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Ethereum Price Chart

Historical price data for Ethereum.
  • ethereum
  • Ethereum
    (ETH)
  • Price
    $3,495.89
  • Market Cap
    $427.48 B

What is Ethereum?

Ethereum is a blockchain platform that supports the development of decentralized applications (dApps) and novel functionalities known as smart contracts. The Ethereum network uses Ether (ETH) as its native currency. With ETH, users can pay for network fees and access dApps built on the network.

ETH is currently the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization and has maintained this status for several years since its launch. While several new competitors have also emerged since then, Ethereum remains the most widely used blockchain network in the number of users and developers.

History of Ethereum

Russian-Canadian developer Vitalik Buterin conceived the idea of the Ethereum network in 2013 and was helped by a group of co-founders, including Joseph Lubin, Gavin Wood, Anthony Di Lorio, and Charles Hoskinson, to bring the vision to life.

In 2014, development work on Ethereum began with the project also crowdfunding within the same year. Finally, the Ethereum network went live on July 30th, 2015, becoming one of the first blockchains to enable smart contract functionality.

Ethereum originally operated a Proof-of-Work (PoW) consensus mechanism in imitation of Bitcoin and earlier blockchain networks. However, in December 2020, Ethereum switched to a Proof-of-Stake (PoS), which is considered more energy efficient and friendly to the blockchain’s end-game of being the best home for decentralized applications.

Notably, Ethereum has had its scalability challenges. It handles a small number of transactions per second, with fees typically soaring to unprecedented levels during periods of peak demand. The Ethereum developer community seeks to address these challenges by promoting the adoption of layer-2 networks. These include networks such as Optimism, Arbitrum, Base, etc., which offer cheap fees and faster settlements while inheriting Ethereum’s security.

The Ethereum Foundation acts as a steward for the Ethereum network. It oversees network improvements, funds development teams, and attracts new users to the Ethereum ecosystem.