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Since Ethereum launched, the smart contracts platform has had its ups and downs, yet it seems like it is now reaching for the starts. Recent reports indicate that the value of Ether, the crypto-fuel or digital currency of Ethereum has just managed to soar to over $80, and surpass the $7 billion market cap.

This is huge, considering the fact that last year, bitcoin has managed to surpass the $7 billion market cap, and today, its own market cap is above $35 billion. Last night alone, Ether managed to increase 20% in value, from $70 to around $85, thus surpassing its all-time high again.

While economic analysts aren’t yet sure about what encouraged such as increase in the price, it is worth pointing out that there may be several factors involved. One of the main ones would be South Korea, which is showing Ethereum a lot of love. As the people of South Korea have a passion for e-sports, it seems like through its smart contracts, Ethereum can provide more transparency in video games, while also reducing the amount of cheating that can take place.

Not only this, but South Korea is also robotically-advanced, and Ethereum could provide further possibilities in this market, by allowing robots to hold, transfer and even accept value. In return, this will help add an entirely new dimension to the extent of their possibilities, which is great news for the market.

Some of the other contributing factors worth mentioning include the fact that Spotify has recently purchased an Ethereum-based company, alongside with the other ecosystems being developed, which are mainly situated around Ethereum, hence the gain in value.

Apart from this aspect, reports also indicate that the team behind the smart contracts platform is ready to adopt the proof-of-stake concept, which would replace the proof-of-work protocol currently functioning on the Ethereum blockchain. The main difference in this case is that proof-of-work is often difficult to produce, yet easy to verify and read. Proof-of-stake on the other hand, will make both producing and reading easier, and faster at the same time, thus benefiting the overall Ethereum ecosystem. Some other advantages such as energy efficiency and security will also be provided through this new protocol. The Ethereum Foundation promised that the change will take place by the end of 2017, but it’s likely that it will end up happening much faster, which is great news.

In a recent press statement, the creator of Ethereum Vitalik Buterin stated that ‘We have seen great progress for Ethereum research, and we are excited that the protocol is moving closer and closer to the point where it is ready for mainstream adoption. Progress on consensus algorithms, privacy, zero knowledge proofs and formal verification is happening at increasing speed, and our research and development teams are expanding substantially.”

Regardless of what others may say about Ethereum, it is important to be aware of the fact that during 2017 alone, the value of its crypto-fuel, ether, has managed to grow from $8, to over $80 in value, which is a huge gain for a newly-released currency on the market.

Based on everything that has been outlined so far, what do you personally think about the recent Ethereum developments, and its soar in value? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

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By Daniel Dob

Daniel is a digital currency expert, consultant and content writer. So far, he has racked up seven years of freelance writing experience, and he’s spent the last three working as a cryptocurrency journalist. Other niches that he has a passion for include finance, blockchain technology and business.

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