Polygon vs Arbitrum vs Optimism – Comparing Ethereum’s Layer-2 Solutions

Polygon vs Arbitrum vs Optimism-Comparing Ethereum’s Layer-2 Solutions!


The advent of the internet way back in the 90s led to a new discovery of a new era which is now slowly being digitally transformed. Meanwhile, the invention of the blockchain & main cryptos has transformed payment mechanisms over time. Hence cryptos are been slowly accepted globally and have also been regulated as legal tender in many countries. 

Earlier, Bitcoin & Ethereum were considered the top blockchains, but in recent times, many such chains have been deployed which are claimed to be more efficient than these chains. Some of them are Solana, Polkadot, Polygon, Arbitirum, Optimism, Cosmos, etc and many more which are offering very tough competition for the primitive chains. 

Let’s have a look at 3 of such chains, Polygon, Arbitrum & Optimism to make out in what way these chains are better than the other popular blockchains and also among themselves. 

Key Takeaways

  • The Arbitrum chain which works for Ethereum is the fastest of all the three chains, claiming new highs every new day 
  • Polygon & Optimism which functions as layer-2 solutions for Ethereum have also marked their strong existence in recent times

What is Polygon?

Polygon is one of the best  ‘2-layer’ or a ‘sidechain’ scaling solutions that work alongside the Ethereum network, enabling faster transactions at affordable costs. The chain works parallelly with the Ethereum network and to use the chain one can easily bridge their cryptos over to Polygon and interact with the wide range of Ethereum-based crypto apps. 

The Polygon chain uses the Proof-of-Stake mechanism aiming to scale Ethereum with its abundance of sidechains which are intending to unclog with the main platform in an effective & cost-efficient manner. The chain presently carries out nearly 7000+ TPS in comparison with 15 TPS of that of Ethereum, while the average block processing time is around 2 seconds. 

Unique Features of Polygon

  • Polygon’s architecture is made up of multiple layers, the Ethereum layer being the most prominent one, followed by the security layer, the Polygon-Network layer, and finally the Execution layer.
  • The main feature of the Polygon Chain is the Sidechains, which transact quickly with low-cost finality on the main chain & Ethereum being the first suitable layer-1 base chain
  • At the core of the network is the Polygon Software Development kit (SDK) which can be used to build Ethereum-compatible decentralized applications as sidechains & connect them to the main chain
  • The polygon sidechains can be built using either of the scalability methods like Plasma chains, zk-Rollups or optimistic Rollups. 

Read more: Polygon whitepaper summary 

What is Arbitrum

Arbitrum is a scaling solution that sits above the base layer of the Ethereum blockchain offering cheap & fast transactions. It is designed to enhance the Ethereum Smart contracts in terms of speed while adding additional privacy features.  It uses a unique technique to make the transactions on Ethereum more scalable and inexpensive. 

The chain uses a technology known as an Optimistic Rollup which interacts between the two chains. While the transaction processing will be completed at layer 2 and Arbitrum records the results in the main chain. The chain aims to drastically increase its working speed & efficiency with this process. 

Unique Features of Arbitrum

  • Arbitrum is considered to be the most EVM-compatible rollups at the bytecode level where-in any language that can compile to EVM can be used
  • The team behind Arbitrum is working hard to minimize the barriers by producing comprehensive documentation for the developers
  • The chain supports low fees compared to that of Ethereum using its extremely efficient roll-up technology. The chain is able to cut the fees into fractions while providing sufficient incentives for validators

What is Optimism

Similar to Arbitrum, Optimism is also a layer-2 scaling solution for Ethereum which helps to reduce the transaction fees & time on the Ethereum chain without sacrificing decentralization & security. It handles the transactions off the Ethereum chain while taking the advantage of its infrastructure. 

Optimism communicates with Ethereum’s layer-1 chain which handles security, decentralization & data availability, while Optimism handles the layer-2 scaling solution. In short, Optimism reduces the load from Ethereum by removing the burden of the financial transactions which reduces the congestion from the network. 

