The bitcoin price has climbed by around 70% since the beginning of 2023 while the ethereum price is up by 50%, putting crypto at a "pivotal moment."
Now, the chief executive of Coinbase, Brian Armstrong, has confirmed the major U.S. bitcoin and crypto exchange will integrate bitcoin's Lightning Network, designed to help it scale, while ethereum is hurtling toward its Shanghai upgrade, allowing users to withdraw their staked ethereum.
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"Lightning is great and something we'll integrate," Armstrong told a Twitter user who had questioned why the Coinbase founder had never posted about the technology without specifying when the San Francisco-based exchange will add support for the bitcoin upgrade.
The Lightning Network, a so-called layer-2 solution that sits on top of the bitcoin blockchain, was first proposed by two academics in 2016 to help facilitate cheaper and faster bitcoin transactions that happen away from bitcoin's main layer and allow the cryptocurrency to better compete with ethereum, other new cryptocurrencies and traditional payment networks like Visa.
Confirmation that Coinbase will follow other bitcoin and crypto exchanges in supporting the Lightning Network has been welcomed by the bitcoin and crypto community.
"Looking forward to see Lightning support on Coinbase," Gabor Gurbacs, a crypto entrepreneur and advisor to investment manager VanEck, posted to Twitter. "Bitfinex has done a great job with Lightning earlier."
Meanwhile, analysts expect ethereum's Shanghai upgrade this week to pile pressure on the market as almost 1.3 million of ethereum currently "staked" on the network is unlocked. Staked ethereum has allowed holders to help secure the ethereum network in return for rewards.
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"1.1 million ethereum related to partial reward withdrawals could face the market, while Celsius [Network] is likely to sell its 158,000 staked balance as part of its bankruptcy processm," analysts at K33 Research said in a note to clients seen by Coindesk this week. "These two numbers represent nearly 1.3 million ethereum or approximately $2.4 billion worth of potential sell-side pressure to face the market."
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