Ethereum nodes have been falling and falling, down by circa 1,500 since the December hardfork, and down by some 3,000 since the beginning of the year.
At the beginning of the year we reported bitcoin nodes had just about overtaken eth, with bitcoin having 10,266 nodes at the time, while the highest number for eth was 10,078.
The node numbers for bitcoin have remained roughly the same, now at around 9,500. Eth nodes however have seen a considerable drop, falling to 6,500 before recovering, but have plunged again after the fork to now 7,000.
One reason for the fall in nodes may be due to less interest because of the falling price, but it might also be because ethereum cuts off some nodes even for maintenance upgrades.
That sharp drop recently for example is most probably because they hardforked just to add some gas fee efficiencies, meaning any node that didn’t upgrade is cut off from the network.
They are to hardfork again now in two weeks to delay the difficulty bomb for two years, with non upgraded nodes again to be cut off.
While in bitcoin they try to give nodes a choice and if they can’t do it in a way that gives them such choice, they just don’t do the upgrade.
Bitcoin nodes used to be at just 5,000, but the 2017 bull market has clearly increased adoption, with bitcoin having close to 200 nodes running on tor.
It’s not clear how many eth nodes are on tor, but in 2017 ethereum had 25,000 nodes. That has now dropped with numbers differing but it’s between 7,000 and 7,700 publicly accessible nodes.
Both networks are running at roughly the same 1MB per ten minutes, with bitcoin actually having more capacity currently as it can go up to 2MB.
Both have kind of the same spread geographically, but Germany is rising as a hot spot for bitcoin nodes presumably because of the undergrounder coders scene there.
Finally, although bitcoin’s market cap is significantly bigger than eth’s, the node numbers don’t have a difference of the same magnitude.
Yet generally there is some correlation between price/adoption and node numbers, but at a ratio of sorts as a node run by a business for example can serve many rather than just one.