As a developer choosing the right Ethereum scaling solution for your project could be an overwhelming and confusing decision given the availability of a large variety of options such as the latest improvement in Layer-1 itself like Ethereum 2.0, Layer-2 chains like Arbitrum One and Optimism, and side chains like Polygon or xDai.
Even within the Layer-2 scaling solutions, developers have a choice to make between particular technologies such as State Channels, Plasma and Rollups.
Nowadays, Rollups, particularly Zero Knowledge Rollups (zkRollups) are becoming popular in the Ethereum community among both builders as well as traders and investors because of their technological advantages over other methods.
What are zkRollups?
Rollups use a hybrid combination of on-chain and off-chain processes for the validation of transactions. In contrast to Optimistic Rollups, where every transaction is assumed to be valid unless proven otherwise; zkRollups keeps the computation and storage off-chain but some data is kept on-chain per transaction and uses a validity proof to instantly prove if the transaction is valid or invalid.
As zkRollups keep some data per transaction on-chain and transaction data is included in the Layer-1 block hence it provides the underlying Ethereum mainnet level security with zero reliance on third parties. This instantly makes zkRollups the go-to choice for Ethereum Scaling because of its security features, ultra-low gas fee and instant transfer confirmation of Eth & ERC20 tokens with a 10-minute expected finality on Layer 1 once submitted.
Features of zkRollups:
- Privacy by Default
- Instant transfer confirmations with a 10-minute finality on Layer 1
- Ultra-low transaction fees (~1/100th and ~1/30th for ERC20 & ETH transfers respectively)
- Payments to existing Ethereum addresses
- Gas fees are conveniently payable in the token being transferred
- Ethereum mainnet-level security with zero dependencies on any 3rd party
- Withdrawals to mainnet in ~10 minutes*
- Multisig support
ZK Rollup is relatively a very sophisticated technology. It can be used for token transfers and specialized application development in its current state. However, implementing general-purpose smart contracts on it comes with a learning curve for the Solidity developers. However, once ZK Rollup is fully developed, all existing Ethereum dapps and services will be able to smoothly migrate to it without writing any new code.
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