Polygon Supernets and Polygon zkEVM

Polygon Supernets and Polygon zkEVM

Bware Labs Team

5 min read

The Polygon team has released a series of technical innovations meant to keep pace with the latest Web3 tech advancements while trying to resolve two of the main challenges of the moment: modularization and scalability.

In this article, we will introduce Polygon Supernets and zkEVM, while presenting some of the strong points but also possible use cases and challenges.

Polygon Supernets

With the launch of Polygon Supernets, you can now seamlessly and fast create high-performance, customizable App-chains with compliance implementation options. Let’s dive in.

What are App-chains?

App-chains aim to provide a more flexible and scalable environment for the development of dApps. In an app-chain, each DApp operates on its own blockchain, which is connected to the main chain, allowing for greater customization and optimization for specific use cases.

Offering a more modular and adaptable framework that can improve performance, security, and user experience, developers can create more sophisticated and efficient dApps that can meet the demands of a growing user base.

What are Polygon Supernets?

Polygon Supernets are essentially a blockchain network powered by Polygon’s cutting-edge EVM client technology. After being built and deployed, they form a network of customized nodes that power an application-specific environment.

Polygon Supernets allow you to build and power your very own App-chains in a fast seamless way so that you can focus on your business model and user strategies. The app-chains that you build using Polygon Supernets are high-performing and customizable, and they offer compliance implementation options.

Benefits and Use Cases

Some of the main development challenges you might avoid by using Polygon Supernets: cold-start problem, lack of expertise, bootstrapping the network, and focus on GTM.

Using Polygon Supernets, you can create a custom, high-performance app-chain with compliance implementation options. It also allows progressive decentralization from the marketplace of validators as the app-chain scales and helps bootstrap validator sets with professional validators. All of this while having access to premium tools and services.

These are some of the use cases: gaming companies, enterprises, and successful Web3 projects.

Usage constraints:

  • The only supported runtime is EVM
  • EIP 1559 tokens are not supported today
  • Newly created native currency is needed as gas currency; existing tokens cannot be used
  • Not designed to allow end-users to deploy their own arbitrary smart contracts as they would on the mainnet
  • All validators must stake a minimum of 20,000 MATIC on the Ethereum mainnet in order to be
    validating the network
  • The validator MATIC rewards are envisioned to be decreasing over time, while your network is slowly expected to achieve on-chain rewards
  • 0 gas fees are not recommended although theoretically it can be set to zero

Polygon zkEVM

Polygon just launched zkEVM, harnessing the power of ZK proofs. It aims to lower transaction costs and significantly boost throughput, while also benefiting from the security of Ethereum L1.

To break it down for you, let’s define all these terms separately.

What does Zero Knowledge mean?

Zero-knowledge proofs allow for verifying the truthfulness of a statement while keeping the statement itself confidential. This is used in blockchain and zkEVM solutions to transmit the state transactions without revealing sensitive information.

What are ZK-rollups?

ZK-rollups are a type of Layer 2 scaling solution that enables Ethereum Mainnet to handle higher throughput by transferring computation and state storage to Layer 2. With ZK-rollups, numerous transactions can be processed in a single batch, and only a minimal summary of data needs to be submitted to Ethereum Mainnet.

If you want to learn more about ZK-rollups, read our full article where we explain in depth what they are and how they work.

What is a zkEVM rollup?

Now we can dive deeper into what a zkEVM is. zkEVMs are a type of ZK-rollup that is intended to replicate the same transaction execution environment as mainnet Ethereum. Different zkEVM implementations use different proving algorithms and data availability strategies.

Also, the degree of EVM-equivalence among zkEVMs varies. There are four major tiers of EVM-equivalence.

Polygon launched Polygon zkEVM to allow Ethereum developers to seamlessly deploy their smart contracts while inheriting Ethereum’s security with fast finality and low costs. Polygon zkEVM can easily be referred to as “the next chapter of Ethereum scaling”.

The next stage of optimizations for TPS performance and cost reduction starts with the launch of Polygon zkEVM on mainnet beta — a roadmap toward EVM-equivalence type 2 category zkEVM rollup.

While type 2 zkEVM rollups are intended to be EVM equivalent, they will not be fully Ether equivalent. To explain a bit what this means, the “inside” will be identical to Ether, but there will be some differences in terms of data structures — block structures and state trees — on the outside. This will offer full compatibility with already existing applications, while the minor modifications made to Ether will provide easier development and faster proof generation. If you want to know more about the different types of zkEVM, check out the explanation by Vitalik himself.

Deploying dApps on the Polygon zkEVM Mainnet Beta allows users to connect to the mainnet and bridge funds in a permissionless way. Even though this is all available to you, remember that it is still in a testing phase, so bugs and availability issues will potentially appear.

Benefits and Use Cases

What Polygon promises with the launch of Polygon zkEVM is EVM-equivalence’s frictionless scalability, the time-to-finality of ZK proofs, and all of this without even compromising Ethereum’s Layer 1 public protocol’s top-notch security.

Also, Polygon zkEVM brings down the cost for dApp users leading to mass adoption, while benefiting from the existing Ethereum dev tools and ecosystems. You can simply copy-paste your existing smart contracts and easily migrate any existing Ethereum application.

By doing this, Polygon makes a statement: “Web3 mass adoption has arrived”.

Polygon zkEVM can be used in many different industries thanks to its 3 main characteristics: scalability, time-to-finality speed, and high security. Some of the industries or domains that would most benefit from the improvements brought on by zkEvm would be: DeFi, Gaming, TradFi, Energy Infrastructure, Supply Chain, and Healthcare.

Conclusion

The path to high adoption of blockchain technology starts from shifting the models employed so far to more centric solutions that can serve general-purpose applications frictionlessly. The main concerns at the moment, as presented above, are related to financial and scalability problems encountered in the industry, which are improved/addressed by supernets/zk proofs.

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