That escalated quickly. Ethereum.org has announced they have received enough deposited ETH to launch the Beacon Chain on December 1st, 2020. This is no small feet as the required amount is 524,288 ETH.
The Ethereum Network reaching this milestone looked somewhat doubtful at the beginning of the week, as the chart below shows from Dune Analytics. On November 20th, only a little over 100K ETH were staked. However, at the beginning of the week, ETH deposits starting rushing in with 88,000 ETH coming in on November 21st and 177,248 on November 23rd. As of writing 231,936 ETH were deposited on November 24th, clearing the hurdle needed for the Beacon Chain to launch.
This is exciting news for the Ethereum network and community. This will be the first phase of planned upgrades to the platform over the next couple years. These upgrades will allow Ethereum to scale, introduce sharding and perhaps most significantly transition from a proof of work to a proof of stake consensus algorithm.