Samsung is Planning to Enter the Crypto-Mining Business
South Korea’s Samsung Electronics has announced that it will start manufacturing ASIC chips, which will be designed specifically to mine cryptocurrencies. The tech giant made this announcement in its annual earnings report. A representative from the company confirmed that Samsung’s foundry business was working on crypto-mining chips, but did not provide any information on its potential customers. Notably, Samsung is now the world’s largest chipmaker, a position that had previously been held by Intel. According to the earnings report, Samsung’s 4th quarter profits for 2017 exceeded $11 billion.
Bell, a Korean newspaper, stated Samsung had chosen ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit) chips, because they’re ideal for handling one particular task at a time, in this case, cryptocurrency mining. Mining bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies will only become more challenging in the future. This is because solving math problems, required to validate blockchain transactions, becomes increasingly complex as more cryptocurrencies are mined.
Demand for High-Powered Chips Has Increased Significantly
When people first started mining crypto, they used the more typical integrated graphics cards. However, as more crypto was mined and mathematical calculations became more difficult, miners started to use GPUs, which were meant for videos games. Now that the crypto-mining industry is maturing, customized ASICs chips seem to be a better option.
Although Samsung has not disclosed much about its crypto-mining chips, reports from Korean media claim that it might be working alongside TSMC, Taiwan’s leading chipmaker. TSMC has already entered the crypto-mining industry. It sells its chips to various companies that specialize in mining. Already, TSMC has generated nearly $400 million in revenue through sales of its crypto-mining chips. Even though this might be impressive, it’s not anywhere near as substantial when you compare it to Samsung’s chips that bring in $69 billion in yearly revenue.
ASICs Chips are Popular with Crypto-Miners
The technology behind ASICs chips was first introduced in the early 1980s. Due the rise of the crypto-market, the mining sector for digital currencies has started looking into specialized ASICs. chips. Mining experts have determined that customized ASICs chips have the potential deliver much better performance, compared to GPUs, when it comes to solving difficult math problems required for crypto-mining. Although these mining-specific chips might not be able to handle any other type of workload, they should be able to perform functions related to cryptocurrency mining better than any other piece of hardware.
With big name companies like Samsung entering the cryptosphere, it is definitely good news for the cryptocurrency market. If established companies can continue to find ways to incorporate crypto-related technology into their existing services, then the digital currency market could begin to gain the trust of a lot more people.