zkSync launched registrations for developers to deploy applications to its blockchain-based network, known as a "mainnet," a day after Polygon unveiled a zero-knowledge-based scaling solution for Ethereum.

That is not a full-blown launch, according to zkSync, one of the most well-known initiatives in the zero-knowledge rollup area. Before deploying code, developers must register their blockchain addresses.

Ethereum Race

In the drive to increase Ethereum's capacity to allow decentralized transactions, the move, however, intensifies the competition between two of the most dynamic Layer 2 blockchain networks. Additionally, it shows how quickly zero-knowledge technology is changing how users can engage with the No. 2 bitcoin network and its smart contract features.

Polygon said on Tuesday that its zero-knowledge solution would launch on the 27th of March.

The Ethereum scaling problem has not yet been won by a zero-knowledge rollup. ZK-rollups of this kind are called zkEVMs.

The market is fiercely competitive. ZK-rollups compete with optimistic rollups, a different technique whose two main implementations, optimistic and arbitrum, control more than 80% of the layer 2 industry, according to L2BEAT.

Co-founder of Arbitrum Stephen Goldfeder has lately raised concerns about ZK-rollups by challenging their superiority to Optimistic systems.

The set of guidelines that govern how the Ethereum blockchain handles transactions, known as the EVM, can be improved upon, he said on Twitter last month.

"There's a narrative out there that ZK Rollups will be able to accomplish everything that Optimistic Rollups do but better."

Taking the Heat

In an interview with The Defiant earlier this month, Goldfeder revealed a new product that he said would offer even more valuable features than EVM-compatible platforms.

When zkSync made another announcement about their system, it received some criticism. The project opened a mainnet that was only accessible to its own developers on October 28. This meant that no external projects were live on the network, throwing into question whether the announcement needed to be made at all.

Ecosystem Finance

Despite some opposition, zkSync has gained popularity. Back in October, holders of UNI, the token of Uniswap, the largest volume-wise decentralized exchange in DeFi, decided to deploy the protocol to zkSync's solution.

According to Crunchbase, Matter Labs has received $258M in funding altogether. The company also has raised additional $200M to build a "environment fund," to stimulate adoption of zkEVM.

Despite not having introduced an open mainnet, StarkWare, a major rival with zkSync and other products, raised $100M at a $8B valuation in May.

A cryptographic proof that ensures a statement is true without disclosing what it is is known as zero-knowledge. Application scenarios include offloading transaction processing off disrupted blockchains and enabling private transactions on public blockchain networks. Citizenship can be verified without divulging passport information.


Because they enable ZK-rollups to validate transactions off of expensive Layer 1 platforms like Ethereum, the proofs are helpful for scaling blockchains. Next, ZK-rollups can publish those verified transactions to Ethereum, lightening the burden on the Layer 1 processor.

The pressure on other ZK-rollup providers like StarkWare to introduce their mainnet platform may have intensified as a result of Polygon's announcement earlier this week and the zkSyncs team's announcement today.

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