May 15, 2023

Roll-ups As A Service: The Future Of Scalable Web3 Applications

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As the world of blockchain technology evolves, developers are constantly seeking ways to scale and secure dApps. One of the most promising solutions in recent years is the concept of "roll-ups." 

In this article , we will explore the potential of Roll-ups as a Service (RaaS), which aims to provide a scalable and secure framework for the next generation of Web3 applications. We will also list a few protocols that are making strides in this area.

What are Roll-ups?

Arbitrum: A beginner's guide to the next-generation layer 2 for Ethereum

Roll-ups are a Layer 2 scaling solution that compresses multiple transactions into a single "batch" before submitting them to Layer 1. These batches are then verified on Layer 1 using either Fraud Proof (Optimistic-rollup) or Validity Proof (ZK-rollup) to ensure the integrity of the transactions. 

This process allows roll-ups to achieve the same level of security as Layer 1 while significantly reducing transaction costs and increasing throughput.

The Emergence of RaaS

As roll-ups gain traction, it's becoming apparent that they have the potential to become a vital service for Web3 applications. Several projects are already working towards a future where roll-ups are integrated into blockchain ecosystems, offering developers and users the benefits of improved scalability and security. This is the core idea behind RaaS - a framework that makes it easy for dApps to leverage roll-ups for their specific use cases.

Protocols Leading the Way in RaaS


Ethereum Rollups: A simple explanation

Ethereum's rollup-centric roadmap focuses on incorporating multiple roll-ups into its ecosystem. By integrating roll-ups into its core infrastructure, Ethereum aims to provide a seamless experience for dApp developers and users alike, facilitating the transition to a more scalable and secure network.


On the Road to StarkNet: A Permissionless STARK-Powered L2 ZK-Rollup - Starknet

StarkNet, a project by StarkWare, envisions a Layer 3 architecture built on multiple application-specific roll-ups. This design allows for increased scalability and specialization, catering to the unique needs of various dApps while maintaining a high level of security and performance.


Another prominent project in the RaaS space is Arbitrum, an Optimistic-rollup solution developed by Offchain Labs. Arbitrum aims to provide a scalable and secure environment for building and deploying smart contracts on the Ethereum network while significantly reducing gas fees and transaction latency.

Challenges in Building RaaS

While RaaS offers a promising future for Web3 applications, it's not without its challenges. These areas need to be addressed:


Developing roll-up SDKs based on open-source projects is crucial for the widespread adoption of RaaS. At present, Optimistic-rollup SDKs are more easily built, but ZK-rollup SDKs hold more promise in the long run. Additionally, there is a need for developing ZKP-provable smart contracts (ZKVM).


The throughput of roll-ups is limited by Layer 1's storage space (Data Availability problem). Projects like Ethereum, Celestia, and Polygon Avail are working on expanding storage capacity and improving calculation speed for ZK-rollups to address these limitations.


A sustainable economic model for RaaS is required. One potential solution is to view roll-ups as native services provided by the blockchain, enabling a decentralized network with infinite scalability and rewarding both Layer 1 validators and Layer 2 roll-up operators.


Implementing cross-rollup protocols for multiple roll-ups on a single blockchain is crucial for seamless interoperability. Developing native cross-rollup bridges maintained by validators would provide added security and enable synchronous message calls between roll-ups.


RaaS is an exciting development in the world of blockchain technology, offering a path to scalable and secure Web3 applications. As we continue to overcome the challenges associated with engineering, performance, economics, and functionality, RaaS will play a pivotal role in shaping the future of decentralized ecosystems, enabling a more interconnected, efficient, and user-friendly experience for developers and end-users alike.