Layer 1 blockchains (L1) or first-generation blockchains such as Ethereum, have long experienced a blockchain trilemma – scalability, decentralization, and security. This compels ETH to sacrifice one of these features to function effectively.
For example, Ethereum trade scalability for security and decentralization. Though ETH stores data in a secure and distributed ledger, these networks experience low transaction speeds as network users have been increasing steadily.
This problem has led to the development and rise of L2 protocols especially on the Ethereum network to help solve the trilemma trouble.
But what are layer 2 protocols?
Layer 2 protocols are secondary frameworks that are built on top of an existing blockchain (Layer one e.g. Ethereum).
The primary objective of these layer 2 protocols is to increase scalability and transaction speed off-chain while offering security & maintaining the decentralized nature of the blockchain.
Arbitrum, Optimism, Polygon, zkSync, Starkware etc. are Layer 2 protocols on ETH.
What is zkSync?
zkSync is a layer 2 trustless protocol offering scalable, low-cost payments on Ethereum, fueled by zkRollup technology.
It does this without compromising the security of the Ethereum network.
Emphasis on zkRollup technology.
Rollup - Rollups process transactions outside of Layer 1 networks (ETH, in this case) and send the data to the ETH mainnet where they are validated.
However, there are 2 different rollups existent on the ETH network:
- Optimistic Rollups - Used by Optimism, Arbitrum.
- zkRollups - Used by zkSync.
zkRollups are way cheaper, scalable, faster in processing transactions and secure than their counterpart.
Now, you see why this is a game changer for zkSync.
The Matter Labs team has announced a potential airdrop of the zkSync token.
However, it’s important to discern that the token has not been launched yet. Mainnet will be live in 16 days.
How do I get myself positioned for the airdrop, you ask?
Here’s a link to a YouTube video that will guide you on all you need to know regarding getting yourself positioned for the zkSync Era token airdrop…
Key Takeaways :
Layer 1s are accountable for security, data availability and decentralization as Layer 2s handle transaction scaling.
Layer 2 crypto projects have been gaining traction and usage because of Ethereum’s high gas fees and slow processing speeds.