Cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex launched an Ethereum 2.0 staking service following the recent launch of the preliminary version of Ethereum’s proof-of-stake network.
According to an announcement shared with Modern Consensus on Dec. 24, Ethereum 2.0 staking is now live on Bitfinex. The service said it aims to make ether (ETH) staking easy for the company’s customers:
“Users staking ETH 2.0 on Bitfinex will find an easy to use interface simplifying the staking mechanism and removing the technical hurdles associated with setting up and running a validator node.”
The transition to the Ethereum 2.0 proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchain is a long-awaited, and long-delayed, move to deal with the No. 2 blockchain’s growing congestion, which is causing delays and very high transaction costs. It will also be a much more eco-friendly version of Ethereum, which currently burns through almost as much electricity for mining as the entire country of Slovenia uses annually.
While Bitfinex launched its support for Ethereum 2.0 in short order after the network’s Dec. 1 launch, it was not the first crypto exchange to do so. As Modern Consensus reported at the end of November, Huobi was so proactive that it announced support for the PoS blockchain even before it launched. All of this contributed to the new network growing fast, crossing 1 million ETH staked in just 11 days after launch.
Staked ether are locked on the Ethereum 2.0 beacon chain, so they are not completely accessible. Still, Bitfinex aims to allow users to exit their Ethereum 2.0 staking positions by enabling them to sell their ETH 2.0 and the related rewards on the firm’s peer-to-peer trading market.
Bitfinex users can convert their ether into ETH 2.0 using the dedicated currency conversion tool on the exchange’s wallet page. Bitfinex users who hold ether on the trading platform can receive staking rewards on their tokens with no minimum capital requirement. The coins will be staked in batches of 32 ETH on a first-come, first-served basis.
In estimating the staking rewards, the firm predicted profits of up to 10% per year
That said, Bitfinex’s warned that “ETH Staking is highly experimental and risky,” advising users to “independently assess, understand and accept the related risks before deciding to stake.”
Finally, the exchange noted that its Ethereum 2.0 staking service won’t be accessible to residents of Canada or the United States.