ELI5: What is zkSync?

TL;DR: zkSync (built by Matter Labs) is an L2 protocol for scalable low-cost payments on Ethereum, powered by ZkRollup technology. zkSync launched its v1.0 on mainnet on June 18th.

What’s unique about zkSync?
Since it builds on ZkRollup tech, zkSync can function without a challenge/withdrawal period (dispute game). This near-instant transaction finality differentiates zkSync from many other L2 scaling solutions.

Why use ZkRollups?
In a ZkRollup, external validators generate Zk-proofs of state transitions and submit them on-chain. Proofs are instantly verified by a Rollup contract on Ethereum. Assuming that the Zk-proofs only include valid transactions, its is extremely difficult to manipulate blocks.

How secure is zkSync compared to other L2 scaling techniques?
Zk-proof-based systems take a pro-active approach to security (blocks are final), while other dispute-based systems employ a reactive approach to security (blocks can be disputed).

What assets does zkSync support?
zkSync can be used to transfer ETH & ERC20 tokens. Currently, new tokens are proposed and approved by the operator (Matter Labs). This process will eventually become community-governed.

What does it cost to transact on zkSync?
Users that wish to transact on zkSync pay a small fee to the external validators that generate the Zk-proofs (~$0.001). Since the on-chain transaction costs are divided between all transactions within the Zk-Sync block, users are able to to save on total transaction costs.

How can I use zkSync?
Move your assets off-chain by making a deposit to zkSync from your Ethereum wallet (e.g.MetaMask). Now, the real-time balances are only visible in the zkSync wallet and zkSync’s own block explorer:

zkSync’s block explorer

What’s on the roadmap?
Initially zkSync focuses on enabling faster payments. The goal is to eventually scale smart contracts.

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