It. "It means there's a slightly higher chance that things will go well for the [Eth2] transition next year," he said. The ethereum blockchain is set to undergo its substantial transition in 2022.

While all the talk in the crypto space has recently been dominated by bitcoin and shiba inu, dogecoin's ethereum-based rival, crypto cheerleaders had been waiting to see ether breakout to record highs too.

Former Goldman Sachs executive Raoul Pal, whose crypto portfolio consists of 70% of ether and 5% of bitcoin, said in a tweet Friday that he is "more than irresponsibly long ETH."

Ether hits a record high above $4,400 after a successful network upgrade clears the path for ETH 2.0

The recent hype surrounding shiba inu particularly might have benefited ether. "This is because SHIB is an ERC-20 token, so whenever SHIB is exchanged, some ethereum is burnt, thus reducing its supply and benefiting its price," said Nick Spanos, co-founder of Zap Protocol.

Another expert said ETH's moves are far more interesting than other crypto assets for now. That's "especially with all that's been going on in the Dapp (decentralized apps) space over the past quarter and the amounts of ETH that have been flowing into NFTs and DeFi," said Dragos Dunica, co-founder of DeFi insight platform DappRadar.


"Being the leading smart contract platform, ethereum's price is being directly impacted by the growing adoption of Dapps across the most active categories of DeFi, NFTs, and gaming," he added.

Dunica said he wouldn't be surprised if ether hits $10,000 before Christmas.

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