In the context, Ethereum has to be ported from the original chain to the ETH2 chain so that validators, or complete node operators, can engage in block validation. The code states that there should be at least 16,384 validators operating 32 ETH each before the update can be properly launched. If the mark is not met, others worried that the coins will be stuck in the limbo.
Speaking in a recent Ethereum Foundation “ask me anything” on Reddit, EF researcher Danny Ryan said that the threshold can be adjusted if needed to ensure that ETH2 actually sees genesis:
“I personally think that for initial launch, the 100k+ ETH in the contract is sufficient, and that adjusting the threshold down to not leave that ETH in limbo for too long makes sense. Rewards will be very high for these early adopters and the ETH validating will likely grow over time. Planning on adjusting this constant immediately at November 24 or December 1 is a bit aggressive, imo. We don’t know exactly what will happen in the next couple of weeks so we should observe first. On that linked to thread, clients engineering teams seem to want to wait through December, and adjust the constant at the start of January if needbe. This seems reasonable.”
Vitalik Buterin, founder of Ethereum, also touched on the launch in the Reddit thread. Commenting on testnets for ETH2, he said: “Personally I actually hope that once we have a testnet for “eth1 inside eth2″, it can end up replacing some of the existing testnets! This would serve two purposes simultaneously: (i) it would satisfy people’s need for an ethereum testing environment and (ii) it would test many parts of the merge implementaiton. We could even perform the merge as an entire procedure on the Ropsten or other testnet!”
The ETH2 deposit contract is expected to see an influx of liquidity as the launch nears to successfully activate the upgrade.