James Bachini

Account Abstraction – ERC4337

Account Abstraction

ERC4337 is an Ethereum standard that achieves account abstraction on the protocol without any consensus-layer changes. Deployed on the Ethereum mainnet in March 2023, ERC4337 makes it possible to transact and create contracts in a single contract account.

Account abstraction opens the door to user-friendly crypto wallet designs that could potentially facilitate broader adoption.

  1. How ERC4337 Works
  2. Account Abstraction Use Cases
  3. Building Bundlers
  4. Conclusion

How ERC4337 Works

The Ethereum protocol uses an account-based model, ERC4337 combines features of the protocol’s two existing account types:

  • Externally Owned Accounts (EOA) – are owned and controlled by users (like your Metamask wallet account)
  • Smart contract accounts – are associated with bytecode stored on the network.

The result is a single contract account making innovative smart contract based wallet designs possible.

Account Abstraction ERC4337 Explained

ERC4337 introduces a new object called a UserOperation. Different users send UserOperation transactions into an alternative 3rd party mempool where bundlers package these into a bundled transaction and execute a single on-chain transaction.

A paymaster will pay gas for the bundled transactions and either sponsor the gasless transaction or get paid fees by the individual UserOperation executions.

Account Abstraction Use Cases

Account abstraction offers a number of potential benefits for users and the Ethereum protocol.

Network Scalability

EIP 4337 improves the scalability of the Ethereum network by introducing bundled transactions, which allow multiple userOperation’s to be executed within a single network transaction.

This combined with the sharding update and the migration to layer 2 rollups means that data and blockspace is going to become cheaper, faster and more efficient.

Gasless Transactions

Users can potentially pay for transaction costs in non-ETH tokens like stablecoins. The block producer will then automatically swap the tokens for ETH to cover the gas cost behind the scenes, making it easier and more convenient to use.

There is also the potential for paymasters to sponsor transactions based on a subscription model or even as an incentive to use a particular blockchain.

UX & Security

EIP 4337 introduces programmable wallets making things like multi-signature wallets with social recovery features that make signing in, password authentication, and account recovery easier. This has the potential to improve security systems that we use to self-custody assets and make it more accessible for non-technical users.

Grandma trading cryptocurrency

Building Bundlers

There is a reference bundler built by the original authors of EIP4337 here: https://github.com/eth-infinitism/bundler

You can run this locally with:

yarn && yarn preprocess
yarn hardhat-deploy --network localhost
yarn run bundler

This will fire up a local node on port 3000 which allows us to execute userOps

yarn run runop --deployFactory --network http://localhost:3000/ --entryPoint 0x0576a174d229e3cfa37253523e645a78a0c91b57

This operation deploys a wallet deployer, creates a random signer, determines the wallet address, adds funds, sends a TX to create the wallet and another from this new wallet.


ERC4337 aims to achieve account abstraction through enabling innovative use cases to ultimately improve the user experience and increase the networks scalability.

Critics of ERC4337 may argue that it will make Ethereum wallets more complex, potentially introducing new bugs, attack vectors, and centralization around the bundlers.

Ethereum needs to scale and bundling transactions will play an important part in the multi pronged scaling infrastructure we see rolling out over the coming years. This will make working with blockchains more capable and less technical, with much of the complexity hidden behind the scenes.

We need account abstraction and smart wallets for the blockchain sector to reach mainstream adoption.

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Thank you.

James Bachini

Disclaimer: Not a financial advisor, not financial advice. The content I create is to document my journey and for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not under any circumstances investment advice. I am not an investment or trading professional and am learning myself while still making plenty of mistakes along the way. Any code published is experimental and not production ready to be used for financial transactions. Do your own research and do not play with funds you do not want to lose.



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