The long-awaited deposit contract for Ethereum 2.0 has finally been rolled out, opening the doors to staking opportunities for ETH holders.

The deposits started in earnest, with over $ 1 million worth of ETH in the deal within the first half hour, according to to observer The Crypto Cactus.

“$ 1,000,000 stuck in $ ETH 2.0 in 30 minutes… Remember that for anyone staking, a one-way bridge. I sent 32 ETH. “

At the time of writing, around eight hours after the official announcement, just over 14,000 ETHs have been staked, according to the ETH 2 Launchpad. At today’s prices, that works out to about $ 5.5 million. For the Beacon Chain Mainnet Genesis Event to kick off, 524,288 ETH from 16,384 validators are required.

The Ethereum team and several members of the community have targeted December 1 as the date when this will happen. The target amount must be in the contract seven days before the launch of Phase 0, otherwise it will be delayed by one week until the threshold is reached.

The launch of the deposit contract sparked a staking debate within the crypto community, and there seems to be some hesitation among regular investors so far. In its third quarter DeFi report, ConsenSys suggested that higher yield opportunities in DeFi could hinder participation in staking.

For comparison, the $ 5 million deposited is only a third of what DeFi degens dumped into the unaudited, unreleased and hacked Eminence contract while developer Andre Cronje slept.

Part of the reluctance could be that ETH staked on Beacon Chain needs to be locked up for a long time, leading some to question whether the returns justify the means. The ETH 2 Launchpad explains:

“Transfers between validators are disabled at least until phase 1. Validators will have to wait until phase 2 (approximately two years) to be able to withdraw to a specific partition.”

Die-hard etherites like Ethhub founder and Daily Gwei author Anthony Sassano remain unfazed.

Ethereum advocate Ryan Sean Adams, who recently released a how-to guide for those considering staking, described it’s like:

“This is the initial bond offering for the world’s largest non-sovereign economy the world has ever known.”

Yearly returns decline rapidly, however, with the more ETH involved. Five million ETH wagered will yield around 7%, which will drop to just under 5% when 10 million ETH is wagered.

Right now, there is a lot of excitement in the Ethereum community as many have waited so long for things to happen on ETH 2.0. ETH prices reacted to the news with a 5% jump in the past 24 hours to hit $ 405.