The Ethereum 2.0 or Eth2 staking contract continues to attract deposits, even after the beacon chain was successfully launched last week.
The contract has now accrued more than 1 million ETH (worth over $605 million). There is no closing date for the contract, meaning people can continue to make deposits to earn staking rewards.
Rewards for early stakers are high, at around 20% per annum. They will continue to drop as more validators join the network. Anyone can become a validator by depositing a minimum of 32 ETH through the staking contract. All deposits and rewards, however, can only be withdrawn when Phase 1.5 of Eth2 goes live — sometime in 2022.
With more than enough deposits in the contract, Phase 0 of Eth2 — the beacon chain, was launched on December 1. The launch marked the beginning of the multi-stage transformation of Ethereum into a proof-of-stake blockchain. The new blockchain is said to be more efficient and scalable than the current proof-of-work network.
But it will take years to fully transition into the new network. "We're over half-way there," Justin Drake, Eth2 researcher at the Ethereum Foundation, told The Block in an interview last week. "Phase 0 was extremely difficult, and I'd say, with it, above 50% of the total Eth2 work is done."