Binance Integrates Ethereum Layer 2 Network Optimism


Key Takeaways

  • Binance has integrated Optimism.
  • Customers can now deposit ETH to the Layer 2 network without having to use Ethereum mainnet.
  • Optimism is one of the leading Layer 2 solutions working to help Ethereum scale.

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Binance also integrated Arbitrum last year. 

Binance Commits to Optimism 

Binance is optimistic about the future of Ethereum’s Layer 2. 

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The leading cryptocurrency exchange announced it had integrated Optimism Friday, adding to its November 2021 Arbitrum integration. The move allows customers to deposit ETH straight to Optimism without having to deposit on Ethereum mainnet and use a bridge to migrate onto Layer 2. That means they’ll be able to move their assets and access the Ethereum network at a lower cost. 

Optimism is one of several Layer 2 projects working to help Ethereum achieve scalability. It leverages Optimistic Rollups, a technology that reduces traffic on Ethereum by processing transactions on a new network and then sending them to Ethereum mainnet as calldata. Optimistic Rollups offer significant advantages over Ethereum in terms of speed and transaction costs, though they do suffer from long mainnet withdrawal periods of up to a week. Optimism and Arbitrum are currently Ethereum’s two leading Optimistic Rollup solutions, already hosting the likes of Aave and other top DeFi projects. Arbitrum is currently leading the Layer 2 race over Optimism with about $2.76 billion in total value locked to Optimism’s $500 million. Optimism was in the spotlight last month when it announced its OP token launch, and rumors suggest that Arbitrum could follow with its own token in the future. 

Besides Optimistic Rollups, the other promising Layer 2 technology that Ethereum is betting on to become more user-friendly is ZK-Rollups. By leveraging a cryptographic technology known as zero-knowledge proofs, ZK-Rollup solutions offer a way to bundle many transactions together and commit them to Ethereum’s Layer One as a single proof. Projects working in the ZK-Rollups domain include zkSync and StarkWare. 

While Ethereum’s Layer 2 space is gaining momentum, Ethereum itself also has a big few months ahead. This year, the top smart contract network is expected to ship its long-awaited “Merge” to Proof-of-Stake. The launch date for the upgrade is still unknown, though recent hints from the Ethereum Foundation suggest that it could come as soon as August. Ethereum has already completed several dedicated Merge testnets and is due to ship the update on the Ropsten testnet around Jun. 8. 

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Disclosure: At the time of writing, the author of this piece owned ETH, AAVE, and several other cryptocurrencies. 

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