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Ethereum vs Solana: A Comprehensive Comparison

Ethereum Solana has grown to establish itself as the second largest cryptocurrency after Bitcoin. It is usually the first choice for some blockchain developers who want to create applications. However, Ethereum has been faced with some limitations such as high cost of gas fees and low transaction speed. These limitations have led to rising of competitors in the blockchain marktet, and there are now alternatives who offers similar function at lower cost and much faster. Example of one of such alternatives is Solana.

What is Ethereum?

Ethereum is a decentralized open-source blockchain that Ethereum allows applications and smart contract built on it to run smoothly without downtime, central control, or fraud. It is powered by the Ether token which is its native cryptocurrency and second only to Bitcoin in market capitalization. Ethereum was launched in 2015 by two founders, Vitalik Buterin and Joe Lubin. Before Ethereum, a lot of people could not think of blockchain technology aside from being used for enabling cryptocurrency, but Buterin and Lublin were able to explore its further application.

What is Solana?

Solana is a public open-source blockchain that supports the creation of Dapps, NFTs, smart contracts, and different DeFi projects. Solana runs on the hybrid consensus of proof-of-stake (PoS) and proof-of-history (PoH)
Solana was created in 2017 during the initial coin offering (ICO) boom by Anatoly Yakovenko, a former Qualcomm executive. It was followed by a series of testnet phases before it was officially launched in 2020.

Difference between Ethereum and Solana

Ethereum and Solana differ in a lot of ways, the fundamental difference between the two is the underlying technology, and the problems the two are trying to solve. Let’s look at each of these differences below.

Mechanism

Ethereum uses Proof-of-Work consensus mechanism. Miners use their computational power to authenticate transactions and generate new blocks. They do this by using their computational power to solve mathematical puzzles. This help to secure the network and help to fulfill the purpose of having a decentralized network.
The major setback of PoW is that it only processes a few transactions and this has been slowing down the growth of the network.

Although, in the recent development, Ethereum is planning on what it called The Merge, which is a change in consensus mechanism where it will move finally from Proof-of-Work to Proof-of-Stake (PoS). The PoS
Solana on the other hand uses proof-of-history (POH) which creates historical records for each event that occurred at a specific moment in time. Unlike PoS and PoW in Ethereum, PoH uses a different mechanism, it uses the cryptographical solutions to track time by building timestamps in a blockchain network. The Solana PoH makes it more efficient, with high speed and low cost for transaction, but it is less secure.

Programming language

Developers create programs using smart contracts alongside blockchain technology. Solidity is the major programming language used in writing smart contracts are
For Solana, the common programming languages used are Rust, C, and C++.

Decentralization

The core center of blockchain technology is decentralization and this is one of the major differentiators between Ethereum and Solana. The goal of blockchain is to eliminate a central system such that transactions can be carried out without any need for intermediaries or any central control system

Downtime

Ever since its launch in 2014, Ethereum has never encountered any downtime even at the times when the network is congested. This is so because it is more significantly decentralized than other chains, which has also affected its scalability.
Solana was launched in 2020 and it has been down several times. The first Solana outage was in December 2020 which lasted for five hours but the funds were not lost. The second outage was in September 2021 and that lasted for 17 hours, though Solana lost some of its investors, but it didn’t lose any funds.

Transaction Cost

In terms of transaction costs, Solana is cheaper than Ethereum. The average gas fee of Solana stands at 0.00025 per transaction which is far less than Ethereum’s gas fee. This is a plus for Solana because paying high transaction fees is a big turn-off for a lot of people.

Transaction Speed

In comparing the speed of processing transactions, Solana comes ahead of Ethereum. Ethereum focuses on prioritizing decentralization and therefore its network architecture is geared towards this purpose. Solana is more concerned with achieving efficiency and scalability on its network. So, while Ethereum can process up to 30 TPS, Solana have the capacity to process up to 65, 000 TPS without risk of crashing. Although with the news of The Merge, the Ethereum network should be able to process up to 100, 000 TPS.

Developer Ecosystem

Ethereum has the largest community of developers across the entire blockchain development ecosystem. According to the 2021 developer report made available by the leading Web3 venture firm, Electric Capital, there are more than 18,400 active monthly developers across all chains. Ethereum alone accounted for more than 4,000 monthly active open-source developers, while Solana has around 1,000 active monthly developers.
Having a large active community of developers is a significant advantage to Ethereum as there are many hands working to ensure that the network keeps improving.

DeFi Ecosystem

Ethereum is more accepted in the decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystem than Solana and other chains. This is so because theirare are more developers to work on it and also because it has been around for a while. The majority of DeFi apps like MakerDAO, Uniswap, and Aave all run on the Ethereum network. Moreover, 2021 was the year of NFT and a lot of NFT marketplace were built on the Ethereum network. Though DeFi ecosystem on Solana is still at its early stage, it is trying to attract more developers to the network through marketing strategies like hackathons. With such a program in place, in a matter of time, Solana will have a good number of Dapps that can attract more users. Nevertheless, Solana still has a handful of projects built on it such as Star, Atlas, Serum and Audius
Market capitalization and price
As of August 2022, the Ethereum Market Cap is 227.58 billion while that of Solana is around 15.01 billion
Token type
The token native to the Ethereum blockchain network is Ether (ETH) and that of Solana is Solana (SOL)

Which is more popular between Ethereum and Solana?

Ethereum surely has more developers that use it compared to Solana. There are also more popular projects on Ethereum than on Solana. The main strength of Solana remains that it processes transactions faster and it is more cost-effective. However, with the plan of Ethererum to move from Proof-of-Work to Proof-of-Stake, the competition will become tougher for Solana.

Ethereum vs Solana: Which one is better?

The first point of action when deciding your choice is to clearly define the purpose of your project. exact features you want on the blockchain.
. Both Ethererum and Solana have their pros and cons, while Ethererum promises you a high level of security and it is more decentralized but it comes at a cost of decentralization, Solana focuses on cost-effectiveness and speed.
Developers will always be interested in the underlying technology which is a major consideration. Ethereum has been around since 2014 which means it has gained stability and is more famous among developers. Solana came in 2020 and it is still at its infancy stage, but it makes using blockchain affordable.

Ayodeji Akomolafe

Ayodeji is passionate about blockchain technology. He can write effortless on blockchain topics such as DeFi, DApp, NFTs, Crypto and Metaverse. Apart from writing long-form articles, he also write on crypto news and press release.

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