Frequently Asked Questions
I'm an app developer. Why should I choose Aurora over other EVMs?
Aurora was built by the same team that created the NEAR Protocol, considered to be among the most highly regarded blockchain technologies in the crypto space. Although created at NEAR, Aurora will be exist as a separate entity, governed by the decentralized AuroraDAO, and will leverage the unique underlying NEAR technologies to align incentives of the network, product owners, and end users. When you choose to deploy your app on Aurora, you’re partnering with a highly-capable and dedicated organization, and building upon a technical foundation that will scale to meet all your future needs.
What are the basic performance metrics?
Aurora is a major use case for the NEAR blockchain that requires many changes on different levels. At the moment we’re waiting for NEAR validators to accept the protocol change that will add EVM precompiles. We expect this to happen in the first half of the summer. After this protocol upgrade one can expect Aurora to be able to host twice the throughput of the Ethereum Mainnet. There’s still a lot of room for a single-shard Aurora improvement, so we expect further throughput increases.
How will transaction fees work?
The base fee token of Aurora is ETH, which will make your users feel right at home. By leveraging the underlying low-cost capabilities of the NEAR Protocol, Aurora transactions will typically cost pennies. What’s particularly interesting, is that the underlying fee model of NEAR opens the door to innovative possibilities, such as AuroraDAO directed mechanisms of channeling a portion of collected fees back to the projects running on Aurora!
What does the high-level roadmap look like?
While the detailed Aurora roadmap is available on the web site, in general, over the course of summer we plan to optimise Aurora and take care of the DAO formation and token development (if this is decided by the DAO). In Autumn, we plan to deliver several major features, such as introduction of fast bridging of the most popular tokens, ability to pay fees in stable coins and simplified UX for non-blockchain users. We’re planning to deliver a sharded version of Aurora early next year.
How do I get started with Aurora?
The Aurora EVM has been deployed on the NEAR Mainnet and Testnet networks. Asset connectors—e.g. our “ETH Connector” and “ERC-20 Connectors”—allow asset transfers between Aurora and Ethereum, using the Aurora Bridge. Currently, the ETH Connector is deployed and functional on Testnet, with the ERC-20 Connector soon to follow. In this way, project owners should be able to test their deployments on Aurora fully in May, followed by production deployments in June of 2021. For those interested in getting started, a set of Aurora Documents is currently available.
How will bridging tokens between Ethereum and Aurora work?
Very easy! You'll select the direction of transfer, the token you want to transfer, and the amount. Your address on Aurora will be the same as your Ethereum address. The Aurora Bridge will initially work with MetaMask. To access your tokens and apps on Aurora, you’ll need to add Aurora as an additional network to MetaMask, and the Bridge will help you with that.
Which tokens will be supported?
Initially, ETH—the base fee token of Aurora—will be supported, followed by a select list of popular ERC-20 tokens, and then any arbitrary assets. This rollout is planned to take place during May and June of 2021.
How long will transfers take?
To ensure security, transfers to Aurora take about 10 minutes, and transfers back to Ethereum take about a day. As you can see from our roadmap, we’ll be dramatically improving those transfer times by Autumn of 2021.
Why will transfers take so long?
The Aurora Bridge technical architecture is designed to be “trustless”, meaning there’s no reliance on third-parties for authorizations. Trustless transfers align with the ethos of decentralized finance, but do require more time, given that network confirmations to ensure transaction finality. There are, however, technical ways in which we can, and will, shorten transfer times in future updates to the bridge.
Will I be able to initiate multiple transfers in parallel?
Yes! Since confirmation of transfer can take a while, you’ll be able to initiate any number of concurrent transfers.