The Ethereum network is a fascinating ecosystem, although one that is often far too expensive to use. Surprisingly, the median gas usage has hit a long-term low today despite the mean transaction volume hitting a three-year high. An unusual correlation between these two different metrics, although one most people will not mind at all.
A Steep Median Gas Usage Decline
For the longest time, Ethereum users had had to deal with expensive transaction fees. One aspect influencing those prices is gas usage. More network transactions lead to higher gas usage, slowly increasing the fees for all network participants. The system has received multiple forms of criticism and will eventually be revamped through protocol upgrades.
With that in mind, it is all the stranger to see Ethereum note a 22-month low for median gas usage. This does not mean the network has become cheaper to use, as users were still paying over $250 in fees yesterday afternoon. A ludicrous amount, yet there isn’t much anyone can do about it until the network achieves the next level of scalability.
The current median gas usage low sits at 27.880 per the seven-day moving average. A substantial decrease from the levels of over 40,000 recorded in late 2020 and early 2021. Since January 2021, the median gas usage has been declining slowly, which is a rather healthy sign for the overall network. This number needs to keep decreasing to make transactions more viable, however.
It is always challenging to determine what may trigger a decline in median gas usage. Per ETHGasstation, the “leaderboard” of gas users has not changed all that much. Uniswap, Tether, and 1INCH continue to spend the most Ether on gas. However, the average gwei prices are coming down a touch, which is good to see. There is still plenty of room for future improvements, however.
Mean Transaction Volume Rises
Contrary to what most people may expect, there is still an increase in Ethereum spending. More specifically, the mean transaction volume sits at a three-year high. A remarkable development, as there doesn’t appear to be a real need for such a steep value increase all of a sudden. Although this increase has been brewing for a while, network activity has picked up recently.
More specifically, the mean transaction volume went from just under $12,500 to $18,660.44 in rapid succession. Although Ethereum has surpassed $4,000 recently, this increase primarily occurred after the markets collapsed in recent days. More value is moving across the network all of a sudden, which is fascinating to observe.
Crucial times are ahead for Ethereum. Current network fees remain on the high end of the spectrum, which is far from ideal. Ethereum developers may resolve those issues in the near future thanks to some upgrades. Until then, however, it will remain hit-and-miss for users and developers alike. A new rise in median gas usage is the last thing the network needs.