Vitalik Buterin, the ethereum co-founder and conceptually its inventor, has publicly disagreed with the timeline of Justin Drake, an eth 2.0 dev, on when ethereum 2.0 should launch.
In response to Justin Drake stating ethereum 2.0 will launch in January 2021 at the earliest, Buterin said he “quite disagrees.”
“I would favor launching phase 0 significantly before that date regardless of level of readiness,” he said.
In the first public intervention by Buterin on when ethereum 2.0 should launch, he gave his reasoning as follows:
“Eth1 took 4 months from the first multi-client testnet to launch (~end of March 2015 Olympic to end of May 2015 for eth1 launch), and I’d argue the four-month clock started ticking for us at the beginning of July when Altona launched.
Eth2 phase 0 is in some ways simpler than eth1 and in some ways more complex: more complex PoS, but no complicated GPU-oriented PoW; more optimization required, but no complicated VM, etc etc. I’m inclined to say eth2 phase 0 is a little simpler on-net.
Also, eth2 is not going to have any critical applications depending on it until phase 1, so the practical risks of breakage are lower (though you could argue the ecosystem as a whole is bigger).
So on the whole I see no reason to take more time for the eth2 phase 0 launch cycle than we did for the eth1 launch.”
The ethereum 2.0 genesis block launch of phase 0 creates a network that is kind of more like a testnet than a full accounting book of its own blockchain.
There won’t be any transfers of eth in the ethereum 2.0 blockchain for example, until phase 1.5 at the earliest if that continues to be the plan they follow.
There won’t be any dapps or anything whatever except the skeleton which is real, and this skeleton has shards but limited to just sending stakers to their own “pools” if you like or shards, and the other part that is real is these stakers do get actual eth for validating primarily the eth1 block headers.
So it is halfway between a testnet and a main net. Meaning any bugs if they are exploited would be serious but not anywhere as serious as if they were exploited on the current eth blockchain.
Plus, as there would be nothing on it except for staking, it should be very easy to fix any protocol level bugs, but obviously you wouldn’t want to be anywhere near creating an impression of a buggy blockchain.
Still both bitcoin and eth have had bugs exploited in the early years after they launched, and for bitcoin an unexploited very serious bug which allowed for printing of coins was discovered as late as nearly a decade after it launched.
Making the timing of the launch more of a judgment call on what is good enough, with Danny Ryan, the ethereum 2.0 coordinator, also kind of agreeing with Buterin by stating “I and others are still putting money on 2020.”
Whether it will be November or January remains to be seen however, but the difference of two months appears to be fairly slight with better indications of when it will go out to be provided by actions instead of words.
The first act being the launch of the deposit contract presumably on the eth1 testnet, and then the launch of the ethereum 2.0 testnet.
Then the longer that ethereum 2.0 testnet runs, the closer is the mainnet launch, with all now to go out soon enough.