Ethereum Launches ‘Smart Accounts’ With ERC-4337 Standard

Mar. 2, 2023
Ethereum Launches ‘Smart Accounts’ With ERC-4337 Standard

The Ethereum platform has developed a new standard called ERC-4337, which has made it possible to create smart accounts, making it easier for people to use cryptocurrency.

On March 2nd, Yoav Weiss, a security researcher from the Ethereum Foundation, revealed that the core contracts for ERC-4337 have passed an audit by Open Zeppelin. This new standard is called “account abstraction” by blockchain developers.

The core contracts will now be available on various Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) compatible networks, including Polygon, Optimism, Arbitrum, BNB Smart Chain, Avalanche, and Gnosis Chain.

According to Weiss, new users will be able to set up a wallet and start using cryptocurrency without having to deal with complicated seed phrases or technical processes. 

If users lose their phone or device, they can use a time-locked social recovery method to recover their accounts. Weiss added:

It gives you the same features a bank would without having to trust a bank.

Two-Factor Authentication And Monthly Limits with Account Abstraction

The new ERC-4337 standard offers two-factor authentication, allowing users to sign transactions using their phone’s fingerprint or face scan. This feature aims to make cryptocurrency more convenient and accessible for everyone. 

Additionally, users can now set monthly spending limits on their accounts, and session keys allow them to play blockchain games without approving each transaction.

Account abstraction, on the other hand, turns smartphones into de facto hardware wallets by storing cryptographic keys for cryptocurrencies on standard smartphone security modules. Moreover, gas costs on the mainnet could be high initially, making it challenging for some users. Lower fees on other EVM chains and Layer 2 make it more feasible for users to adopt the new standard.

The proposal was reported by Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin, Weiss, and five others and used a decentralized infrastructure called “bundlers.” It’s been in the works since Buterin posted about it nine years ago, but previous proposals required complex changes to Ethereum.

A smart wallet signs a “user operation,” which goes to a special mempool, like a transaction queue. Bundlers are like miners who take user operations from the mempool. They also pay the gas fee and deliver the desired result to the wallet.  

Related Reading | The Enigma Of The Untouched Ethereum Wallet: From $75k To $400M in 9 Years

According to Weiss, the first bundler on mainnet is from Stackup, but others will be available soon. Anyone can run a bundler, and censoring it is impossible.

Furthermore, Smart accounts, or account abstraction, will be an essential focus for the crypto industry in 2023. StarkWare and zkSync, two zk-Rollup layer 2 solutions providers, have already integrated this technology. Visa has also created a system for automatically paying cryptocurrency bills that use this technology.


Kashif is a crypto-journalist with over 4 years of experience in the Cryptoverse. He began his career as a software engineer, but his curiosity towards decentralized technology lured him into the labyrinth of crypto, where he discovered a passion for reporting the latest news and developments in the field.