The Ethereum Metropolis (Byzantium) upgrade adds a new cryptographic tool (zk-SNARKs) that was pioneered by Zcash. The addition of zk-SNARK technology into Ethereum is another validation, like the JP Morgan partnership, that privacy and auditability are important for business and for the economy, and that zk-SNARKs are the premier technology for privacy and auditability.
We’re happy to see the spread of this powerful technology, we’re proud to have helped Ethereum with this project, and we’re looking forward to seeing what the devs who program The Ethereum World Computer do with it.
It’s important to note that the addition of the zk-SNARK technology does not by itself provide privacy protection for Ethereum users. There is a new tool in the toolbox, but for now Ethereum transactions are no more private than before.
With Zcash today, people are receiving, holding, and sending money under the protection of encryption. Zcash is like SSL was for the early World Wide Web — a way to protect your data from bad actors and enable commerce. Zcash has been serving an active and growing base of users for almost one year.
Unlike Ethereum, Zcash is not a general-purpose World Computer; it is just a global, open payment network.
We’re already hard at work on our next generation cryptography, which greatly improves the efficiency, to enable smartphone users. Going forward, we’ll continue to improve the technology, continue to provide a safe and useful network for our growing global community, and continue to cooperate with other projects like Ethereum that are contributing in their own way to the betterment of humanity. We’ll also continue to work on new technologies that could connect the Ethereum and Zcash currencies and blockchains.