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  • The Nimbus team is now preparing to deliver and participate in a multi-client network.
  • Though running eth2 on mobile devices increases accessibility, it comes with risks related to bandwidth usage and battery life.

One of the top Ethereum 2.0 clients, Nimbus, is working on the first Ethereum 2.0 testnet on a mobile device as Phase 0 moves through its testing period. Mamy Ratsimbazafy, Nimbus network engineer, tweeted:

The #ethnimbus team is currently meeting in Brussels, playing with the first mobile #Eth2 testnet.

In 2018, Nimbus was founded by Status Network. It is building an Eth2 client and opened a Nimbus-to-Nimbus testnet in March 2019. In January 2020, it was given a grant of $650,000 by the Ethereum Foundation to continue its Eth2 work. Ratsimbazafy told The Block that since the beginning of testing, developers have discovered multiple bugs in the system and are working to fix them. He added that to uncover additional deficiencies, the team needs to implement fuzzing. Fuzzing is a testing method that sends random inputs into the network to trigger corner cases. 

Although up until now, the testing has been focusing on Eth2 specifications, a fully-featured client has to ensure that other elements such as peer discovery and handling, monitoring, performance, automation are intact too. Ratsimbazafy further added:

The team’s priorities for 2020 are to deliver and participate in a multiclient testnet with both desktop and mobile nodes, to audit and secure the client, to start implementing phase 1 and phase 2 of Ethereum 2.

As the majority of internet users are migrating from desktops to mobile devices, the team hopes to ensure that Eth2 is built with mobile constraints from the get-go, clarified Ratsimbazafy. The network engineer said:

If we want to reach those communities, blockchain needs to be mobile. This is even more important as often there is distrust in the centralized services and actors in those parts of the world.

Though running the client in a mobile-friendly environment offers convenience and better accessibility, it comes with several risks. These risks include data consumption, battery drain, and dealing with ephemeral presence. Developers are currently working to resolve these problems. Speaking for the team, Ratsimbazafy concluded:

As [Phase 0] deployment approaches, we will increase our automated testing to cover a large range of mobile devices. However, we won’t be able to test all the thousands of phone models that exist.