Unique Features of Optimism

  • Optimism can achieve 10x to 100x improvement in scalability 
  • It can reduce the fees with its rolling technology 
  • The chain is highly secured as it is built on top of Ethereum and the transactions are settled on Ethereum mainnet 
  • It offers enhanced user experience with new projects being benefited with lower fees & faster transactions

Pros & Cons of Polygon vs Arbitrum vs Optimism


Polygon Arbitrum Optimism
It is more secure due to the validation system It offers 100 times the throughput with only 2% of the fees EVM equivalence focuses on going one-step ahead 
It uses a joint system of PoS & Hemidall architecture which increases the scalability & power As it is completely deentralized, the KYC requirement is eliminated High secured data
The mutli-chain system allows Polygon to access & use the full power of Ethereum A good ecosystem with powerful tools Faster transactions with low costs
Polygon offers a similar experience to that of Ethereum Higjh EVM compatibility 


Polygon Arbitrum Optimism
If Ethereum 2.0 is developed completely, Polygon’s existence may be challenged in the coming days Does not have any native token Long & costly withdrawals
It is ethereum dependant The Arbitrum gas fees are different from the Ethereum gas fees, serving a different purpose Potential incentive misalignment between network participants 
There is high competition among the other scaling networks like Polkadot, Solana, etc Underlying L1 censoring transactions

Polygon VS Arbitrum VS Optimism: Comparative Analysis

Name Polygon Arbitrum Optimism
Lauch Date 2017 28 May 2021 December 2021
Founder Sandeep Nailwal Steven Goldfeder Jinglan Wang
Blockchain Protocol Polygon Chain working for Ethereum Mainnet Arbitrum Chain working for Ethereum Mainnet Optimism Chain working for Ethereum Mainnet
Native Token MATIC NA OP
Token Type ERC-20 NA ERC-20
Market Cap $7.89 billion NA $244.79 million
Circulating Supply 8.73 billion NA 234.78 million
Max Supply 10 billion NA 4.29 billion
Consensus Method PoS PoS Optimistic Rollup
Architecture Multi-layer Architecture Arbi-turm Virtual Machine Architecture Optimistic Architecture
Scalability Layer-2 scaling solution Layer-2 scaling solution Layer-2 scaling solution
Transaction Speed 65000 TPS 40000 TPS 2000 to 2000 TPS
Active Addresses 137.91K NA 6167

Should You Invest In/Difference Between Polygon vs Arbitrum vs Optimism 

Observing the fundamentals & the working mechanisms, all three blockchains appear to be equally important and secure. To have a deeper knowledge to choose the best among them, let us know the major differences between them

Consensus Mechanism

Ethereum which worked earlier on the Proof-of-Work mechanism has recently transited to the Proof-of-Stake consensus mechanism. Polygon also uses the same PoS mechanism, whereas both Arbiturm & Optimism use the Optimistic roll-ups. 

Transaction Speed & Scalability

The transaction speed of Ethereum was very low and hence the layer-2 solution chains addressed the issue. While Arbitrum can carry out nearly 40K TPS, Optimism 2K TPS, Polygon is the fastest among the 3 with nearly 65K TPS. As Polygon processes the highest transactions of all, the scalability issues remain highly negligible, having access to faster transactions.

Top Projects Built on Polygon, Arbitrium & Optimism

  • Some of the top projects built on Polygon include: Jellyswap, QuickSwap, Opacity, etc
  • Projects on Arbitrum include: Vesta Finance, Umami finance, Premia, Y2K Finance 
  • Optimism projects include a collection of decentralized application categorized as DeFi, NFTs, Bridges, Wallets, tools, portfolio trackers, etc

Polygon Price Analysis

Source: Tradingview

  • The MATIC price has been highly incremental ever since it bounced off from the lows in June 2022
  • Trading within a bullish ascending pennant, the MATIC price is fast approaching the pinnacle of triangle 
  • The price is expected to remain under $1 for another couple of weeks and pull a significant leg up as the trade apprahces the yearly close.

Read more: Polygon MATIC Price Prediction

Optimism Price Analysis

Source: Tradingview

  • Optimism price, on the contrary, has been trading under huge bearish captivity within an expanding descending channel
  • Presently, the price is hovering along the average range displaying the possibility both surging towards the resistance & plunging down to the support
  • In case of a jump, the price may head towards $1.4, else a drop could drag the price lower to hit $0.4.

Read more: Optimism Price Prediction

Tips for Trading in Polygon, Arbitrium & Optimism

Before diving into trading in Polygon, Arbitrum, or Optimism it is imperative to do thorough research and gain a deep knowledge of the market conditions & sentiments. Fundamental knowledge plays a pivotal role in understanding the next price action of the token. Therefore, before entering into any trade, it is important to have deeper research on all aspects.

How to Invest in Polygon, Arbitrium & Optimism

Investing in Polygon or Arbitrum or Optimism is extremely simple & safe. All you need to do is,

Read more: Ethereum vs Polygon

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