Ethereum developers agreed to move the Shanghai hard fork to March 2023. There will be only one significant code change in the Shanghai upgrade that will enable validators to withdraw staked ETH. The call was decided by the developers.
Developers had hoped to incorporate a set of Ethereum(ETH) Improvement Proposals (EIPs) known as EVM Object Format (EOF) into the Shanghai upgrade but decided against it. According to developers working on EOF testing, including the feature would push the hard fork by at least a month.
EOF would introduce a new contract format for the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), which supports decentralized applications and smart contracts. The implementation of EOF would change Ethereum’s transaction format to distinguish between smart contract code and data. It would also make future upgrades to the EVM easier.
Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder of Ethereum, was also concerned about the consequences of rushing the implementation of EOF. He stated that developers agreed in December that enabling staked ETH withdrawals would be the top priority for Q1 2023. As a result, developers decided to exclude EOF in order to avoid delays in staked ETH withdrawal timelines.
Ethereum developers have decided to reconsider including EOF with the proto-danksharding upgrade, which will most likely be released 3-4 months after Shanghai. The uncertainty surrounding the unlocking period of staked ETH caused investors to become concerned about the network’s future. Allowing withdrawals will thus provide much-needed relief to ETH investors. However, some analysts believe that the unstacking event will cause a mass exodus and intense sell pressure on ETH, driving the asset’s price down.